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Organisations challenge the NZ Super Fund

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Today eleven organisations in New Zealand called for the New Zealand Super Fund to fully divest from fossil fuels. The organisations signed an open letter after the NZSF announced its climate change-focused investment policies last week. It urges the New Zealand Super Fund to make their climate change response unequivocal and withdraw all their investments from the coal, oil and gas projects that are driving climate change.

"While the NZSF have made a step in the right direction, with the knowledge we have today, it is no longer possible to claim to be a responsible investor without also fully divesting from fossil fuels," said Niamh O’Flynn, Executive Director of 350 Aotearoa.

The organisations involved represent a range of organisations championing different issues that are affected by climate change, including unions, faith groups, environmental, social justice, and development organisations.

Last week the NZ Super Fund stated that they would not exclude the fossil fuel industry from their portfolio because "blanket exclusions rule out the possibility of engaging with firms in the sector that may be able to transition, and may have a role to play in transitioning to a low-carbon economy."

The letter focuses on the inadequacy of shareholder engagement as a tactic, stating "engagement does not work with a company whose primary source of profit is fossil fuels since they rely on that industry to continue existing."

"It’s a moral issue. Climate change is the greatest challenge of our times. New Zealanders wouldn’t be satisfied for our Super Fund to be invested in, and engaging with, some nuclear weapon manufacturers. So why would we settle for only a partial divestment from fossil fuels?"

The letter can be viewed at http://350.org.nz/organisations-challenge-nz-super-fund-open-letter/ The signing organisations are: 350 Aotearoa

Oxfam New Zealand

The New Zealand Public Service Association

Greenpeace New Zealand

World Wildlife Fund NZ

1222 members of Action Station

Health Sector Workers Network

Unite Union

Coal Action Network Aotearoa

Auckland Diocesan Climate Change Action Group

Anglican Diocese of Wellington

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