Fossil Fuel Divestment strategy adopted by Moreland Council
Moreland Council, at their October 2015 meeting, adopted their first fossil fuel divestment strategy. This has been a long time in the planning and advocacy and comes after a successful campaign by Climate Action Moreland and 350Australia.
Moreland Council has proven to be a leader of cities in being pro-active in mitigation and climate adaptation, and in fossil fuel divestment. (see Fossil Fuel Divestment Strategy D15/295053)
Greens Councillor Samantha Ratnam posted this comment to Facebook:
Woohoo! After committing to divest from fossil fuels last year, Moreland Council tonight passed its first ever fossil fuel divestment strategy that will see us actively working to move away from even indirect fossil fuel investments through banks etc. A great step forwarded for the community and planet! Big thanks to all from 350.org and climate action moreland for all your work on this campaign.
Socialist Alliance Councillor Sue Bolton posted this to Facebook. Here she provides details on an amendment that can strengthen the divestment policy. Great to hear that the vote on council was also unanimous!
Moreland council divests from fossil fuel. A big tribute to 350.org and Climate Action Moreland for scoring a victory at the Moreland council meeting last night. 350.org and Climate Action Moreland spearheaded a 2-3 year long campaign for Moreland council to divest from fossil fuel. Last night’s council meeting crossed the final hurdle and decided to divest. the decision was unanimous. Without the grassroots campaign, the councillors would never have decided unanimously to divest.
The three councillors who worked with 350.org on this campaign were myself from Socialist Alliance, and the two Greens councillors Sam Ratnam and Lenka Thompson.
I got an amendment passed to make the policy stronger. The fossil fuel divestment policy recommended to council was only for positive screening ie. rewarding financial institutions that are not investing in fossil fuel. I think that isn’t good enough. There needs to be a penalty for companies investing in fossil fuel. Currently, the non-fossil fuel banks don’t provide all of the services that council needs so it can’t avoid using the services of some banks which invest in fossil fuel. This is the limitation of relying on the market for achieving social and environmental change.
I got an amendment passed that council looks at moving towards negative screening ie. penalising financial institutions which invest in fossil fuel.
This is a great step which Moreland council has made.
However, we have a long way to go to take effective action on climate change. The bushfires raging across Victoria this early in the season should ring alarm bells about climate change.