Open Letter to Christian Investment Companies: Give Members the Option to Opt Out of Fossil Fuels

By Liz Schmitt 2-06-2015 | Series:
An option to divest. Image courtesy pichetw/shutterstock.com
An option to divest. Image courtesy pichetw/shutterstock.com

Author’s Note: By now, you may have heard that Jim Wallis and Sojourners have stopped funding climate change by divesting from fossil fuels. Unfortunately, for millions of Christians who invest at faith-based financial institutions, fossil-free investing just isn’t an option.

We’ve done our research. Of the 13 major Christian investment companies we studied, not a single one offers a way for their members to opt out of fossil fuels. We think Christian investment companies should be the FIRST to stop funding climate change! Read our open letter and sign below.

We are writing to you as Christians who are deeply concerned about the threat that climate change, driven by the fossil-fuel industry, poses to God’s good creation.

Psalm 24 tells us, “The earth is the Lord’s, and all that is in it.” From the very beginning of the Bible, we are called to be stewards of God’s earth. Yet our current sinful addiction to fossil fuels is polluting God’s creation, causing global warming, and stopping us from being proper stewards.

All of us, as Christians, want to help change this. One way we can make a difference is to pull our money out of the fossil-fuel industry, because “the wages of sin is death.” We want to divest from coal, oil, and natural gas and invest in cleaner energy that won’t contribute to climate change.

None of the major Christian financial companies offers us what we want — an investment option that is free of fossil fuels. While there are some secular companies with options, we see this as the opportunity to add a critical issue — caring for God’s creation — to the spectrum of “Biblically Responsible Investing.”

We wish to move our money completely away from fossil fuel’s failed future and invest it in resilient industries that bring us back from the brink of catastrophic climate change. No matter what reforms fossil-fuel companies might make due to pressure to do better, they will still continue to increase extraction of coal, oil, and natural gas, directly damaging our earth, which is our sacred trust. Making our investments both holy and green allows each of us to send a clear message to our political and corporate leaders about our priorities and our values.

As Christians looking to be good stewards of both our money and God’s world, we ask you to create a fossil-free investment option for us. World Divestment Day is on Feb. 13. On that day people around the world will take the pledge to personally divest from fossil fuels by 2020. Christian financial companies can play a major role in not funding climate change.

Our consciences call us to act, and the stakes are no less than the well-being of the world God entrusted to our care.

Sign the open letter by clicking here!

 

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