Politics

200 MPs calls for pension fund to divest from fossil fuels

palace of westminster

Palace of Westminster Source: By Superikonoskop [CC BY-SA 3.0], from Wikimedia Commons

A cross-party group of 200 current and former MPs has called for the parliamentary pension fund to stop investing in fossil fuel companies.

The group, which includes two-thirds of MPs representing Scottish seats, signed a pledge calling for the fund to review fossil fuel investments and commit to phasing them out on climate change grounds.

The pledge says:

“We believe Members of Parliament have a responsibility to act on climate change, and a unique opportunity to show leadership on climate action, responsible investment and the management of climate risk through addressing the practices of our own pension fund.”

The signatories called on the fund trustees to take seriously the financial risks of climate change:

“We ask they quantify, disclose and review the fund’s investments in carbon-intensive industries, engage in a dialogue with fund members and managers on responsible investment, and commit to phasing out fossil fuel investments over an appropriate time-scale.”

171 of the signatories were current MPs (representing just over a quarter of the House of Commons) and 28 were former MPs.

Of the current MPs there were:

  • 116 Labour (45% of party’s parliamentary total)
  • 29 SNP (83%)
  • 11 Liberal Democrat (92%)
  • 10 Conservative (3%)
  • 1 Green (100%)

Of the 28 former MPs, 14 were Labour, 5 Liberal Democrats, 5 Conservative and 2 SNP.

More details of signatories

The campaign to divest the parliamentary pension fund began in 2014 with a small group of MPs, including the Green Party MP Caroline Lucas.

The group succeeded in 2017 in forcing the fund trustees to disclose its investments for the first time. This revealed large investments in BP and Shell.

Ms Lucas said:

“We’re now a 200 strong cohort of cross-party MPs who believe it is morally indefensible for Parliamentarians to be investing in companies which profit from wrecking our planet. MPs have a duty to take action to prevent the worst of climate change. One simple step we can take is ditching our investments.”

38 replies »

  1. No, PhilipP, we can gauge how desperate you are. I thought the issue was divesting from fossil fuels.

    “Direction of travel”-apart from HSBC?? Or maybe Russia, USA, China, India etc. etc.

    • OK, do tell how your reply relates to the stats I refer to regarding Haringeys funding stats. Have you even consulted them? Thought not.

  2. Interesting, so 70% (7 out of 10 😉 ) don’t support such a ridiculous and meaningless action.

    Good to know you are still a small minority.

    • That’s only if you believe that (of those canvassed) the conservatives are the only people that matter.

      [Typo corrected at poster’s request]

  3. Err, PhilipP, you do realise that most pension fund memberships are a bit like an iceberg, with current staff just a tiny fraction of the whole?

    I would be much more interested if the many, receiving the income from the pension fund, were so interested in virtue signalling. Especially, if, as in normal life, they would be directly impacted by any loss in income and/or security of income. It is unusual for turkeys to vote for Christmas.

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