My name is Selen, and I’m thrilled to share a bit about the first-ever finance campaign in Turkey: “Smoke-Free Money Zone.“The objective of our “Smoke-Free Money Zone” campaign is to call on financial institutions to stop financing coal-based assets.

Back in 2021, we set out to confront financial institutions who fund coal-based assets and their customers. And in March 2022, we officially launched our campaign. Here’s how we got our campaign off the ground:

First, we launched a petition targeting the CEOs of financial institutions and created an animated video in Turkish explaining our campaign and what’s at stake for our climate.

Then, we sent a package to the CEOs of our target banks with an open letter, a memo, and a soap. Why did we send them soap? Because we want them to wash their hands of coal and fossil fuels! The soaps are actually made of olive oil and they were made by the women of Yırca Village who successfully protected their olive trees against a coal power plant in 2015.

Women of Yirca Village holding olives from their protected olive trees. 

The next step in our campaign will be amplifying the release of the Carbon Monitor Report as a moment to build more awareness for our campaign. We’re also planning on launching our campaign website in the beginning of May! has so many campaigns happening simultaneously all over the world, that it’s wonderful to be able to step back and celebrate our movement. Thank you again for taking the time to hear about our campaign, and happy Earth Month!

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