350.org Reacts to Church of England Divestment Announcement
Global - The Church of England announced its decision to divest from fossil fuel companies by 2023, should these companies not align themselves with the Paris Agreement or fail to take steps towards the transition to a low-carbon economy. The 2023 deadline is later than previous suggestions to divest by 2020, with the Church planning to spend this time to influence and advocate reform among these companies. The announcement comes only three days after the Pope’s strong call to action on climate from a two-day conference held in Vatican with experts and climate pressure groups.
May Boeve, 350.org Executive Director, issued the following statement in response:
“The announcement by the Church of England is very good news, and it’s in line with the tidal wave of commitments amongst religious groups divesting from the fossil fuel industry. The decision adds to the real and growing pressure on fossil fuel companies. However, waiting until 2023 would mean another five years of money still invested in fossil fuels which could be instead used to support renewable energy and low-carbon projects. The fossil fuel industry had plenty of opportunities to redeem itself; it never did. They need to be stopped now.”
In two months’ time, tens of thousands around the world will be joining one of the Rise for Climate mobilizations, where communities will be calling on elected officials and decision-makers at all levels to take meaningful and immediate climate action for a fossil free world.
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350 is the red line for human beings, the most important number on the planet. The most recent science tells us that unless we can reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to 350 parts per million, we will cause huge and irreversible damage to the earth. But solutions exist. All around the world, a movement is building to take on the climate crisis, to get humanity out of the danger zone and below 350. This movement is massive, it is diverse, and it is visionary. We are activists, scholars, and scientists. We are leaders in our businesses, our churches, our governments, and our schools. We are clean energy advocates, forward-thinking politicians, and fearless revolutionaries. And we are united around the world, driven to make our planet livable for all who come after us.