In June we found out that divestment from Fossil Fuels was at last going to be debated by Birmingham City Council! With only three weeks to prepare the Divest WMPF team sprang into action.
We set up a website information hub for public and Councillors alike. Brummies were called upon to lobby their Councillors.
The pieces of the puzzle started to come together as May’s lobbying of Mayoral candidates paid off, giving the motion cross party appeal, and postcards collected from constituents on Global Divestment Day were mailed to around 50 Councillors asking them to support the motion.
On Tuesday 11th July we witnessed the debate at Birmingham Council house. The passion being expressed was amazing:
Councillor Harmer ( Lib Dem)
“If we are to save our environment for future generations it is vital that we leave most of our coal and oil resources in the ground. It therefore makes no sense for
Divest WMPFBirmingham’s pension funds to be investing in industries based on exploiting these resources. Instead we should be investing more in low carbon technologies, which enable us to live cleaner, healthier lives.”
Councillor Straker Welds (Labour)
‘To continue investing in a commodity with a restricted capacity and decreasing value, that poses a threat to the values of our council, the safety of the planet and the targets set by Paris and Copenhagen, Is an inconsistency that doesn’t stack up.’
Councillor Alden,( Conservative)
‘We should be trying to position our city and region as the global leader on green infrastructure technology and green manufacturing.’
‘It was amazing ,when the vote came, to see all the hands raised and realise the Divestment Motion had unanimous, cross party support! ‘
Following this success we are taking the campaign to Coventry. If you would like to be involved please contact the Divest Team via face book or email DivestWMPF@gmail.com
By Kay Edwards