Originally published in ACNS
The Anglican Church of Southern Africa has resolved to study the possibility of withdrawing its investments from companies which exploit fossil fuels.
The church’s Provincial Standing Committee, its top deliberative body between synods, resolved at a meeting on September 17 and 18 to ask its Provincial Trusts Board to investigate the matter and to report to the next meeting of Provincial Synod in 2016.
The resolution, proposed by Bishop Steve Moreo of Johannesburg, said “the burning of fossil fuels is leading to climate change with devastating effects on those most vulnerable.” It noted that Anglican churches in Britain, New Zealand and the United States had already divested.
The resolution approved by the Provincial Standing Committee reads:
This PSC, noting that
1.1 The burning of fossil fuels is leading to climate change with devastating effects on those most vulnerable through drought, floods and sea levels rising.
1.2 The burning of coal poses a severe health risk to those in the geographical area of the power stations.
1.3 There is a growing international movement for faith-based organisations to divest themselves of their trust investments in fossil fuels, including the Church of England, the Episcopal Church and the Church of Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia.
2.1 In principle, to ask the Provincial Trusts Board to consider this proposal and, if agreed, to explore the best way to do this and to report to Synod 2016.
2.2 To call on world leaders to make meaningful changes in this regard at COP and to consider the generations to come.
2.3 To support the new UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) which will replace the Millennium Development Goals.