50 signatures reached
To: Councillor William Webb, Chairman for Lincolnshire County Council and Cllr Mark Allan, Chairman Pensions Committee.
DIVEST Lincolnshire County Council Pension Fund from Fossil Fuels
• That Lincolnshire County Council Pension Fund Committee immediately freezes any new investments in fossil fuels.
• That within 5 years Lincolnshire CC Pension Fund Committee divests from direct ownership, co-mingled funds, public equities, and corporate bonds that include fossil fuels.
Why is this important?
Lincolnshire - on the front line of global warming.
Climate Change has caused, and is predicted to cause, a much greater risk of flooding and extreme weather but Lincolnshire is uniquely vulnerable to rising sea level. The Council recognises the potential impacts of global warming yet its pension fund invests over £100,000,000 in the very fossil fuel companies that are causing climate change. About 7% of the County’s pension fund, is invested in causing the problem.
Most of the world’s coal, oil and gas reserves must remain in the ground, unburnt if we are to avoid catastrophic global warming. As governments begin to regulate more closely, policy changes and oversupply of fossil fuels globally will see the value of carbon plummet, reserves will become stranded assets; their share prices will collapse. This makes investing in fossil fuels increasingly risky for all stakeholders. Financial experts, including the Bank of England, Goldman Sachs, Standard and Poor's and AXA, have warned of the economic risk that climate change policies pose to fossil fuel companies. Lincolnshire County Council needs to be ahead of the curve by divesting quickly to safeguard the future pensions of all its shareholders.
Lincolnshire County Council recognises that it must do whatever it can to tackle climate change and it has a responsibility to divest from an industry that jeopardises the future of our planet. Yet the short term financial gain that the Pension Fund Committee hopes to achieve comes at the risk of financial loss as well as a cost to people and planet.
We hope Lincolnshire County Council pension trustees are aware of September’s UNEP Finance Initiative Report, Fiduciary Duty in the 21st Century – which concludes that:
"Failing to consider long-term investment value drivers, which include environmental, social and governance issues, in investment practice is a failure of fiduciary duty.”
Instead of fossil fuel investment, the Pension Fund Committee should invest in solutions to climate change, investments that protect pensions and planet, joining The British Medical Association, Bristol City Council and Oxford City Council who have all recently agreed to make the commitment to no direct investment in the fossil fuel industry. Globally Lincolnshire County Council would join over 400 institutions and 2000 individuals with an asset base of $2.6 trillion who are already divesting across the world.
Please sign the petition and encourage others to do so.