Divestment

Good news!

UNISON, one of the largest trade union groups in the UK, recently voted for divestment! Check this link to read more about it and see what the next steps are.

The UK's second largest city, Birmingham, has just voted to divest its pension funds from fossil fuels, which frees up £393 million for reinvestment into local housing and clean energy. The motion also puts pressure on the larger West Midlands Pension Fund to divest as well.

The support for the international divestment movement has been staggering. In May 2015, Axa, the global insurance giant, has committed itself to a tripling of its investments into green technologies whilst simultaneously divesting a whopping £350,000,000 of its assets from coal companies, and its fund management arm recently committed to divesting a further £157 million from coal.

And in June 2015, Norway pledged its commitment to divesting from coal investments from its sovereign wealth fund: around a whopping $8 billion! The move will affect over 122 companies worldwide. This comes as the largest divestment pledge yet, and with it comes hope that it will set the tone for future divestments of equal or greater measure.

The power of the students has made a resounding impact on Oxford University, too. The university's decision not to divest was met with opposing demands from students, staff and alumni; notably, some of the latter of which, including George Monbiot, were preparing to hand back their degrees if a different decision was not made. Following this, however, a partial U-turn has been made on divestment pledges from a full rejection to a commitment not to invest further coal and tar sands, but no direct commitment to divest from fossil fuels entirely. Baby steps...

In September 2016, London Borough's Waltham Forest's pension fund committee has become the first UK public authority to announce its commitment to go 100% fossil free. All £23.9 million, that was invested in fossil fuel companies, will be divested to invest in sustainable energy, transport and housing.

49 British universities are divesting from fossil fuels, which is over a quarter of the total number in Britain, and totals £10.84 billion that has been committed to divest from fossil fuels.

Read more on divestment...

You can visit sites such as Fossil Free and 350.org for more information on the fossil fuel divestment movement.

Take action

Find a campaign to divest your local council

Find your university campaign with People and Planet

Trade union briefing on divestment.

Ask your MP to support the campaign to divest the Parliamentary pension fund from fossil fuels.

Find out more about how you can divest your bank account, energy supplier and pension fund from fossil fuels.