The city of Seattle voted Tuesday to officially cut ties with banking giant Wells Fargo to protest the company’s involvement with the Dakota Access pipeline project. Seattle’s nine-member City Council chose unanimously to divest $3 billion from the bank, the city’s main financial services provider, when its current contract is up next year. Mayor Ed Murray has already agreed to sign the measure.
Wells Fargo is one of 17 investors in the Dakota Access project, a $3.8 billion, 1,172-mile pipeline that would carry oil from North Dakota to refineries in Illinois. It also administers a line of credit to Energy Transfer Partners, the Dallas-based company behind the pipeline.
The vote came just hours after the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced that it would approve the final permit for the Dakota Access pipeline — dealing a blow to Native American activists and environmentalists who had been protesting the project’s route near the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe reservation for months.