Investing for Life: Fossil Fuels are Not Healthy for Children and Other Living Things

Read the press release about this action online.

The commitment of the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship to prevent war flows from a belief in the dignity and worth of human life and of creation itself. Because the welfare of our species is intimately bound up with the welfare of all living creatures and the ecosystem as a whole, we recognize the urgent need to act to mitigate global climate change. Without an immediate and significant reduction in our use of fossil fuels, we foresee the prospect of violent climate-related conflict for basic survival: wars over access to clean water, breathable air, safe food and diminishing land.

We agree with Pope Francis who said in his recent encyclical on climate change, Laudato Si’, that underlying the division and conflict between people is a breach in our relationship with the world:

“If we no longer speak the language of fraternity and beauty in our relationship with the world, our attitude will be that of masters, consumers, ruthless exploiters, unable to set limits on their immediate needs. By contrast, if we feel intimately united with all that exists, then sobriety and care will well up spontaneously.” (Laudato Si’ pp. 11)

We are all implicated in the daily use of fossil fuels and we commit ourselves to changing both our consumer and investment behavior. We lift up our concern for the impact of climate change on those who live in poverty and those who have been uprooted from their homes already. Mindful of the many families whose income is now dependent on fossil fuel extraction, we recognize the need for the development of new sources of income through creating alternative energy industries.

Addressing this crisis will require an array of strategies that will test our conviction and our creativity, requiring an unprecedented mobilization of human genius, unity and love.We applaud work to reduce carbon use by individuals, churches and institutions, as well as all other genuine efforts to help abate climate change and the violence it will bring.

For us as a peacemaking organization, turning away from fossil fuels is a peacemaking issue. For us, to follow Christ means to refrain from profiting from investments that we believe will lead to the rawest forms of human violence for survival.

On September 21, 2015, the International Day of Peace, the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship announces our intention to divest our endowment fund of all investments in fossil fuel extraction corporations.  

We encourage others to consider the same action. May the God of creation and history hear our prayers and help us to change.

 

-Approved by the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship Activist Council, Sept. 17, 2015