Fossil fuel divestment has gained traction recently among universities and wealth funds, particularly after the 2015 Paris Agreement. Some of the largest financial institutions and insurance companies around the world are even divesting.
On July 12, Ireland became the first country to commit to divesting public funds from fossil fuels!
The bill requires the Irish national investment fund to sell all investments in fossil fuels including coal, oil, gas and peat, which are estimated to be more than US$350m in over 150 companies, within five years. This drastically changes the position of Ireland, which recently ranked 2nd worst country in Europe in terms of climate change action. The bill is expected to become law before the end of the year. By divesting, the Irish parliament is sending a clear message to the fossil fuel companies and the international community: shift to cleaner energy and accelerate the transition by phasing-out of fossil fuels.