BUSINESS
10/31/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Banks Now Thinking Twice About Lending To The Dirtiest Industries

fter years of legal entanglements arising from environmental messes and increased scrutiny of banks that finance the dirtiest industries, several large commercial lenders are taking a stand on industry practices that they regard as risky to their reputations and bottom lines.

In the most recent example, the banking giant Wells Fargo noted last month what it called "considerable attention and controversy" surrounding mountaintop removal mining, and said that its involvement with companies engaged in it was "limited and declining."

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