Fossil Fuel Divestment
On Sunday, June 28th, the House of Bishops approved resolution C045 on environmental responsible investing. The resolution calls on various institutions within the church to divest from fossil fuel and reinvest in renewable energy as fiscally responsible. It also invites all dioceses and parishes to engage in conversation about fossil fuel divestment within the coming year. Greenhouse gases trap heat and cause global warming, which results in significant changes in climate around the world. These changes affect all living things, but the people affected most severely by extreme weather, drought, rising sea levels, and melting permafrost up to now have been some of the poorest people in our world who have contributed least to the increase in greenhouse gases. As global temperatures continue to rise, climate change impacts our health, economic well-being, food security, and access to clean water. Everything else we pray and hope for the Episcopal Church and all God’s people in the remainder of this century depends on a sustainable environment. The call to faith communities and other institutions to divest from the fossil fuel industry and reinvest in clean energy is a call for moral leadership. Our church is positioned to join in with the leadership of numerous other faith communities which have already begun fossil fuel divestment.
We call on the Episcopal Church to take seriously the duty to care for God’s creation and future generations, particularly those already suffering from the effects of climate change. Our divesting from fossil fuels will not bring the fossil fuel industry to a halt, but it will take away the stamp of moral approval from the continued use of fossil fuels. It is a powerful way for us to say that continued reliance on fossil fuels is morally unacceptable. It is a prophetic action as we stand united with our sisters and brothers around the world in financially supporting renewable energies. By divesting from fossil fuel and reinvesting in clean, renewable energy, we express our love and care for God and God’s creation for us and for all future generations.
- The Rev. Stephanie M. Johnson & Archdeacon Betsy Bennett