Wall Street, Like the Climate Bill, Bets on Both Green Energy and Fossil Fuels

The climate-and-energy legislation that Congress just passed includes spending for both renewables startups and fossil-fuel producers—a broad, even if seemingly contradictory, strategy that many on Wall Street are already pursuing.

While pouring money into projects geared toward lowering carbon emissions, Wall Street firms have also continued financing oil-and-gas companies through direct lending, debt underwriting or infrastructure investing. The amount of money raised through bonds and loans for green projects and by oil-and-gas companies was nearly identical at about $570 billion last year, according to Dealogic. Although fundraising in both areas has slowed during this year’s market volatility, the ratio of green-to-fossil-fuel financing has stayed roughly similar.

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