A council has become the first in NI to call for its workers’ pension fund to divest from fossil fuels. Newry Mourne and Down voted in favour of the move on Monday night. The motion called on fund managers to withdraw millions of pounds invested in oil and gas companies in five years. The NI Local Government Superannuation Committee runs the pension fund for 118,000 public sector workers like civil servants, teachers and council employees. Campaigners have claimed it has around £155m directly invested in companies like BP and gas firm Centrica – with a further £193m indirectly invested in fossil fuel interests.
BBC 5th March 2019 read more »
A group of powerful HSBC shareholders havewritten to the bank’s CEO, John Flint, urging him to close a loophole in its energy policy that allows the lender to bankroll coal projects in certain emerging markets. Investment management firms Schroders, EdenTree and stewardship provider Hermes EOS have also called on HSBC to impose a ban on corporate loans, underwriting and advisory services to bank clients that are highly dependent on coal. The letter, which was coordinated by campaign group ShareAction, stresses that HSBC must adopt a “clear, timebound plan” to phase out its existing exposure to the dirty fuel. HSBC was commended by activist groups including Greenpeace last year after releasing an energy policy that aimed to phase out lending for new coal-fired power plants in high income countries and cut its commitment to oil sands “over time”. But that policy also left a loophole that allows the bank to finance new coal-powered plants in three countries – Bangladesh, Vietnam and Indonesia – until 2023. Flint defended the move at last year’s annual meeting, saying that it was a “short window” of time and covered areas where many people “don’t have access to any electricity” and there may not be a reasonable alternative.
Guardian 6th March 2019 read more »
FT 6th March 2019 read more »
An international group of over 50 green, ethical, and co-operative banks has this week launched a new Climate Change Commitment that will see many of its members pledge to align their carbon footprint and investment portfolios with the goals of the Paris Agreement. The Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV) held its annual summit in Vancouver late last month and yesterday announced that nearly 30 of its members have signed up to a new Climate Change Commitment, dubbed the 3C initiative.
Business Green 5th March 2019 read more »