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Environmental protesters disrupt bank business in Nanaimo in response to fossil-fuel investment

Extinction Rebellion protesters turn clients away at Brooks Landing branch

Protesters from Extinction Rebellion disrupted bank business in Nanaimo this morning to protest the financial institution’s investment in the fossil-fuel industry.

Extinction Rebellion members Vic Brice and Howard Breen superglued themselves to the door handles at the RBC at Brooks Landing on Thursday, April 7, and Breen was arrested.

Extinction Rebellion issued a press release Thursday morning intended to “name and shame” RBC president and CEO David McKay in response to the bank’s role in financial transactions related to the Coastal GasLink pipeline project on Wet’suwet’en territory in northern B.C.

“This CEO and his shareholders are not demonstrating any immediacy or imminence to the cascading apocalyptic threats of climate, biodiversity, human population, and indigenous justice collective collapse,” said Vic Brice, Extinction Rebellion Nanaimo spokesman, in the release. “We demand judicial reform which will find such behaviour guilty beyond a reasonable doubt for climate crimes against humanity, and environmental racism.”

Another Extinction Rebellion member, Howard Breen, noted in the release that all reasonable legal and political recourses have been exhausted in opposing Coastal GasLink, “shy of initiating a ‘legal citizens arrest’ of the RBC CEO ourselves – we hope it won’t come to that.”

McKay, in a CEO’s message published in RBC’s Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures Report 2021, said the bank will play “an active leadership role” in a transition to net-zero emissions, both by working with clients and by addressing its own operations.

“We have a clear climate strategy and road map, combining short- and long-term actions and commitments that support achieving net-zero in our lending by 2050,” he said in the report.

READ ALSO: Protesters occupy TD Bank in Nanaimo, want an end to fossil fuel investments

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Nanaimo RCMP constables take down information from Extinction Rebellion members Howard Breen, left, and Vic Brice, who glued their hands to the entrance doors the RBC bank branch after chaining the doors closed at Brooks Landing shopping centre Thursday, April 7. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)

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