Australian Provincial Fr Brian McCoy sj has committed the Australian Jesuits to joining with other organisations around the world in responding to the call to divest from fossil fuels.
"In the light of our commitment to reconciliation with creation, we believe that divestment is an ethical, impactful and valuable opportunity to consider not only for the Australian Province but for all Australian companies’, said the Provincial in a statement released for World Environment Day on 5 June.
"The Province has a number of investments in companies that contribute positively to society and the environment, including social bonds, wind turbine farms and solar energy.
"Moving forward, we will be working closely with our external asset managers to develop strategies to assist the Province in divesting in fossil fuel or tier 1 companies - as detailed in the Australian Institute March Report ‘Climate proofing your investment: Moving funds out of fossil fuels’ - with the view to adding this to our screening requirements."
Fr McCoy has also committed the Province to contributing to the Flights for Forests initiative.
Launched by the Jesuits in the Asia-Pacific region in 2011, the initiative provides a way to offset the environmental impact of travel by contributing $5 for every flight taken. Funds contributed to Flights for Forests are used to support forestry and other environmental regeneration projects across the region.
"It has been clear for some years that human beings will need to reconsider our relationship with the land if we are to preserve our world for future generations", said Fr McCoy.
"The more we learn about the interconnectedness of life, the more we see how our decisions and actions can have far-reaching impacts, particularly on vulnerable communities in the poorest parts of the globe."
"Pope Francis has emphasised how serious the crisis is and how urgent the call to world leaders and Christians to address it personally and together."
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