The fossil fuel divestment movement is sweeping the nation. This grass roots campaign is now branching into the collective power of individual statements of personal divestment. This is your chance to speak with conviction about the world you would like to invest in by divesting your funds from fossil fuels.
We recognize that personal divestment is both a responsibility and a privilege. Many of us don’t have retirement accounts or other investment market funds to divest. But for those of us that do, removing our financial stake in the companies driving the climate crisis is our responsibility.
Since launching broad divestment campaigns in both New Zealand and Australia during Bill McKibben’s June tour, the campaigns have now focused in and targets are lined up. Today marked a new phase of campaigning in both countries, and builds on the rapid successes of various religious institutions paving the divestment way. Here are 12 photos from things that happened today across both countries (more are rolling in!). All these efforts coincide with the international Reclaim Power Month of Action.
In New Zealand, 350 Aotearoa and Coal Action Network Aotearoa launched a campaign calling on Westpac bank to stop financing Bathurst Resources Ltd, the company which has plans to dig up coal on the Denniston Plateau – an important conservation area home to rare species of geckos, prostrate plants, giant snails and kiwi. Westpac makes big promises around its sustainability practices and its time it lived up to them by not funding climate change. You can send them a letter asking them to withdraw their financial support to Bathurst Resources here. The 350 Aotearoa team also kicked off the first of their Divestment Forums tonight – to a great crowd in Auckland.
Meanwhile, across the ocean and not too far away, students from across 18 of Australia’s universities joined together for a Fossil Free Universities day of action. In-roads are already being made at campuses like the Australian National University and Monash University. Over the coming months and into next year we’ll be expecting to hear much more as all these Fossil Free Campus groups ramp up their campaigns that are pushing their universities to divest. Meanwhile, later this week we’ll see 500 people turn out to Divestment Forums in Brisbane and Melbourne, as part of a series of forums around the country. Check out some of the fantastic photos that came from the day of action (a slideshow of them is viewable by clicking here):
Today is the 4th day of Reclaim Power — a month of action on energy. Over the weekend, our friends at International Rivers led one of the first mobilizations, called Power 4 People. It was a day targeting the World Bank, calling on them to end financing for dirty energy projects and to invest in clean, local energy for all. Lots of the action was targeting the @WorldBank on twitter. And in Washington D.C. this crew took the message to World Bank headquaters: