By Aric Jenkins
February 8, 2017

The Seattle City Council unanimously voted to end its relationship with Wells Fargo in protest of the bank’s lending to the Dakota Access Pipeline project.

As a result of the council’s 9-0 vote, Seattle will decline a 2018 contract renewal for financial services and halt investments in Wells Fargo securities for at least three years. “Other business practices” played a role in the council’s decision as well, CBS News reports.

The move is in response Seattle’s desire to work with a “more socially responsible bank” that reflects the city’s values. Seattle is the first city in the country to take such measures in protest of the Dakota Access Pipeline, which the Army approved the construction of on Tuesday — the same day the council cast its vote.

Wells Fargo is one of 17 banks financing the Pipeline’s construction. Of the $2.5 billion total the project is receiving from these institutions, Wells Fargo is providing $120 million.

Wells Fargo stands to lose roughly $3 billion in business as a result of Seattle’s vote. The move was met with applause throughout council chambers upon its announcement.

Wells Fargo issued a statement after the ordinance passed: “While we are disappointed that the city has decided to end our 18-year relationship, we stand ready to support Seattle with its financial services needs in the future.”

 

 

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