Queuing Up To Switch Banks

Queue of people wanting to close ANZ bank accounts, Melbourne, Australia, October 2013

Image courtesy 350.org Australia

What are these people waiting for?

They’re queuing up to close their bank accounts.


Because they discovered that their money in the bank was being used to wreak environmental damage.

At the start of the (Australian) financial year, I wrote about how your money in the bank – if it’s the wrong bank – can be used to finance the exploitation of fossil fuels (that is, coal, oil and ‘natural’ gas).  That’s right: the money you have in the bank can be used by others to make our climate crisis even worse.

But I also wrote about what I’d done to stop my money in the bank being used to wreck our climate.

Now others in Australia are starting to switch banks too.

A couple of days ago, people lined up in the Bourke Street Mall in the centre of Melbourne (Australia) to close their accounts with the ANZ Bank.

ANZ chose fossil fuels so we chose another bank , Melbourne, October 2013

Image courtesy Market Forces and 350.org Australia

The ANZ bank:


  • is the biggest investor in coal power in Australia
  • is the biggest lender for the massive expansion of coal and gas ports on the Australian east coast
  • continues to finance fossil fuel projects, despite pressure from customers and environmental groups to cease doing so.

All this mining, transport and burning of coal and gas is wrecking our farms, water, health, local environments – including the Great Barrier Reef…and our climate.

So people are cutting up their bank cards and switching to better banks.

Mature man cutting up ANZ bank card, Melbourne, October 2013

Image courtesy 350.org.au

Here are the customers who made the switch telling you in their own words:

How do you join in?

More customers of the big 4 Australian banks are lining up to switch to a bank that doesn’t bankroll global warming and environmental destruction.  For example:

And more bank switch events are planned around Australia on 14 December 2013.

If you’re keen to make the switch, Market Forces has produced a handy guide to help you.

Will you make the switch?  Leave your comments in the Reply box below …or send me a voice message by clicking on the tab on the right.

Till next time…be gentle to yourself and our world!

UPDATE: Market Forces has updated how ANZ and Australia’s other big banks are doing in terms of financing fossil fuels. [September 2016]