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Youth Team

Youth Protest Bank of America Funding Fossil Fuels

NH Student Activists Gathered on May 8th to Demand Bank of America End Funding to the Fossil Fuel Industry:

Bedford, NH — On Saturday evening a group of high school activists from the 350NH Youth Team and members of Extinction Rebellion met at the Bank of America in Bedford to protest the bank’s involvement in funding the fossil fuel industry. Speakers urged for the end to the money pipeline from banks and other firms that keeps the fossil fuel industry afloat even as our society has increasingly recognized the environmental costs of fossil fuels. The event was both virtual with a Zoom call run by youth team members and in-person where participants drew in chalk along the sidewalk near the bank.

Nikhil Chavda, sophomore at Coe Brown Academy and organizer of the event says: “Bank of America lends money to fossil fuel companies that build pipelines such as Line 3 in Minnesota. Between 2016 and 2020, Bank of America lent $3.16 BILLION dollars to Enbridge, the company building the pipeline. They lent $350 Million to the Dakota Access Pipeline, which still operates today! Without money from big banks, fossil fuel companies wouldn’t have enough money to support the building of more pipelines. Bank of America could stop this, if they stop lending these companies billions of dollars.”

This action, organized by high school-aged activists across New Hampshire, sends a message to the CEOs of Bank of America and other big banks that it is unacceptable to profit off of the destruction of the climate. Individuals in positions of power have failed to protect the climate and it is now up to ordinary people to make the changes necessary in the time we have left. We demand that the people in power step up, and stop investing money in the fossil fuel industry, funding dangerous projects such as the Line 3 Pipeline, currently being built on indigenous land. 

“We are calling from all corners of the globe that it is time to Defund Line 3. This is just a start, but it is not the end of our efforts. We will continue to fight until we strip the monetary foundation of the fossil fuel industry away and put out the fire that threatens all of us, once and for all” says Anna Rose Marion, a senior in high school and organizer of the event.

Grassroots resistance to the pipeline is growing across the country, day by day. Actions in opposition will continue to be organized, and the corporations funding such destruction of the planet will be targeted. Bank of America is not innocent, and the youth of New Hampshire will not stand to pretend that they are. This action was one of many, and we will continue to fight until big banks stop funding the fossil fuel industry, and the building of Line 3 in Minnesota.

This action is a part of a global day of action to call on banks to Defund Line 3 pipeline. Learn more about the national coalition here.

Categories
Youth Team

Earth Day Online: 2020

On Earth Day, our actions started when 350NH’s Youth Team was on NHPR’s morning radio show “The Exchange.” They talked answered the question: “How has the pandemic changed your climate activism?” Prior to the outbreak of COVID-19, our youth team was planning climate strikes in their towns and preparing for a sit-in at Governor Sununu’s office. They were hoping to call on our governor and elected officials to sign climate legislation that meets the goals of the Green New Deal. Now, with the pandemic leaving millions of people unemployed, their activism isn’t stopping.

“Climate activism is the one thing I do have control over and the one thing that’s remaining constant right now,” said Kai Parlett, a high school 350NH Youth Fellow from Randolph: “The climate crisis doesn’t stop just because the world is imploding from another crisis. We’re still seeing fossil fuel pollution and fracking and the Granite Bridge pipeline [proposal from Liberty Utilities]. None of that stops because of the coronavirus, which should also mean that we shouldn’t stop fighting those things.” Ruby Carr, a 350NH Youth Fellow from Nottingham, agrees: “Climate activism is kind of the one thing I do have control over and the one thing that’s remaining constant right now. It feels nice to be able to work on fixing something, because obviously you can’t activism away a virus.”

The pandemic has affected everyone in New Hampshire in some way from finishing out the school year online to losing jobs. When thinking about federal and state level policy that could help us all recover, the 350NH Youth Team agrees that both the COVID-19 crisis and the climate crisis can be addressed within the framework of a Green New Deal. Lilly Tague-Bleau, 350NH Youth Fellow from Manchester said “We’re doing the best we can for this pandemic with what we have…but with climate, we do have solutions. We have a Green New Deal.” The Green New Deal, a resolution introduced in Congress in 2018, set goals to combat the climate crisis and create millions of good jobs in the process. These jobs could put the millions of unemployed people in our country back to work.

Shannon Jackson, a 350NH fellow from Nottingham said “I know a lot of people had doubts about how sweeping climate legislation like the Green New Deal could be implemented. Seeing the government’s response to the coronavirus has solidified, at least in my mind, that we can definitely do this – it’s just that people are choosing not to. We can definitely take trillions of dollars out of seemingly nowhere, and that just solidifies my convictions.”

After the morning radio show, 350NH encouraged people to join Earth Day Live – a 3 day livestream on social media featuring dozens of climate activists from around the country, addressing various climate-related topics and calling people to take action at home. 350NH Sent over 150 letters to our state senators asking them to support a People’s Bailout and prevent the fossil fuel industry from getting a huge bailout in federal stimulus packages. We posted dozens of pictures on social media with #NHClimateTakeover, sharing our home-made climate strike art and talking about how COVID-19 has changed the way we think about the climate crisis.

We will continue to fight for climate justice, especially now. Sign up on our homepage to learn more and get involved!

P.S. Did you miss the radio show? Listen here