Wednesday 28 February 2024
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Campaign group’s Christmas video calls on council to divest from fossil fuels

A campaign group has created a Christmas video to highlight concerns around Nottinghamshire County Council’s pension fund investing in fossil fuel companies.

Divest Notts released a spoof video titled ‘The 12th day of divestment’ as part of its campaign aimed at Nottinghamshire County Council.

The pension fund looks after the retirement pots for Nottinghamshire council workers, teachers and other public sector employees.

The County Council said it is “working around the clock” to invest more sustainably.

Carl Braithwaite, 53, wrote the words and a group of singers from Extinction Rebellion sang for the video.

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The group is also pushing the council to commit to ‘keep 1.5 alive’ – after scientists said keeping global warming below 1.5C would avoid the worst climate impacts.

Mr Braithwaite, of Newark, said: “Each time we have an environmental shock there are implications for confidence in the fossil fuel market.

“What we really want them to do is align with 1.5C and move to divest from fossil fuels with an orderly transition.

“The idea around the song came after COP. Hopefully, it will gain interest as an issue for local people and to give the council a pause for reflection.

“A decision to align to 1.5C would be a fantastic New Year’s resolution.”

He said the video has also been noticed by former Green Party leader Natalie Bennett, who shared it on Twitter.

Chairman of the Nottinghamshire Pension Fund Committee, Cllr Eric Kerry, said: “Our pension fund is working around the clock to make more sustainable investments – we’re actually ahead of the game compared to a lot of other similar organisations.

“Nevertheless, our overriding purpose is to deliver the best possible pensions for our 145,000 members and that’s why this transition will take time.

“Anyone suggesting we should play fast and loose with our fund choices risks making future Christmases miserable for pensioners relying on our fund.”

Previously, XR Nottingham and Divest Notts have interrupted the Pension Fund Committee meeting at County Hall to read out a speech about divesting from fossil fuels.

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