UPDATE March 17, 2016: This week another Honduran environmental activist was tragically murdered. Nelson García worked alongside Berta Caceres trying to stop the disastrous Agua Zarca mega-dam in Honduras.
In the wake of this news and thanks to pressure from over 135,000 SumOfUs members, the FMO Development bank -- one of the project’s largest investors -- suspended all disbursements into all projects in Honduras, including the Agua Zarca project.
This is huge news -- but we haven’t won yet. FMO’s CEO and other executives are due to travel to Honduras to determine whether or not it will continue investing in Agua Zarca. This visit is a unique opportunity to come together and tell FMO do the right thing: pull out of the Agua Zarca dam or face a global public backlash.
Note: An earlier version of this petition that contained some inaccuracies was sent by mistake to our Canadian members. Please find the corrected language below and accept our apologies for any misunderstanding caused as a result.
Today we mourn the tragic assassination of Berta Caceres, a prominent Honduran indigenous rights activist.
Berta stood up to corporations and helped delay the construction of the Agua Zarca dam which, if built, would destroy her community's land and the Gualcarque River in Honduras. The dam was delayed due to protests for so long that investors started pulling from the project.
As a result, Berta became a target for corporate spying, intimidation, and ultimately murder, simply because money wasn’t being made.
This is why we are calling on the largest remaining investor of the dam, FMO (a Dutch Development bank) to join the Chinese investors Sinohydro and the International Finance Corporation in withdrawing financial support for this project immediately.
Ask the FMO bank to withdraw investment from the Agua Zarca project.
According to FMO’s own website, the bank has a long-standing commitment to environmental and social sustainability. This commitment alone should have led it to stay away from the Agua Zarca dam, proposed to be built in sacred indigenous land and the Gualcarque River, but now FMO is complicit in Berta’s assassination.
51% of FMO’s shares are held by the Dutch government. Unless FMO is prepared to face both a domestic and international outcry, it cannot afford to see through its investment in the Agua Zarca dam.
Let FMO know that its reputation is at stake, and tell it to withdraw its investment from the Agua Zarca dam.
Since the right-wing coup against Manuel Zelaya in 2009, activists have been systematically persecuted by the Honduran government, making Honduras one of the most dangerous places in the world to be an activist or community organiser.
This was certainly true for Berta. Just last year she won the Goldman Environmental award for her successful campaign against the Agua Zarcao dam, and she has now paid with her life.
This isn’t the first time that the SumOfUs community has stood with brave activists defending their homes, lands and livelihoods against corporate giants. Last year, 160,000 of us came together to support Máxima Acuña, the Peruvian anti-mining activist. We were able to send Maxima's closest allies to Newmont Mining's HQ, where they forced its CEO to say that the mine will not go ahead without a community consultation.
Berta’s death hurts so many of us who want to see a fair and equitable world. To honour her memory, let’s ensure that resistance to the dam lives on, and force FMO out of this unethical deal!
Call on FMO to withdraw its investments from the Agua Zarco dam now and protect sacred indigenous land
Berta Cáceres, Honduran human rights and environment activist, murdered, The Guardian, March 3rd 2016
Berta Cáceres, Honduran Activist, killed, CNN, March 4th 2016