St. Paul, MN: Grand Opening of New JPMorgan Chase Branch Disrupted by Climate Activists, Students

cross-posted from Stop Line 3

Grand Opening of MN JPMorgan Chase Branch Disrupted by Climate Activists, Students 

World’s worst banker of climate change under fire for its massive financing of fossil fuels and Line 3 pipeline

Saint Paul –– As the newest Chase branch in Minnesota opened its doors for the first time, activists and students from Macalester College staged a rally and “die-in” in the lobby, demanding that the world’s worst banker of climate change defund fossil fuels. The action follows a blitz of demonstrations across the country this year targeting Chase Bank; from Chicago, to New York, to Seattle, to Los Angeles, to San Francisco.

“As a young person who will be inheriting this uncertain future, I know climate action is needed now,” said Andrew Vrabel Miles, a 23 year old senior at nearby Macalester College. “Chase bank, which is opening a branch right by my school, has taken no action to defund climate change by defunding fossil fuels and major fossil fuel infrastructure projects like the Line 3 pipeline. We demand Chase stop destroying our future!”

According to data from Rainforest Action Network’s Banking on Climate Change 2019 report, since the Paris Agreement, JPMorgan Chase has provided $196 billion in finance for fossil fuels. Chase is the world’s worst funder of fossil fuels and the world’s worst funder of fossil fuel expansion –– by a large margin. Additionally, Chase is one of several banks currently lending to three different active Enbridge pipeline-related loans, totaling approx. $5.4 billion.

“We are taking action today because Chase needs to be held accountable for its outsized role in
the climate crisis,” said Ethan Nuss with Rainforest Action Network. “Our very future is
contingent on an immediate end to the expansion of fossil fuel extraction and infrastructure. We
won’t stop taking action until Chase takes real tangible action on climate.”

###

Chicago: Indigenous & Climate Activists Disrupt Chase Meeting

Our Native communities bear the brunt of impacts from tar sands pipelines, like Line 3.” – Dallas Goldtooth, Indigenous Environmental Network

JPMorgan Chase is banking on climate change and fossil fuels. We’re banking on fierce resistance to Big Oil, Big Coal and the Wall street banks funding them.

Today, Indigenous and climate activists converged at the JPMorgan Chase Tower in Chicago to disrupt the mega-banks annual shareholder meeting. JPMorgan Chase is the worst funder of fossil fuels (oil, gas, coal) in the world. Since the Paris climate talks in 2015, they’ve put almost $200 billion dollars into fossil fuels. (That’s right, $200 BILLION with a big “B.”)

wheat pastes in Chicago. courtesy of a guerrilla art crew.

The morning started with wheat paste posters put out along Chicago sidewalks outside the shareholder meeting with a clear message for Chase: “You’re the Worst!”

A delegation of Indigenous leaders and environmentalists entered into the meeting to directly confront Chase’s CEO Jamie Dimon. Inside, they read him statements, facts from the “Banking on Climate Change” report, delivered a letter signed by over 300 civil society groups and then two activists were escorted out after chanting “Defund climate change, stop funding fossil fuels.”

Meanwhile outside over a hundred people gathered in protest of Chase’s investments in fossil fuels. Speakers from a variety of groups spokes, chants were chanted and signs, banners and beautiful art were put on display.

Then Indigenous leaders led the crowd to block the entrances of Chase Tower. They held the space, forcing Chicago police to move out of the way, while speakers continued to speak. Eventually they left with no arrests.

As Amelia Diehl from Rising Tide Chicago said “Chicago is at the epicenter of a dirty pipeline system, much of it funded by Chase Bank, and we are showing that resistance is more powerful than extractive industries. By funding pipelines that spill, Chase Bank is directly responsible for putting the water source of over 30 million people in the Great Lakes watershed region at risk.

JPMorgan Chase is the worst funder toxic fossil fuels and destructive infrastructure projects. Communities are now rising up to hold them to account and shut down the flow of money into dirty energy.

###