I cannot stand by and do nothing while Barclays fund the collapse of society.
Environmental protesters have smashed the windows of a Glasgow bank as they demand Barclays cut its ties with fossil fuel firms.
Wearing safety goggles and Kevlar gloves, the Extinction Rebellion protesters broke the glass of the bank’s Clyde Place Quay branch ahead of a demonstration outside the company’s outlet later on Monday.
The window panes of the building at its multi-million pound Glasgow campus had been broken and three protesters held up banners declaring “this is an intervention” and calling on the company to “stop funding Rosebank” in images released by the campaign group.
Rosebank is an oil and gas field around 100 miles off the coast of the Shetland Island which First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was urged to help bring to a halt after she was approached by a climate protester at Cop27 in Sharm El-Sheikh last week.
The Glasgow protesters said the field had more than 500 million barrels of oil, and claim Barclays have provided Norwegian state-owned firm Equinor with $2.46 billion of backing since 2015.
In footage released by the group, police liaison officers can be seen at the bank with police vans and cars arriving as they held their banners.
One Extinction Rebellion protester said they were taking the action because “Barclays are finding the destruction of our planet, and they are funding the destruction of our children’s future”.
“I cannot stand by and do nothing while Barclays fund the collapse of society,” she said.
Alex Cochrane, of Extinction Rebellion Scotland, said that the bank were the “biggest funders of fossil fuel in Europe”.
“Their greed is exploiting and creating a future of famine, displaced people and global suffering,” he said.
“We all know we need to wean ourselves off fossil fuels. We all know the climate crisis is already hitting us yet Barclays still refuses to do the right thing for us. For all our sakes, they must stop using our money to fund fossil fuels.”
The group claimed the action in Scotland’s biggest city followed in the footsteps of suffragettes and the Ploughshares movement, “using nonviolent direct action and causing damage to property to prevent and draw attention to greater damage”.
Barclays and Police Scotland have been approached for comment.
Dan Barker is a reporter with PA Scotland.