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Mets Fans and PA Jumaane Williams Demand Mets Strike Out Citi for its Role in Climate Crisis
Citi, which has stadium-naming rights until 2028, is the second-largest financier of fossil fuels;
Activists slammed Citi claiming the bank is “ torching our planet every day and giving capital to industries that do not care about our well-being”.
NEW YORK, NY – Today, around 20 Climate advocates and Mets fans were joined by the NYC Public Advocate Jumaane Williams to demand that Steve Cohen, the owner of the Mets, end its contract with Citi, one of the largest banks in the US and the world.
The advocates who gathered for a rally at City Hall Park cited the bank’s role in financing polluters and profiting from climate chaos. Mets fans did not shy away from their support for their beloved team, they showed up in Mets jerseys and Mets hats, while Jumaanee Williams opted for a Mets jersey with the campaign’s hashtag #MetsDropCiti.
Citi is the second largest fossil fuel financier in the US. Between 2016 and 2021 it invested $285 billion in fossil fuels. It is among the biggest financial backers of the world’s worst polluters including ExxonMobil, BP, and Saudi Aramco. Citi is also the biggest coal funder outside of China, and the biggest investor in fossil fuel projects in the Amazon. Citi also has Russia’s biggest US bank presence, including Russian oil and gas.
Climate advocates have been pressuring Citi to stop financing new or expanding fossil fuel projects, but so far the bank has refused to publish a credible plan explaining how it will transition away from fossil fuels.
“The Mets represent an incredible spirit, history, and institution, and are a tremendous value to New Yorkers. The practices of Citibank, though, don’t represent the values of the Mets or of our city, and we must demand better,” said Public Advocate Jumaane D. Williams. Citi is funding the companies fueling a climate crisis that has hit our shores and has devastated the Mets Queens home directly through Hurricane Ian, Superstorm Sandy, and other weather events. Yet Citi is among the biggest financial backers of the world’s worst polluters. This is about much more than the naming rights to a stadium – It’s about the damage being done by these companies and the bank willing to finance them. If Citi refuses to end its toxic relationship with the fossil fuel industry, the Mets should end their partnership with Citi. We can aim to both win the World Series and protect the world’s climate at the same time.”
“The Mets do more than just win games, they build communities,” said Queens resident and climate activist Jeremy Maldonado. “I grew up going to Mets games with friends, going to those games inspired me to do better in my community. But seeing the Mets partnered with Citi as it continues to make terrible decisions for the planet makes me really upset. I’m from Ozone Park and work in Far Rockaway, these communities are really at risk of flooding. It is so catastrophic that when it floods people are not able to commute to work. I love the Mets, but banks like Citi are torching our planet every day and giving capital to industries that do not care about our well-being.”
“I’m a Queens resident and long life Mets fan. Citi should know better than to fund fossil fuels, and if they don’t they have no place in our stadium. Queens is very much at risk of floods because of climate change, including where the Mets play which is a Zone 1 evacuation zone. How are you going to play baseball if the stadium is flooded?,” said Eric Arnum, 350 NYC.
New Yorkers know firsthand the impacts of climate change, from Superstorm Sandy to Hurricane Ian. New Yorkers, many of them Mets fans, are facing the brunt of climate chaos that is being financed by banks like Citi. Forty-three New Yorkers died during superstorm Sandy alone, and many remain vulnerable to climate change.
Mets fans and climate activists also launched an online petition urging Cohen to drop Citi and instead choose a sponsor that aligns with the team’s values.