SUPPORTERS of Extinction Rebellion took to the streets over the weekend in protest against the continued fossil fuel funding of major banks.

The group, which was formed and meets regularly in Winsford, claims that well known banks including Barclays, HSBC and Santander continue to provide tens of billions of pounds in finance each year for fossil fuel.

Group members gathered in protest against these projects, which they say are destroying our planet and local environment, outside branches of the aforementioned banks in Northwich town centre.

And protesters are calling on banks to rethink their strategy and to stop financing the climate crisis.

James Kelly, Extinction Rebellion Cheshire spokesman, said: “Despite the climate and ecological emergency, these banks are continuing to pump eye watering amounts of money into fossil fuel projects.

Winsford Guardian:

Extinction Rebellion Cheshire spokesman James Kelly during the protest

“Over the past four years, Barclays alone has provided $118 billion in finance to coal, oil and gas projects.

“The last thing we need right now is more exploration and extraction of these damaging fuels.”

He went on to say: “We wanted to send a message to the banks that they need to clean up their act and divest from fossil fuel projects.

“We also ask that anyone with a bank account goes to the website earthdayswitch.org to see whether their bank is contributing to the problem.

Winsford Guardian:

“If they don’t like what they see, then it is very easy to switch to another bank.”

As well as highlighting the climate crisis, the protesters were also drawing attention to the detrimental effect that burning fossil fuels has on the health of Cheshire residents.

They quoted a 2019 report by Public Health England, which states: “Air pollution is the biggest environmental threat to health in the UK, with between 28,000 and 36,000 deaths a year attributed to long-term exposure.

“There is strong evidence that air pollution causes the development of coronary heart disease, stroke, respiratory disease and lung cancer and exacerbates asthma.”

To learn more about Extinction Rebellion Cheshire, email xrcheshire@protonmail.com or search for Extinction Rebellion Cheshire on Facebook.