East African Crude Oil Pipeline Insurance – Worldwide coordinated action targeting Marsh Mc Lennan

  • On Tuesday, 9th of May, the #StopEACOP coalition members held a coordinated day of action asking the broker Marsh Mc Lennan to pull back its support for the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP).
  • The actions occurred in London, Paris, New York, Brussels, Madrid and Kampala, in front of the broker’s offices and online.
  • The goal of the activists was to ask Marsh McLennan to publicly justify its support for EACOP and ultimately force them to withdraw from the project.

Context 

For months, NGOs, associations and climate justice activists have regularly targeted Marsh regarding its support of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project. For recall, Marsh has a significant role as it is the insurance broker for the project. More concretely, in February 2023, human rights and environmental groups based in Uganda, Tanzania and the United States filed a formal complaint alleging that Marsh was violating OECD corporate social responsibility guidelines by acting as an insurance broker for the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project.

TotalEnergies is currently struggling to convince investors to support its Uganda-Tanzania pipeline project. Indeed, the movement has taken a major step forward with the announcement of a further postponement of funding for EACOP. While in October 2022, the holders of the giant oil pipeline project led by TotalEnergies and the Chinese company CNOOC in East Africa were hoping to secure its financing in Q1 2023, a new deadline has been announced: “by the end of the year”. But Marsh is still in! And this is why activists worldwide will keep levelling up the pressure against the broker.

East African Crude Oil Pipeline map. Image credit: EACOP

Standard Chartered Plc also recently announced that it would not finance the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project, joining over 20 financial institutions and insurers that have opted out of financing the controversial pipeline. That decision, which follows mounting pressure from the StopEACOP campaign, is particularly significant as the bank had previously confirmed that it was undertaking due diligence on financing the $5 billion project. In response to public pressure, the London-based bank clarified that it is not involved in the project’s financing.

“The uproar against Marsh for their involvement in such a clearly harmful project should serve as their moral compass. This is the role that StopEACOP activists around the world continue to play for corporations who are otherwise unable to see beyond profits. If it were not for the tenacity and courage of all those opposed to this destructive project and others like it, corporations would ravage the planet and our communities as they see fit. Marsh must allow itself to be morally guided by our demands and drop EACOP, or it will risk marking itself as an enemy of humanity.”Zaki Mamdoo, StopEACOP Campaign Coordinator

Author: Bryan Groenendaal

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