Church council to pull fossil fuel funds

On its knees: World Council of Churches to hit fossil fuel industry

Oil companies will be praying that they will not be too hard hit by a decision from the World Council of Churches (WCC) to pull investments in the fossil fuel industry.

The group, which represents more than half a billion people and boasts 345 member churches, made the decision on Thursday on the final day of a committee meeting in Geneva.

It is not yet clear, however, if the measure applies just to the council itself or to all its member churches, which would have much larger investments in the industry than the council alone.

In its report issued on Thursday, the council said: “The committee discussed the ethical investment criteria, and considered that the list of sectors in which the WCC does not invest should be extended to include fossil fuels."

In April Nobel peace prize winner Archbishop Desmond Tutu called for an “anti-apartheid-style” boycott campaign against fossil fuel companies and lashed out at the Keystone XL pipeline plan in the US in particular over the climate change crisis.

In June the South African holyman took a swipe at Canadian oil sands, labelling the oil sands industry as “filth”.

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