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Film

Mark Ruffalo, Leonardo DiCaprio and more sign letter protesting Canada's GasLink pipeline

A long list of prominent celebrities from the acting, sport and music worlds have signed a letter that has been sent to City National Bank’s parent company, Royal Bank of Canada, to defund the divisive Coastal GasLink gas pipeline. 

The letter was sent “in solidarity with Wet’suwet’en land defenders”, and it’s demanding that the Royal Bank of Canada immediately withdraw funding for the 416-mile gas pipeline. The project is planned to be built through “sacred and sensitive ecosystems” in historical Wet’suwet’en land in British Columbia, Canada, without the consent of the area’s hereditary chiefs. 

Over 65 Hollywood A-listers have signed the letter, including Leonardo DiCaprio, Mark Ruffalo, Taika Waititi, Jane Fonda, Scarlett Johansson, Susan Sarandon and Robert Downey Jr. The letter has been sent to the Royal Bank of Canada, and it wastes no time in getting to the crux of the matter. 

City National Bank is labelled the “Bank of the Stars”, and the subsidiary of the Royal Bank of Canada is the lead financier behind the Coastal GasLink pipeline. 

A portion of the letter reads: “Stop funding fossil fuel expansion. CNB and RBC must end the funding of extreme fossil fuel expansion projects, specifically fracking and tar sands. The Alberta tar sands are exacerbating the climate crisis and why Canada is unable to meet its international climate commitments as agreed to at COP 26.”

Elsewhere it states: “City National Bank’s parent company Royal Bank of Canada is bankrolling the climate crisis and violating the rights of Indigenous Peoples.”

The letter maintains, “Despite claiming to be a leader in climate-conscious banking, since acquiring CNB in 2015, RBC has spent over $160 billion to become one of the world’s largest and most aggressive financiers of tar sands, fossil fuel extraction, and transport.”

You can read the full letter and list of signatories here.

Royal Bank of Canada is yet to respond to the letter.