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Church of England to withdraw funds from polluting firms that fail to tackle climate change

8 JULY 2018 • 7:00PM

The Church of England is to withdraw funds from polluting firms that fail to tackle climate change.

Companies including Shell and BP could face disinvestment from the church within five years if they do not fall in line with strict environmental measures.

Its General Synod, meeting this weekend in York, voted to bring in the timetable to put more pressure on companies which fail to meet the aims of the Paris climate accords.

The church pulled £12m in funds out of assets such as coal and tar sands oil following another Synod vote in 2015, but is still an investor in major fossil fuels companies.

The church’s pension fund, worth £2bn, is understood to be in deficit, but a spokesman said it was on track to remove it.

The decision came after the church was slammed by one of its bishops for failing to move with sufficient urgency.

The Bishop of Oxford, Steven Croft, said the church was “not moving quickly enough” and urged it to disinvest by 2020, an shorter timetable.  

“If we continue to invest in these companies beyond 2020, we will be generating profit from practices which will harm and exacerbate climate change,” he said.

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