Bank of America Pledges $20 Billion for Green Loans

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Bank of America dedicated a huge chunk of change today to green initiatives. It may just be the biggest green project of any corporation in history.

No doubt this is fantastic for the planet. But it may take a few years to tell whether this is as good for the planet as it is for the bank’s reputation. For example, Yale law professor Daniel Esty said that last year Virgin’s Richard Branson pledged $3 billion to combat global warming over a decade. But Branson only earmarked profits from his air and rail businesses, which don’t always turn a profit.

Suspicion aside, it’s crucial for corporations to get recognition for good work. Otherwise they won’t do it. They’ll behave according to the adage, “no good deed goes unpunished.” Most of $20 billion will go to cut-rate rate loans for green business and green real estate. But the bank pledged to donate $100 million outright for conservation and to LEED certify all bank buildings. So give it up for the bank! Let’s hope others follow suit.

The manifesto on cooperation between corporations and environmentalists is Natural Capitalism, an inspiring read. When is “corporate responsibility” just hype? Read about British Petroleum and Interface carpet company in our November issue.

—April Rabkin

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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