By Art Lightstone
RBC is the biggest funder of fossil fuels in Canada, and the 5th biggest funder of fossil fuels in the world.
In fact, since the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement was signed, the Royal Bank of Canada has poured over $200 billion into fossil fuels.
During the October 29th Day of Action Against Fossil Fuels, regional activists, local residents, and students from the Newmarket / Aurora area will be demonstrating outside the RBC branch at 16591 Yonge Street, Newmarket, Ontario.
The Newmarket demonstration starts at 4:30 pm,
and goes until 6:00 PM.
We are asking the Royal Bank of Canada to stop funding climate destruction and the violation of Indigenous rights. With your participation, and with your creative fossil fuel divestment signs, Newmarket will send a loud message to RBC and to any other other banks that seek profit from the destruction of our planet.
You can sign up to participate in the Newmarket RBC Day of Action at the following
link or the QR Code below: https://act.leadnow.ca/21_rbc_doa/newmarket/
The October 29th Day of Action Against Fossil Fuels is an initiative of the Leadnow organization.
To learn more about how banks fund climate catastrophe, please see:
1. A downloadable PDF flyer that can be used to promote this event is available below. Please feel free to share this flyer in person or electronically.
2. You can find the following articles published about the Newmarket RBC demonstration:
3. You can also listen to an episode of the Green Neighbour Podcast dedicated to the divestment movement as well as the October 29th divestment demonstrations.
4. You can download and print some of the RBC logos presented below for the demonstration on October 29th, or for any other demonstration designed to persuade RBC to divest fro the fossil fuel industry.
Will this be your first time demonstrating on behalf of the climate? Wondering what to do?
No problem! Take a look at the Green Neighbour Climate Demonstration Preparation Kit.
Getting Ready to Demonstrate for Climate
Step 1: Make your sign
The first step in any demonstration is making your sign. It's always a good idea to use something that you might have around the house already, like an old cardboard box. Otherwise, dollar stores sell foam core material that is light, yet sturdy enough to hold their shape in the wind. If you take good care of your sign, it should be able to last for years and be used in dozens of demonstrations.
Greta Thunberg's iconic demonstration sign has been used in hundreds of demonstrations throughout dozens of countries. It even traveled with her across the Atlantic ocean!
Step 2: Tell your friends!
It's always a little safer - and a lot more fun - to demonstrate with friends. So go ahead and spread the word, and see if you can get a group of friends to join you for this climate demonstration. You can even share or post the Newmarket Day of Action e-flyer and poster. (See the promotional file attached below.)
Steps 3: Share details of the upcoming action on social media.
Social media is a powerful way to inform other interested individuals about climate actions. The more people who get involved in a climate action, the louder and clearer the message becomes. Sadly, if only a few people show up to an action, then we essentially communicate the opposite message from the one we intended. Effectively, we say, well... it looks like nobody really cares about the climate, or the future of life on Earth... so just keep doing whatever you've been doing. However, if hundreds or thousands of demonstrators raise the alarm, then that helps to inform others about the seriousness of climate change, and it helps to pressure government to take meaningful action on climate.
Step 4: Learn about climate change.
Climate change is real. It's here. It's bad, and it's only going to get worse... but we can still make an incredible difference to the future of this planet, and all the things that live on it, if we take immediate and bold action. There's a lot at stake, and your effectiveness as a climate activist is greatly amplified if you learn about what's happening to the Earth's climate, why it's happening, and what can be done about it.
350.org has a plethora of climate resources to help people learn about climate change, so that individuals can not only come to understand the seriousness of the situation, but also help to convey the urgency of the climate crisis to others. There are of course countless sources of information, but another resource that makes climate change easier to understand is Dr. Katharine Hayhoe's Global Weirding video series.
Steps 5: Capture and share the action on social media.
On the day of the strike, be sure to capture images and video of the strike, and use these images and video as you share your thoughts about the importance of climate action with your followers. Be sure to tag politicians, as well as anyone who hopes to become an elected official - in any political party and at any level of government - within your social media posts. Also, be sure to learn and use any hashtags ssociated with your event, such as #RiseForClimate, #FridaysForFuture, #FossilBanksNoThanks, etc.
When it comes to the environment, we are all neighbours.