“Chase Bank is by far the biggest funder of fossil fuel exploration, arctic drilling, Amazon deforestation – $196B and counting,” said protester Justin Boyan. “The protest was totally nonviolent – We just wanted to raise awareness of what Chase Bank is doing.”
Climate Action Rhode Island (CARI) held a “die-in” at Chase Bank on Thayer Street in Providence on Friday to pressure the corporation “to stop funding any new fossil fuel projects and to phase out all existing fossil fuel funding.”
Ten people entered the bank with cardboard tombstones representing lives lost to climate disasters worldwide, disasters linked to warming temperatures due to human caused climate change. Each member of CARI made a short statement and then laid down on the floor. Chase Bank branch management called the Providence Police. Arriving officers told the protesters to leave the bank.
The protesters left without any arrests.
Here’s the video:
“Chase Bank is by far the biggest funder of fossil fuel exploration, arctic drilling, Amazon deforestation – $196B and counting,” said Justin Boyan, one of the protesters when he left the bank. “The protest was totally nonviolent – We just wanted to raise awareness of what Chase Bank is doing.”
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CARI’s Jennifer Long explained to the crowd outside what happened inside the bank during the protest. “I would call [the action] a success,” said Long. “We made our point. We did it peacefully. I think we are helping to make aware that it is time for Chase to change their policies, invest in renewable energy, walk away from fossil fuel expansion and extraction.”
Susan Kelley was inside the Chase Bank branch when the protest happened, ready to start an account there. After hearing the protesters, she changed her mind.
“I was just going to open an account there and now I’m not,” said Kelley. “I just sold my house in West Virginia where fracking dominates, and I just found out [Chase Bank] are supporting oil and gas companies – are investing in oil and gas companies – I’m from West Virginia. I have seen what oil and gas does… I had no idea Chase was such a big player. i was going to give them my $71K today.
Greg Gerritt laid out the history of Chase Bank:
Justin Boyan addresses the crowd:
Dr Joanna Brown talked about the health effects of air pollution due to fossil fuels and climate change.
Martina is a seabird scientist and she’s been watching as their populations crash in response to climate change.
“Climate change is the product of racism and capitalism and colonialism,” said Nina Wolff Landau. When we think about climate change, it’s not a coincidence that people who have contributed the least to climate change are affected the most.”
Protesters staged a second, smaller die-in outside the bank on the sidewalk.
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