BHP Billiton Threatens to Leave World Coal Association Over Climate Policy

By Adam Clark Features Dow Jones Newswires

BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP.AU) said Tuesday that it is considering leaving the World Coal Association and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce due to policy differences and doubts over the benefit it derives from membership of the organizations.

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The Anglo-Australian mining company said a review of its industry associations found material differences between its positions on climate and energy policy and the stance of the organizations.

In particular, BHP Billiton said it found it disagreed with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's criticisms of the Paris agreement on climate change and carbon pricing, as well as the World Coal Association's call for policy changes to drive certain technology investments.

BHP Billiton said it intends to communicate its differences to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce before deciding on the future of its membership on or before March 31, 2018.

The company added it will advise the World Coal Association that it has reached a preliminary view to exit the organization, and invite responses from the body before making a final decision by March 31, 2018.

Differences were also identified with the Minerals Council of Australia, BHP Billiton said, but it added that it has decided to remain a member of the body. However, the company said it will request the council to refrain from policy activity in areas where it disagrees, and review its membership of the body if this hasn't happened within a reasonable period.

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Write to Adam Clark at adam.clark@dowjones.com; @AdamDowJones

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

December 19, 2017 02:38 ET (07:38 GMT)