HSBC respond by saying they’re open to negotiate but will not ‘condone vandalism’.
Ongoing protests against the corporate world’s involvement in dirty energy has intensified actions to counter the inaction of what activists say are ‘greenwashing’ tactics.
Coinciding with Earth day, Extinction Rebellion protestors smashed 19 windows at HSBC headquarters in Canary Wharf, London using chisels and hammers.
Nine people were involved wearing patches that said “better broken windows than broken promises”. Following their actions, they sat down outside the building awaiting arrest by the police.
Those involved were taken into custody on the charge of suspicion of criminal damage following the act which took place at approximately 07:00am.
An HSBC spokesperson responded saying: “We welcome meaningful dialogue on our climate strategy; however, we cannot condone vandalism or actions that put people and property at risk,” a spokesman said. “We have an ambition to be net-zero by 2030 and to bring our financed emissions to net-zero by 2050.”
“We have also committed to set out short- and medium-term transition targets, and to phase out the financing of coal-fired power and thermal coal mining by 2040 globally. We remain committed to supporting our customers in their transition to net zero.”
An Extinction Rebellion spokesperson said: “
“Despite HSBC’s pledge to shrink its carbon footprint to net-zero by 2050, their current climate plan still allows the bank to finance coal power, and provides no basis to turn away clients or cancel contracts based on links to the fossil fuel industry.”
Photograph: Joao Daniel Pereira