Help persuade Enfield Council to divest from fossil fuels
By James Cracknell
Two years ago this month I cycled from London to Paris with a group of climate activists.
We were travelling to the United Nations’ COP21 climate talks, raising awareness of the importance of the talks along the way. On the Champs-Élysées we joined with tens of thousands of others – including many who had cycled from around Europe as we did – to demand the strongest possible global deal for reducing carbon emissions.
The outcome of this event, of course, was the Paris Agreement. It is the first single deal for all the world’s nations to reduce their carbon emissions, with an aim to limit global warming to below two degrees Celsius. For many people, including me, the deal is not strong nor ambitious enough. However, it is a starting point, and it is important that all political leaders – not just of nations but of regions, cities, and indeed local boroughs – do everything they can to meet the terms of the deal.
The Paris Agreement was formally ratified in November 2016 and recognises: “The need for an effective and progressive response to the urgent threat of climate change on the basis of the best available scientific knowledge."
A year later, however, it became clear that Enfield Council was not responding in the ‘effective and progressive’ manner the deal demands. Last month Fossil Free UK revealed that councils across the UK were investing more than £16billion in the fossil fuel industry. It showed that Enfield Council, through its pension fund, was investing more than £60million in such companies, representing 5.6% of its £1billion total investments.