Left Menu
Development News Edition

UPDATE 1-London, New York mayors urge cities to divest from fossil fuels

UPDATE 1-London, New York mayors urge cities to divest from fossil fuels
File photo Image Credit: Twitter (@SadiqKhan)

The mayors of New York City and London have urged other cities to divest their pension funds from fossil fuel producers, as they introduced a toolkit to help cities shift investments away from companies that drive climate change. New York City said in January 2018 that over five years it would remove fossil fuel investments from its public pension funds, which then had $189 billion in assets under management.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan pledged to do so in his 2016 election campaign. Investors with $11 trillion in assets under management have pledged to divest from fossil fuels, campaign group 350.org said in a September report.

"We need all cities to act now to help protect our planet for future generations," Khan said in a statement, which accompanied an advice guide for other cities on how to alter their pension investments. It contained case studies of disinvestment efforts in Melbourne, Berlin, and Stockholm as well as New York and London.

"I'm calling on every major city in the world to follow suit," the mayor said, noting that "taking action on divestment is not only achievable but absolutely necessary". Archbishop Desmond Tutu, of South Africa, and former U.S. Vice President Al Gore also reiterated their support for divestment at a meeting in Cape Town on Tuesday.

"Any organization committed to operating responsibly in this new decade has a moral imperative to stop participating in financing the destruction of human civilization's future," they said in a statement. London reduced the share of fossil fuel holdings in its pension funds from 1% in May 2016 to 0.2% by September 2019, according to a spokeswoman for the mayor's office.

The funds are controlled independently of the mayor by the London Pension Fund Authority, which had 6.5 billion pounds ($8.5 billion) in assets under management at the end of September 2019, according to the spokeswoman. New York's divestments are "still in progress", said Friederike Hanisch, who manages the C40 Divest/Invest Forum of 14 cities that have pledged to divest from fossil fuels.

She said divestment efforts were expected to improve rather than hurt returns for investors. None of the C40 cities that have divested their pension funds have seen worse performance and some have done better by removing fossil fuels, C40 said.

"We don't expect it to have a negative effect at all on the income of pension funds," Hanisch said. "If anything we expect it to have a positive impact." So far, a growing fossil fuel divestment push has not substantially impacted fossil fuel company share prices or reduced carbon emissions, economists Robert Pollin and Tyler Hansen of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, said in a 2018 paper.

But the push is effectively raising awareness of growing climate risks, they said. Assets in funds that have committed to divest from fossil fuels were worth $36 billion that year, the report found.

Some coal, oil, and gas companies have said they see the divestment campaign as a "material risk" that could make it harder to source investment. Paul Fisher, a fellow at the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership at Cambridge University, said the city divestment push was "part of a general trend" toward shifting money from fossil fuels and that trend "is making fossil fuel companies sit up and take notice".

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Download The Devdiscourse News App for Latest News.



Top 10 Fake News, Myths and Realities on 2019 Novel Coronavirus COVID 19

With nearly 1500 deaths by January 14 and around 65,000 infections in China, the Novel Coronavirus 2019 has become one of the worst health epidemics of the 21st Century. However, 8,573 people have been cured but the rumor mongers are a...

Handling fake news Infodemic in time of Coronavirus epidemic

Social media has provided a platform where everybody can disseminate his her views without any supervision. Its excellent if the message is genuine but misinformation is equally disastrous. Health is such a topic where every Tom and Harry c...

Sentiment Analysis on Budget 2020: Long shot for solution to economic worries?

Industries and individuals alike had high expectations from the government to take tangible steps but the budget 2020 seems to have failed expectations....

How can technology help the future of mobility?

More than a billion people or one-third of the global rural population lacked access to all-season roads and transport services in 2016, subsequently hindering the socio-economic development....


Latest News

Blues trade for Canadiens D Scandella

The St. Louis Blues acquired defensemen Marco Scandella from the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday in exchange for a 2020 second-round draft pick and a conditional fourth-round pick in 2021. This will be Scandellas third team this season. He pl...

Rangers carry momentum into matchup with Blackhawks

The New York Rangers have played their way into the outer fringes of the postseason picture in the Eastern Conference, while the Chicago Blackhawks appear to be playing their way out of the West. The Original Six rivals look to improve thei...

Brazil's Bolsonaro offers credit for indigenous farmers as he pushes to open their lands

Brazils President Jair Bolsonaro on Tuesday said he was pushing a bill through Congress to allow commercial mining and agriculture on protected indigenous lands, as he met with tribal leaders to announce a credit line to support indigenous ...

UPDATE 1-China's Hubei province reports 132 new coronavirus deaths on Feb 18

The number of deaths in Chinas central Hubei province from the coronavirus outbreak rose by 132 to 1,921 as of Tuesday, the provinces health commission said in a statement on its website on Wednesday.There were a further 1,693 cases detecte...

Give Feedback