October 29, 2021

Pacific Climate Warriors to hold ceremony at Bank of England

Pictures and video available here and here

London, U.K – Representatives from the Pacific Climate Warriors and youth activists from the Philippines, Uganda, Kenya, Zambia, Namibia, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Costa Rica and Malaysia, will host a ceremony, calling on UK banks to end their financial ties to fossil fuel projects.

Before travelling to the UN Climate talks in Glasgow, the groups will commemorate people who have lost their lives due to continued fossil fuel extraction and the climate crisis – drawing attention to the money that UK banks currently pour into overseas projects and highlight the impact on their communities.

This is part of a global wave of actions, over 120 across 26 countries, demanding an end to fossil fuel finance.

Financiers in the UK are responsible for supporting climate chaos through fossil fuel projects like fracking in Vaca Muerta, in Argentina. Actions will take place earlier in the day across the city of London, including at Lloyds of London and Standard Chartered. CThe campaigners are closing the day of action by calling on the Bank of England to use its regulatory power to stop the flows of UK money to destructive projects around the world and instead turbo charge investment into a fair, green transition.

Joseph Zane Sikulu from the Pacific Climate Warriors said:

“We are here at the Bank of England to bring the voices of our people and communities who are severely impacted by the climate crisis. The harsh reality of climate breakdown is one that is felt every day and one fuelled by money from UK banks and institutions. As we head to the UN climate talks, we are calling on Andrew Bailey and Rishi Sunak to regulate these finance flows and secure the future of ours and other indigenous people, land and communities.”

A recent report showed that UK banks and investors are responsible for nearly double the country’s annual emissions.

By their own estimates, the Bank of England’s asset purchase programme is currently aligned with a 3C rise in global temperatures – massively more than the 1.5C target that nations have committed to in the Paris climate agreement, and that is needed to avoid the worst impacts of climate change.

Rachel Oliver, Head of Campaigns at Positive Money said

“With only a few years left to turn the tides on fossil fuels, vast amounts of money are still flowing in the wrong direction. On the Bank of England’s watch, UK banks are being allowed to fuel climate destruction at home and across the world.

Today, young people, those on the frontlines of climate resistance, experts and members of the public, are gathering to send a clear message: money from the City of London is choking our planet and it’s time to invest in a cleaner, greener, fairer future.

We’re calling on the Bank of England to work with the government to protect our communities by stopping banks from funding climate chaos, and steering investment towards the green jobs and projects we so desperately need.”

Following the launch of the first wave of Covid measures in 2020 it was revealed that 19.5% of the bank’s financial support had gone to polluting companies in the oil, gas, airline and automobile industries.

Nick Bryer from 350.org added:

“It’s clear that UK banks are out of control when it comes to pouring money into fossil fuels and they’re not going to stop anytime soon. We’ve seen a few weak commitments before COP26, but nowhere near the scale that we need. To meet the urgency and severity of the climate crisis, we need the Bank of England to properly regulate the banking sector, and ensure that the UK stops funding the destruction of livelihoods and communities around the world”

The ceremony will also be accompanied by a light and sound installation, inviting people to hear the voices and stories of people on the frontlines of resistance, to celebrate and commemorate their lives and resistance, and  to acknowledge the impact of the UK finance sector’s role in fuelling the climate crisis. Over 200 lanterns will be lit throughout the event. People across the country have been invited to light a lantern for climate justice at 6pm

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Media contact: Tommy Vickerstaff, +447854047446, [email protected]

This action is part of a series of actions from October 29th to November 6th. 350.org and allies in every region of the globe will unleash a wave of over 120 coordinated actions against financial targets that continue to prop up the fossil fuel industry. The UK day of action is coordinated by Tipping Point UK

More info on the actions can be found at: http://defundclimatechaos.uk/

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