New research, published 5th November 2012 has shown that pollution from the highly destructive tar sand extraction process is being spread across a wider area than ever thought possible as toxins are being found in river, fish, rain and snow.

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) is the UK’s biggest financer of the fossil fuel industry, including the Canadian tar sands, which have been described as the most environmentally destructive project on the planet.  Oil from tar sand production releases three times more emissions than conventional oil, and local indigenous populations have long reported serious health impacts.

Paul Daly, Corporate Accountability Campaigner at Friends of the Earth Scotland said:

“As oil prices continue to soar, we are seeing a worrying move to extract oil from sources that were previously viewed as too costly – both financially and environmentally. We now see predatory oil companies moving into the Arctic and tar sands.  These companies are putting profit before all else, with fleeting regard for human rights, our natural resources and the environment.

“Extraction of oil from the Canadian tar sands and other high risk sources is made possible by investment from banks such as RBS.  As a publicly owned bank, RBS must demonstrate greater stewardship through its investment policies.

“We call on RBS, as a taxpayer owned bank, to stop providing finance to companies exploiting the tar sand and start leading the transition to a low carbon future ”


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Press Office, Friends of the Earth Scotland: 0131 243 2700

Notes to Editors:

For more on our RBS campaign: http://foe-scotland.org.uk/cleanuprbsFor more on Canadian tar sands: http://foe-scotland.org.uk/tarsandsResearch finding contamination (including a graphic picture of a fish with a tumour): http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/Oilsands+research+confirmed/7497652/…Friends of the Earth Scotland is * Scotland’s leading environmental campaigning organisation * An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland * Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 77 national member groups, and some 5,000 local activist groups – covering every continent. www.foe-scotland.org.uk