Featured Image Credit: Hannah Bailey
Our friends at Protect Our Winters UK have launched an exciting and essential new campaign. It’s called Divest The Dirt. What’s it all about? Well, in short, local government pensions alone currently hold investments of nearly £10 billion in fossil fuels. All that money that’s being saved for the future? Yes, in instances like this, it’s pretty much helping to destroy that very same future. The POW campaign aims to highlight the facts around fossil fuel investment, build up public awareness, and demand change.
At the time of writing, 75% of local UK councils have declared a climate crisis. This has happened at the same time as billions of pounds getting built up in pension investment funds connected to the fossil fuel industry. With COP26 on the horizon, POW UK are looking to shine the spotlight on this important issue and, what’s more, try and do something about it.
“By investing in fossil fuels these funds are quite literally fuelling the climate crisis”
If you’re not familiar with Protect Our Winters UK, they’re an outdoors climate action charity that’s all about giving passionate outdoorsy people the tools to become effective climate advocates. This vital campaign is all about joining the dots between getting dirty outdoors (good) and our taxpayer money getting really dirty (bad).
According to Make Money Matter, there’s about £2.6 trillion in UK pensions alone; a lot of which goes toward funding harmful industries like fossil fuels, tobacco, and arms. By investing in fossil fuels these funds are quite literally fuelling the climate crisis and undermining local, national, and international efforts to respond to the ‘code red’ climate emergency facing our planet.
Divest The Dirt is a campaign about, you guessed, divestment. Divestment is simple. It essentially boils down to moving money from one place to another. The dream scenario here is to shift our investments from dirty, climate-destroying, industries like fossil fuels to sustainable stuff in the renewables sector. So far, 18 local government pension funds in the UK have made either full or partial divestment commitments. Probably time that the rest join them, hey? You have the power to help make it happen.
Find out more about this campaign, and how you can ask your local council to #DivestTheDirt at www.protectourwinters.uk/dirt