Campaigners from Worthing World Development Movement group set up a carbon cocktail bar in Sussex South Street on Thursday August 15th. The group put the bar close to branches of the major banks, to protest against the UK finance sector’s bankrolling of the fossil fuel companies driving climate change.
Waiters offered oily carbon cocktails to passers-by to highlight the billions of pounds UK banks are pouring into oil and gas.
Fossil fuel companies are worth £900 billion on the London Stock Exchange, and the top five UK banks underwrote £170 billion in bonds and share issues for fossil fuel companies between 2010 and 2012.
Over 30 people signed petitions and cards calling on business secretary Vince Cable to force banks to report the carbon emissions released by the oil, coal and gas projects they finance.
New rules that came into force in April means banks have to report the carbon emissions from light bulbs in their London offices – but they are not required to report the much greater climate impact of the fossil fuel projects they finance across the world.
Spokesperson for the group Michael Jacklin said “Fossil fuel energy causes climate change; food prices will rise; in this country we will generally just pay more, but in the third world people will starve.
“Only when the banks impact on the climate is made public will we have a chance of forcing them to reduce it”.