MADRID – Environmental organizations visited the Madrid Stock Exchange and Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food on Thursday to denounce green washing done at COP25 by some of the “most polluting” companies and banking institutions.
Outside the facilities where the climate summit is taking place, but with the same spirit of seeking solutions to the climate crisis, European organizations Ecologistas en Accion, Friends of the Earth, BankTrack, Corporate Europe Observatory and Gastivists, have denounced the abuses of interest groups of what they have called “fossil capitalism.”
The first stop on the “Toxic Tour” was the Madrid Stock Exchange, where BankTrack activist Lise Mason highlighted the destructive policies of some IBEX 35 companies, the electrical sector and infrastructure, which sponsored large spaces at COP25.
She said the organizations have an “enormous capacity to influence climate negotiations so that they do not undermine their interests,” being “one of the main contributors to the climate crisis,” since they obtain “more than half of the energy electricity produced from the burning of coal and gas.”
The group of European environmentalists continued its journey in the direction of a bank branch in the city, where they stopped to display a banner that read “Fossil banks no, thanks.”
Samuel Martin Sosa, international head of Ecologistas en Accion, described large corporations as a “shadow power” that favors climate change by investing “billions of euros in new fossil projects.”
The tour continued towards Madrid’s Naval Museum, where they were joined by representatives of the NGO Tierraactiva, to symbolically denounce “the power of the global economy that had its origin in the colonization of the New World and the plundering of its resources.”
Tierraactiva member Maria Garcia referred to the “sacrifice zones” created by “copper mining in Chile” and hundreds of murdered environmental leaders throughout the Americas.
The next stop was the Prado Museum, sponsored by a large energy company, which Hector de Prado, coordinator of the Climate and Energy campaign of Friends of the Earth Spain, said “uses cultural and sports institutions to improve its image.”
The tour ended outside the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.
Pascoe Sabido, a member of the Corporate Europe Observatory, criticized the management of the newly relieved European Commissioner for Energy and Climate Action Miguel Arias Cañete.
“Arias Cañete maintained 70% of his meetings with the fossil industry,” he said and added that this “generated clear conflicts of interest between the functions of his position and his performance at the head of it.”