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Texas stumbles in its effort to punish green financial firms

A new Texas law that penalizes financial institutions trying to go green is full of loopholes, and is straight up ignored. But other states are following Texas’s punitive approach all the same.

Floodwaters cover an access road to oil refineries 25 September 2005 in Port Arthur, Texas in the aftermath of Hurricane Rita (Credit: STAN HONDA/AFP via Getty Images)


By Mario Alejandro Ariza for Floodlight and Mose Buchele, KUT


For years, fossil fuel producing states have watched investors shy away from companies causing the climate crisis. Last year, one state decided to push back.


Texas passed a law treating financial companies shunning fossil fuels the same way it treated companies that did business with Iran, or Sudan: boycott them.


"This bill sent a strong message to both Washington and Wall Street that if you boycott Texas energy, then Texas will boycott you," Texas Representative Phil King said from the floor of the Texas legislature during deliberations on the bill, SB 13, last year.


But the Lone Star state is straining to implement the law. Loopholes and exceptions written into the law could sap its impact on financial firms that have aggressive climate policies.