As part of a Nationwide push by Greenpeace to put pressure on Barclays to pull out of funding oil pipelines from Tar sands in Canada, we set up our table in Swansea town centre outside the bank, complete with replica ATM but with a striking Dirty Barclays logo that dripped black oil. We asked members of the public and Barclays customers to have their photos taken with giant scissors cutting up a Barclays credit card, sign our replica credit cards and on a sweltering July day collected a good number of photos and signatures, and handed out information on the campaign.
Tar sands in Canada is a horror story - huge swathes of land have been devastated in the push to extract oil out of bitumen deposits. This unconventional method requires large amounts of water which become contaminated and uses twice the energy of more conventional drilling, such that Tar sands poses a great risk to global warming. If the pipelines go ahead, oil production in Alberta, Canada will increase massively and CO2 emissions will be pushed to dangerous levels worldwide, this has got to be stopped. Incidentally we found out from some local environmental activists, not involved with Greenpeace that oil from Tar sands is already being imported into the UK and is refined not far away at Milford Haven by the company Valero. It seems they are thinking of some kind of local protest.
Hopefully we played our part along with Greenpeace groups all over the country in making Barclays feel the pressure and as has happened with other campaigns where we have targetted banks, will be successful in persuading them to withdraw funding for this dirty industry.