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A hot topic at this year's General Assembly will no doubt be the fossil fuel divestment movement. The Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) takes a very serious view on divestment and believes there are multiple ways to make an impact. At the 2014 General Assembly (GA), a Proposed Business Resolution on fossil fuel divestment will be presented.
The UUA Board of Trustees passed a motion in April adressing the business resolution on divestment as follows:
"Recognizing the growing threat of climate change to the earth and to current and future generations, the Board of Trustees believes we must redouble our efforts to press for action to address the crisis through our invested assets. We should use all of the tools available to us, including shareholder advocacy and divestment of shares in companies doing the greatest harm. Therefore we support the passage of the Business Resolution calling for divestment of fossil fuel company stocks and engagement with the companies whose shares we hold. Further, we applaud the Investment Committee and Socially Responsible Investing Committee for their work in carrying out the 2006 Statement of Conscience Threat of Global Warming/Climate Change" which says: "We call upon our denominational leaders to provide sustainable investing, by exploring the potential for using the ownership rights of the denomination's financial resources to positively address the global warming/climate change crisis.
In addition, the Board charges the team of Julian Sharp, Larry Ladd and Donna Harrison with crafting the Board statement supporting the proposed business resolution. This statement should make clear that The Board supports the resolution as written. To the extent that changes are proposed during the mini-assembly process, the Board will support those changes only if they are agreed to by the same parties who crafted and agreed to the proposed resolution."
On Thursday, June 20th the Chair of the Socially Responsible Investing Committee (SRIC), Glenn Farley, presented their report (PDF) to the General Assembly. Please take a moment to read the report to see who the UUA is as a responsible investor, promises made and fulfilled by the committee and, the promises they commit to fulfill in the future.
The UUA's Committee on Socially Responsible Investing offers a must read for all Unitarian Universalists (UUs) called "Ten Things All UUs Should Know About Socially Responsible Investing (SRI)".
Recently Rev. Fred Small had an article on fossil fuel divestment titled "Fossil fuel divestment is moral, strategic" published in UU World. Also published in the same issue is a counterpoint article by UUA Treasurer, Tim Brennan, titled "Fossil fuel divestment is not the answer." Check out the articles for a well rounded view of this growing issue.
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Last updated on Friday, May 23, 2014.
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