On the 20th of April, Climate First! staged what may be the first snowflake of the coming avalanche of protests in DC against Trump’s reborn Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. Two branches of Wells Fargo, one of the banks financing TransCanada were targetted. As 17th and Penn, activists got inside to deliver a letter. The second branch at 18th and K sts locked their doors.
While the second branch made an effort to unlock their doors for customers, this sort of thing still tends to turn business away. Wells Fargo’s awful reputation is also a deterrent to keeping money there. Wells Fargo is a “second offender” on the pipeline issue, as they are also famous for supporting the Dakota Access Pipeline with their dollars.
In addition to that, they are infamous for supporting private prisons through their investments in the GEO Group. Here in DC, Wells Fargo has earned a “failing grade” from regulators for housing discrimination that could force the DC government to move over $2 Billion out of this bank. Nationally they have become known for the fake accounts set up against their customers that forced the “clawback” of executive compensation from some of those responsible.
As for the Keystone XL, that pipeline was origjnally stopped by a continent-wide, all-out stand that outlasted the era in which oil prices exceeded the $75 a barrel threshold for profitability of tar sands production. The Canadian tar pits now produce oil at a loss, fearing that otherwise the underground “in-situ” heated wells become permanently disabled by becoming filled with water. In addtion, the state of Nebraska’s courts overturned a fast-track eminent domain process TransCanada had used to obtain land for the route at a fraction of the normal price. As a result, the pipeline now has no route through Nebraska, a state that can stop the Keystone XL no matter what Trump does. Wells Fargo is taking a reckless risk with their depositor’s money by investing in this project.
Video of Climate First! activists entering first Wells Fargo branch for letter delivery
Inside the Wells Fargo at 17th and Penn
Wells Fargo at 18th and K locked their doors, unlocking them only for recognizable customers