New York City & State propose to #DivestNY’s massive pensions from fossil fuels

The consequences of fossil fuels.

Recently, after over five years of community campaigning for New York to divest from fossil fuels, City Comptroller Scott Stringer and Governor Andrew Cuomo each released separate proposals to freeze all current fossil fuel investments, divest New York’s public pension funds fossil fuel companies, and reinvest in renewable energy. Together, New York’s pension funds are among the largest in the world, representing a combined $390 billion.

This comes after a year of traumatic climate impacts — from hurricanes devastating Puerto Rico, Houston, and beyond, to wildfires engulfing California. Now, with dangerous assaults from the Trump administration, New York’s elected officials are stepping up.

Bill McKibben, 350.org co-founder, issued the following statement:

“The dam has broken: after years of great activism, New York has taken a massive step towards divesting from fossil fuels. Coming from the capital of world finance, this will resonate loud and clear all over the planet. It’s a crucial sign of how fast the financial pendulum is swinging away from fossil fuels.”

The broad and diverse coalition to #DivestNY has been building power across New York City and State to call on our elected officials to cut ties with fossil fuels. Now, this announcement comes on the heels of New York City Public Advocate Tish James’ leadership urging divestment, the 5000-strong Sandy5 march, and over five years of campaigning by environmental, social, and climate justice groups for New York’s elected officials to stand on the right side of history.

Just last week, AXA Insurance, the World Bank, Johns Hopkins University, Barnard College, and more made major announcements cutting ties with the fossil fuel economy.

To date, over 800 institutions representing more than $5.2 trillion in assets have committed to divest. Additional New York institutions that have cut ties with fossil fuel companies include Cooperstown, Barnard College, Columbia University, Syracuse University, the American Museum of Natural History.