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Stand with Standing Rock: Defund DAPL

The Trump administration has given the green light for the Dakota Access pipeline project—despite the fact that the pipeline threatens the water supply of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and an environmental impact survey was never completed. 

But as YES! contributing editor Bill McKibben wrote last fall, this is a two-front war—against Big Oil and Big Banks. There are 38 banks involved in financing the Dakota Access pipeline. For several months now people have been organizing to send them a message: funding disaster is not good for business. You can join in, too.  

1. Move Your Money

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Abigail Porter, 23, from Asheville, North Carolina. Photo courtesy of DeFundDAPL.

Is your bank financing the Dakota Access pipeline? If you bank with the big ones, odds are good that they are. Find out here. Pay attention to whether theyre one of the 17 banks directly financing the project or one of the other 21 that fund the pipelines parent companies. That way you can let them know exactly why you're closing your account. 

Next, figure out where you want to move your money. Nonprofit credit unions are a good option, along with other socially responsible banks. Heres a handy guide. Once you set up your new account(s), youll want to move things like direct deposit and recurring payments over.  

When youve transferred all your business, its time to close your accounts at your old bank—and let them know why. Check out this article, 7 Ways to Make an Even Bigger Impact When You Divest From DAPL

2. Get Your Town or City to Move Their Money

Seattle Divests From Wells Fargo

Standing Rock Sioux tribal member Olivia One Feather testifies before the Seattle City Council in favor of divestment from Wells Fargo. Photo by J. Gabriel Ware.

The only thing banks like less than losing millions of dollars is losing billions (thats right, billions) of dollars. But thats exactly what's happening. The City of Seattle recently voted to end their contract with Wells Fargo, worth more than $3 billion. Days later, Davis, Calif. did the same.

Other cities, including Minneapolis, Santa Fe, Boulder, and Portland may be poised to follow suit. Even New York’s mayor, Bill de Blasio, has expressed interest in divesting the city’s pension funds from DAPL.  

Find out if people in your city are talking about divestment. If they are, join your local organizers. If not, get together with some neighbors and get the ball rolling: contact your city council members, show up to town hall meetings, get active. 

You can also support people in other cities as they put pressure on their elected officials. Follow Defund DAPL on Facebook for updates on what’s happening around the country, and action alerts about who to call. 


Action Resources for the Trump Era

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