Church of England to withdraw funds from polluting firms that fail to tackle climate change

By Paul Homewood


The increasingly irrelevant Church of England has jumped on the virtue signalling bandwagon, and decided to withdraw funds from polluting firms that “fail to tackle climate change.”

From the Telegraph:



The Church of England is to withdraw funds from polluting firms that fail to tackle climate change.

Companies including Shell and BP could face disinvestment from the church within five years if they do not fall in line with strict environmental measures.

Its General Synod, meeting this weekend in York, voted to bring in the timetable to put more pressure on companies which fail to meet the aims of the Paris climate accords.

The church pulled £12m in funds out of assets such as coal and tar sands oil following another Synod vote in 2015, but is still an investor in major fossil fuels companies.

The church’s pension fund, worth £2bn, is understood to be in deficit, but a spokesman said it was on track to remove it.

The decision came after the church was slammed by one of its bishops for failing to move with sufficient urgency. 

The Bishop of Oxford, Steven Croft, said the church was “not moving quickly enough” and urged it to disinvest by 2020, an shorter timetable. 

“If we continue to invest in these companies beyond 2020, we will be generating profit from practices which will harm and exacerbate climate change,” he said.

But members instead opted to pass a motion which tells church commissioners to withdraw funds by 2023 from energy giants who do not fall in with the Paris agreement to ensure global temperatures do not rise by more than two degrees.

Until now the church has been focused on a policy of remaining a shareholder in big companies working in fossil fuels and mining and working to change them from within.

The Bishop of Manchester, David Walker, who led the debate, said the approach had successfully prompted companies to improve their policies.

A spokesman for the Church of England said: “Synod’s vote makes clear that the Church must play a leading role and exercise its moral leadership on the urgent issue of climate change.

“Today’s decision, including the amendment by Giles Goddard, will allow us to continue to push for real change in the oil and gas sector and use engagement, our voting rights and rights to file shareholder resolutions to drive the change we want to see.  

“As we said during the debate, our active engagement and voting record provide greater leverage and influence than we could ever hope to achieve by acting alone or by forced divestment and simply selling our holdings.”


It is hard to know where to start with this hypocritical navel gazing.


If Welby and co had not realised it, it is not oil companies who “pollute”, it is everybody who burns the stuff.

When the C of E heats its palaces and vicarages, where do they think the energy comes from? Or for the cars they drive, computers they run or food they eat?

When the C of E stops using fossil fuels, I might believe their sincerity. In the meantime, they are simply a bunch of hypocrites.


As for oil companies meeting the aims of the Paris climate accords, what on earth does that mean? Produce oil with less CO2 in it? The only way they can reduce oil consumption, and therefore emissions, is to cut production.

And does this self righteous bunch of bishops realise the damage that would do the world’s economy?


In any event, more than half the world’s oil production is controlled by the Middle East, Russia and China, where C of E divestment will have no effect at all.


BP Energy Review 2018




But most worrying of all is the statement from John Sentamu that “the comforts provided by the modern economy ‘come at a great cost to the natural environment and spiritual health’. 

Is he suggesting that we all go back to how we used to live before the modern economy?

I find this sort of moralising nauseating and offensive. To disrespect the wellbeing of ordinary people in this way is not how a man of the cloth should behave.


July 13, 2018 at 05:21AM

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