Seattle dropped Wells Fargo over the Dakota Access Pipeline — then couldn’t find another bank

Seattle dropped Wells Fargo over the Dakota Access Pipeline — then couldn’t find another bank
Seattle voted last year to stop doing business with Wells Fargo over the bank's involvement with the Dakota Access Pipeline, but the city could not find another bank. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The Seattle City Council voted last year to stop doing business with Wells Fargo because the bank funds the Dakota Access Pipeline, but the city may have gotten ahead of itself.

According to KUOW-FM, the city couldn’t find another bank and now will have to sign on for another three years with Wells Fargo.

“The reality is, none wanted to participate and bid for our services, and given the time it takes to shift to a new service, we felt it was prudent for the city to move forward,” City Finance Director Glen Lee said.

What’s the story?

In February 2017, the Seattle City Council voted unanimously to cut ties with Wells Fargo. The city cited Wells Fargo’s role in the Dakota Access Pipeline project, as well as the scandal over the bank opening accounts without customer knowledge as reasons for the move.

The move was celebrated at the time, and attendees at the city council meeting stood and cheered when the vote was complete.

“We’ve seen the power of the ruling elite has limits, and those limits are determined by how powerful our movements are in the 99 percent,” Councilwoman Kshama Sawant said after the city’s vote.

As it turns out, numerous large banks have ties to the Dakota Access Pipeline, including some of the world’s largest banks, and Seattle struggled to find a financial institution that could meet all the city’s needs.

So, Seattle’s attempted boycott will take a back seat for the next three years, and city officials will explore other options during that time, such as a municipal public bank.

Dakota Access Pipeline controversy

The Dakota Access Pipeline is a 1,200-mile project that, when completed, is designed to transport as many as 570,000 barrels of crude oil from North Dakota to Illinois each day, according to Time.

Since it was initially proposed in 2014, the project has been protested by Native American tribes and environmental groups, who raise concerns about the impact of the pipeline on drinking water sources and climate change.

(H/T: Hot Air)

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