Bank Divestment

“At this point anyone who finances any fossil fuel infrastructure is attempting to make money on the guaranteed destruction of the planet.” --Bill McKibben in YES Magazine, 9/22/16

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Heeding the original call of indigenous Americans, 350 Maine has mounted an ambitious bank divestment campaign. Ours is a multi-level approach aimed at ending the financing of all new fossil fuel infrastructure. We urge our friends, and friends of friends, throughout the state to join us in this undertaking.

The principal focus of our campaign is TD (Toronto Dominion) Bank, which, through its subsidiary, TD Securities, is the biggest investor in the Dakota Access Pipeline (as it was previously in the Keystone XL Pipeline) to be found in the State of Maine. Bank of America is also complicit but to a lesser extent.

Banks are the soft underbelly of the fossil fuel T-rex, a monster that’s wreaking havoc on the earth’s climate. Since 2010, pipelines alone are responsible for 330 crude oil and gas leaks, killing 80 people, injuring 890 and incurring over $2.8 billion in damages.

What can I do?

We know you’re busy. There are so many things that need your attention right now, and it can be overwhelming. This action is concrete, simple and effective. Let TD Bank know how you feel about the climate of our planet! We’ve narrowed it down to three steps:

Divest

  • Close your TD bank or Bank of America accounts
  • Meet with your bank's branch manager to courteously explain why
  • Write to the bank to explain why you are closing your account

Reinvest

  • Transfer your money to a “friendly” bank or credit union
  • If you have any stocks or bonds tied to the fossil fuel economy, talk to your broker about reinvesting in renewable energy and companies that are committed to social justice and sustainability.

Prosper

  • Spread the word -- email us and share information with others
  • Celebrate! You’ve just made a significant contribution to your own and your children’s future.

 

If you are not a TD Bank or Bank of America customer, find a friend, family member, or acquaintance who is, share this information, and encourage them to divest! Let us build this new age of renewable energy together—resolutely, courageously, and quickly.

Contact Esphabad Dodd for more information or to get involved with this campaign.

 

CLOSING YOUR TD BANK OR BANK OF AMERICA ACCOUNT

You can walk into virtually any branch of TD Bank to close your account on the spot.  Bank of America is a slightly different story in that you may have to set up an appointment in advance to do so.  Here are a few helpful tips about the processes involved.

  1. Talk to the branch manager in advance of actually closing the account. To get in to see him or her, you may have to say that you want to file a complaint (your opposition to the bank’s support of DAPL and Keystone XL and new fossil fuel infrastructure projects). Be friendly but clearly state your case.
  2. Decide on where to put the money you withdraw, i.e., your new bank. We suggest either a community-oriented institution like Bangor Savings or Norway Savings Bank OR a convenient local credit union. The important thing is to keep your money in state and, to the extent possible, in your local community. Also be sure to verify that the bank or credit union does not have investments in the fossil fuel industry.
  3. Make arrangements for any automatic deposits or payments to be transferred to your new bank account. Note that it may take up to two months for Social Security to make the change.
  4. When you are certain all automatic transactions are taken care of, then definitively close your TD Bank or Bank of America account. Celebrate!
  5. Finally, don’t forget to close out any credit cards with institutions supporting the fossil fuel industry. Instead, get a credit card through the Sierra Club or Credo. And, if you have any stocks or bonds tied to the carbon economy, talk to your broker about reinvesting in green renewables.