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TD Rememberance Committee Release:
VANCOUVER - Mourners gathered to mark the untimely passing of TD Securities with a public funeral at its downtown Vancouver location. TD Securities died in its Toronto home last Monday, after being attacked by its pet black snake.
In an emotional display (See video), mourners gave their respects to the fallen bank with speeches, and a communal burial ceremony, offering members of the public an opportunity to mark this devastating loss. Mourners remembered TD for its key role as a leader in supporting the development of fossil fuel infrastructure and extractive industries.
Mourners, who were primarily from the local group the TD Remembrance Committee (TDRC), spoke to this legacy, highlighting TD’s critical role as a funder of the Kinder Morgan Pipeline, approved last week by Justin Trudeau. This pipeline will:
Add seven times as many tankers per month to Vancouver’s narrow Burrard Inlet harbor, posing a direct risk to the fragile coastal ecosystem;
Threaten thousands of jobs in the coastal economy;
Violate Indigenous land rights; and
Unleash global warming pollution 56 times the rate of the entire City of Vancouver.
Mourners declared they would remember TD’s commitment to the climate crisis, celebrating TD as an, oft misunderstood visionary in its enduring support of US energy independence.
“TD was willing to take risks that no other company would,” said Sarah, a member of TDRC. Sara went on to cite the unpopular stance TD took in supporting the recently rerouted Dakota Access Pipeline, which TD funded upwards of $360 million. The pipeline, which will carry 570,000 barrels of oil a day, drew the attention of the world when tens of thousands of land and water protectors traveled to support the Standing Rock Souix Nation in their vow to stop the pipeline from crossing their ancestral lands.
“TD just wouldn’t be bullied,” Jeremy, a lead TDRC organizer contributed, saying that even when organizations like Amnesty International documented wide scale human rights abuses perpetrated by local police and pipeline guards at Standing Rock, “TD didn’t divest.” Water and land protectors were met with dogs, pepper spray, mace, rubber-coated bullets, shock grenades, and a mine-resistant armoured vehicle, among others.
RBC and Scotiabank, also leading funders of the climate crisis, have committed to increase their extractive industry funding portfolios to ensure that companies are not impacted in the wake of TD Securities’ death. Citizen groups like TDRC have also begun funding drives.
Jay, a community member who was also in attendance at the funeral with his 5 year-old daughter, held a view quite different from the TDRC members, stating that “the Trudeau government, Kinder Morgan, and banks with similar portfolios and funding practices might have something to learn from the events in North Dakota.” Jay went on to suggest that while TD’s death is publicly being reported as a, “freak pet accident,” some believe that it might actually be directly “linked to TD’s role in funding extractive industries.” Jay suggested that everyone who held accounts with the now defunct TD Securities might consider moving their funds over to a local credit union.
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