Meet Sharklays: what the UK’s biggest fossil bank is really trying to say

These grassroots activists had a little fun spoofing Barclays’s latest ad campaign today. Below is their press release, and be sure to visit the new Sharklays.co.uk also!

 

 

 

(Press Release:)

 

You’ve heard of Barclays, now meet Sharklays, the subvertising alter ego of the high street bank that’s one of the world’s biggest financiers of climate devastation. The Sharklays campaign by a coalition of environmental activists launches on 6th July at midday with a large mock crime scene outside Barclays’ headquarters in Canary Wharf and a spoof website and advert for Sharklays Bank.

 

Not only is Barclays the largest European funder of fossil fuels to the tune of $118bn between 2015-2019, but it has also financed the $35bn expansion of new fossil fuel-related infrastructure. The company’s new climate policy is written in such loose terms that Barclays is allowing itself to continue with very close to ‘business as usual’ over the next 5 years. This approach is simply not an option given that drastic action is needed before 2025 if we are to avoid catastrophic climate and ecological change.

 

The Sharklays crime scene will be complete with tape, forensic scientists, and ‘body shape markers’. Speakers including Matt Wimpress from the Stop Ecocide campaign and Chidi Oti-obihara, former banker and capital financial markets consultant, will explain Barclays’ ecocide crimes, encouraging people to visit and share the Sharklays website and spoof advert in order to learn why they should disinvest in Barclays.

 

Matt Wimpress, from the Stop Ecocide campaign, says:

 

“Ecocide – mass damage and destruction of ecosystems – is not currently a crime, but momentum is growing for a new crime of ecocide to be recognised under international law. Funders, insurers and those issuing permits will all be reluctant to be involved with dangerous industrial practices when such mass damage becomes prosecutable as a criminal offence.

 

The approach of such a law will create a transition to new ways of operating… it will be an essential tool to redirect finance, closing the door to investment in destruction and forcing it to flow in new and healthier directions.”

 

Chidi Oti-obihara, former capital markets financial consultant says:

 

“We demand that Barclays make all their investments in ecocide from fossil fuel investments public knowledge and commit to disinvesting. Barclays have a history of not being open about their inhumane and exploitative financing, repeatedly downplaying their huge role in the slave trade, and they are now downplaying their role in global ecocide. Barclays must tell the truth and act to stop their destructive activities.”

 

This Sharklays campaign is designed to fuel the growing dissatisfaction amongst shareholders and employees that the Barclays leadership is not meaningfully putting the future of our planet at the heart of the company’s practice.

 

 


The UK’s banks can fund our future and aid the global green recovery. Together, we can push the worst fossil banks to change.