A group of high power Hollywood celebrities are leading the way in a new movement, removing their money and assets from banks that are supporting the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline.
The pipeline construction is at a standstill with government currently restricting the access of the $3.8B, 1,100 mile fracked-oil pipeline currently under construction from the Bakken shale fields of North Dakota to Peoria, Illinois, until a further environmental impact report is fulfilled. Over a million supporters have joined the Sioux nation in solidarity as they fight the construction where it is due to be laid under the Missouri River, the longest river on the continent, cutting through Lakota Treaty Territory at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation.
Whilst mainstream media has largely failed to cover the resistance, high profile figures have been able to gain some attention with actress Shailene Woodley being one of the movements most vocal supporters.
The next strategy in resistance from the water protector movement, is to withdraw monies from the long list of major banks that have interests in fossil fuel companies and have invested in the pipeline construction. Among them, Citibank Group, ING US, Mizuho Bank & Wells Fargo. In the US tomorrow, actress and social activist, Jane Fonda will be leading a march in Hollywood to Wells Fargo bank, where she will officially make her #BankExit, removing all of her money from the major bank, alongside fellow actresses including Lily Tomlin & Catherine Keener. The march will then continue to rally outside of Chase @ Sunset. The hope is that this movement of #BankExit will send a clear message to the many large bank lenders that this kind of project that has potentially devastating environmental effects is not supported.
In a recent blog post, Fonda outlines the reasons behind the #BankExit strategy. "I’ve also stayed on top of what’s happened at Standing Rock. You all know President Obama canceled the pipeline’s easement. Bravo for him and for the courageous Water Protectors. But we all knew this wasn’t over. DAPL is refusing to move or be rerouted and a freezing blizzard sent many water protectors and their veteran supporters home."
"But there are serious financial issues confronting Energy Partners Transfer, the company that has developed the pipeline this far. And for those of us who have accounts in the banks that have loaned money to DAPL, we should ask the banks how they could have put our money into such a terrible investment. In order to speed up the demise of the superfluous, contaminating, greedy DAPL, a powerful new movement has arisen called DeFund DAPL. We are taking our money out of those banks."
Check out Jane Fonda's full blog post here.