*Nature is in crisis. Ladies and gentlemen, our only home is under utter siege by a handful of powerful, greedy, deranged men.
Accelerating fossil fuel heat has baked the Arctic. That pole is the warmest it has been in at least 10,000 years. In 2018, fossil fuels infused the equivalent heat into the oceans of detonating 100 million Hiroshima-style bombs. As a result, the Gray whales of northern California are starving to death.
Fossil fuel heat recently boiled one million Aussie fish to death. Heatwaves and drought across America have killed 180 million mature urban trees, spread across 175,000 acres. At least half of all coral reefs have broiled to death from hotter, longer and more frequent marine heatwaves. These are but a few examples of widespread land and sea deaths from fossil fuel heat.
The latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) special report on 1.5C highlighted the immediate need to phase out all combustion and all fossil fuels. The science is meticulous. Accelerating fossil fuel combustion will quickly shove the planet well beyond 1.5C. There is no room whatsoever for new fossil fuels.
On Earth Day, the Indigenous Environmental Network, in partnership with Rainforest ActionNetwork, BankTrack, Sierra Club and Oil Change International released the tenth edition of Banking on Climate Change. The results are gobsmacking.
- From December 2016 to 2018, after the signing of the Paris Agreement, 33 banks have invested $1.9 trillion into 1,800 fossil fuel companies with financing on the rise each year.
- The top four banking funders are JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citi Group and Bank of America.
- $600 billion went into the top 100 companies aggressively expanding fossil fuels.
- JPMorgan Chase is the world’s top fossil fuel funder at $196 billion. They are the number one financier of Canada’s tar sands, which risks poisoningfour percent of Earth’s fresh water.
- Wells Fargo is the second biggest funder at $139 billion.
- Wells Fargo doubled its fossil fuel investment from 2016-2017. They are the biggest financier of fracking oil and gas since Paris.
- Barclays Bank is the top European funder of fracking and coal power at $85 billion.
- Royal Bank of Canada leads Canada’s banking on fossil fuels at $101 billion.
- MUFG is Japan’s biggest fossil fuel expansion funder at $25 billion.
- Bank of China has funded $17 billion in new fossil fuel plays. They are the number one banker of new coal power at $16 billion.
Quite simply, Man is fast-tracking the destruction of all Earth’s life support systems and its creatures including their vital habitat.
In a warming world, each year, fossil fuels are poisoning hundreds of billions of gallons of fresh water with highly carcinogenic and radioactive fracking wastewater.
Clearly, world leaders are simply paying lip service to the leader of the “little” people, Swede, Greta Thunberg. Despite her warning that, “Change is coming whether you like it or not.”
That’s why non-violent generation Zs and millennial activists with Extinction Rebellion in London are continuously protesting. It’s also why legendary Aussie conservationist Dr Bob Brown is leading a Stop Adani Convoy of 700 concerned citizens to Claremont, Queensland, to peacefully protest against the opening of the Adani Carmichael coalmine. The children and youth of Earth want and deserve a habitable future, which certain adults have stolen from them.
- Reduce fossil fuel emissions now.
- End the annual$5.3 trillion in subsidies to fossil fuels immediately.
- Dovetail all industries in 197 countries to attain a zero-combustion world economy 2030.
The insatiable greed by the global banking community, its flagrant disregard for scientific warnings of burning more fossil fuels and its deplorable sense of entitlement to exploit the planet is irrefutably roasting what’s left of our only home. Unfracking acceptable!
Dr Reese Halter is an award-winning broadcaster, distinguished conservation biologist and author.
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