Environmental activists to protest against bank’s funding of oil pipeline
Cape Town - Extinction Rebellion (XR) Cape Town is gearing up for a peaceful demonstration outside the Standard Bank Thibault Square branch in the Cape Town CBD on Saturday.
The protest is an effort to place pressure on major banking corporations - namely Standard Bank - to cease potential funding of a $3.5 billion oil pipeline in East Africa - the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) or Uganda–Tanzania Crude Oil Pipeline.
Along with the two governments, French oil company Total, China National Offshore Oil Corporation and Tullow Oil are leading the developments and will ship and export the crude oil to the international market.
EACOP is a 1 445km crude oil pipeline that will transport Uganda’s crude oil from Kabaale (Hoima) to the Chongoleani peninsula near Tanga port in Tanzania.
The #StopEACOP campaign aims to create awareness of the massive implications the construction of the pipeline will have in displacing communities, endangering wildlife and creating a climate catastrophe.
XR Cape Town action co-ordinator Cassi Goodman said XR’s role in #StopEACOP is focused on stopping Standard Bank’s role as a funder.
“Without funding, the pipeline will not be able to go ahead. Standard Bank is one of the major potential funders of the project. It is way past time for banks to stop funding any new fossil fuel projects. They are investing in planetary destruction, and we aim to stop this,” said Goodman.
“We aim to do a bit of street theatre and to educate the public on the role that Standard Bank is playing in the destruction of our planet, and asking them to move their money to a bank that cares about their future, not just about money. People over profit.”
XR SA spokesperson Malik Dasoo said, “The pipeline’s direct effects ruin local livelihoods by displacing many local communities. It threatens key biodiversity corridors as well as the water quality of the region.
“The indirect effects essentially mean that 216 000 barrels of oil a day get put into our atmosphere in the form of greenhouse gases and exacerbate the climate crisis, which as we know, disproportionately harms the global south and poorer communities.”
The protest will start at 10am.