HSBC banker slammed for rejecting climate warnings Business News

An HSBC responsible investment banker has come under fire for suggesting ‘doomsday warnings’ about climate change are ‘unfounded’.

Stuart Kirk of HSBC Asset Management made the remarks during a FinancialTimes Moral Money event on Thursday, the newspaper reported.

He said that throughout his 25-year career in finance, there had always been a “crazy job” warning him of “the end of the world”.

Mr Kirk also compared the climate crisis to the millennium bug, the dreaded global computer problem at the end of 1999.

“Unsubstantiated, strident, partisan, self-serving and apocalyptic warnings are ALWAYS wrong,” he wrote on a slide accompanying his presentation, according to the FT.

He also reportedly said “who cares if Miami is six meters under water in 100 years?” adding: “Amsterdam has been six meters under water for ages, and it’s a really nice place. We will face it. »

Mr Kirk did not question the science behind climate change, but suggested HSBC investors had more pressing concerns.

His comments come as the public talks more and more about climate change and banks and financial institutions increasingly call on banks and financial institutions to stop supporting fossil fuels and support the transition to renewable energy. .

Activists condemned the comments and called for Mr Kirk to be sacked.

Beau O’Sullivan, head of the Bank on our Future campaign, said: “HSBC should ask Mr Kirk to resign: his comments are inexcusable and completely disregard the impacts of the climate crisis being felt by the South at this time.

“Unfortunately, he’s probably not the only bad apple at HSBC given his record of funding climate destruction.”

Nicolas Moreau, chief executive of HSBC Asset Management, said Mr Kirk’s comments “in no way reflect the views of HSBC Asset Management or the HSBC Group”. He added that HSBC remained committed to achieving net zero emissions by 2050.

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This notice was published: 2022-05-21 14:35:47

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