SYDNEY, Friday July 13, 2018: To celebrate the Irish Government’s vote overnight to divest from fossil fuels, 350.org Australia has presented a bouquet of flowers to the Irish Consul General in Sydney, Jane Connolly.
The Dail (Irish Parliament) overnight passed a Bill to drop all coal, oil and gas investments from Ireland’s €8bn sovereign fund, the Irish Strategic Investment Fund, within the next five years. It makes Ireland the first country to fully divest public money from fossil fuels. The Bill is expected to be ratified by the Irish Senate without amendment later this year.
More than US$7 trillion has been divested from fossil fuels globally in recent years and, as Shell admitted in its latest Annual Report, this is having a tangible impact on financing fossil fuel developments. The Irish announcement comes a few days after the Pope’s strong call to action on climate from a two-day conference held in the Vatican, and full divestment from one of Cambridge University’s colleges.
“Today we raise a pint of Guinness to Ireland for getting out of coal, oil and gas. Here’s to the Irish,” said 350.org deputy CEO Glen Klatovsky. “Ireland led on gay marriage, and we eventually followed suit. Our job is to ensure the same happens here on the issue of fossil fuel divestment.”
“We will send a six-pack of Guinness to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in the hope it might inspire him to follow Ireland’s lead. However, given the government’s track record we will need the luck of the Irish!” said Klatovsky.
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