It's the first I've heard from this Dave Eddey guy, but he makes a good point. The UK is a huge hitter in the world of finance generally, and carbon-intensive industries too. If you have money in a mainstream UK bank, or a pension from pretty much any normal fund, your money is funding the exacerbation of the climate crisis.New listings of fossil fuel companies would be immediately banned on the London Stock Exchange as part of a proposal by the Liberal Democrats that the party says could help the UK become a leader in tackling the climate emergency.
Under the plan outlined to the Guardian by the Lib Dem leader, Ed Davey, another immediate policy would be to stop new bonds being issued in London to finance oil, coal or gas exploration.
Fossil fuel firms already listed in the UK would then have two years to produce a coherent plan about how they would reach net zero emissions by 2045, or risk being struck off the LSE.
In the longer term, pension funds would have to disinvest from fossil fuels by 2035, with all companies with fossil fuel assets removed from the exchange by 2045.
Davey, who on Friday marks the first anniversary of becoming the permanent leader of the Lib Dems, said such plans had the potential to achieve more than the UK’s own move to net zero emissions, or even its chairing of November’s Cop26 climate summit in Glasgow.
“The reality is that no matter how much governments spend, it’s going to be totally dwarfed by the amounts banks, private equity and hedge funds invest every day,” Davey said.
“So if you’re going to really take on climate change you’ve got to get that private capital to switch from dirty into clean. And this is a fundamental role for Britain in global leadership on climate change.”
This proposal would be good for UK savers and pensioners, as their investments would no longer be exposed to the imminent carbon bubble when the market final realises all its unburnable carbon assets are stranded. And it would also be good for the world, by reducing the amount of funding available to continue f.cking up the atmosphere.
(I'm not sure how to get it from the Lib Dems to somewhere it could actually happen, though.)
XR are also calling for a ban on all new fossil fuel investments. Despite their sometimes questionable publicity tactics, they do have very sensible demands about the climate emergency. It's absolutely nuts that corporations are still allowed to invest in fossil fuels at a time when most people in the world want decarbonisation and a sustainable future.