This Tuesday, July 1st, the County Council will be discussing a motion submitted by Green Party Councillor David Williams. This is very exciting since – as far as we know – it is the first time a local authority in the UK is discussing a motion to divest from fossil fuels.
And we want to make sure it gets as much support as it can!
Can you contact your councillor to let her or him know that you would like them to support the motion?
What to write?
One option is a very simple note, just asking them to support it. Something such as:
A motion to divest Oxfordshire County Council of fossil fuels has been proposed (number 18 on the agenda), and I would urge you to support it. It sends a clear message that Oxfordshire is ready to think about its citizens future and that we must support the move towards the clean energy revolution we so urgently need.
You can also go into the details of why it is important to divest. This is one way of putting it:
There are two compelling reasons for divestment.
The first is about the risk of stranded assets:
Proven fossil fuel reserves contain already five times the amount of carbon that can be released into the atmosphere without triggering potentially catastrophic (> 2 degrees C) global warming.
While those fossil fuel reserves are still below ground physically, they are already above ground economically, in the form of the market valuation of the major fossil fuel companies that control them. However, if those reserves cannot safely be used there is an inevitable ‘carbon bubble’ waiting to burst. (If they are used, an even more dangerous future awaits us, in which stock exchanges are unlikely to continue to function.) Either way, they are toxic assets, which the County Council should rapidly dispose of, before global investors belatedly recognise their inflated valuation.
The second is about moral responsibility:
The continued and unabated burning of fossil fuels risks the entire future of civilisation. If it is wrong to continue in this way, it is wrong too to seek to profit from doing so.
What else can I do?
1) Sign the petition if you haven’t done so yet, and get all your friends and neighbours to do the same!
2) Join us for half an hour outside the County Council at 9.30am on Tuesday 1st July. As the Councillors arrive, they will see us with banners and placards, reminding them to vote the right way! County hall is at OX1 1ND on New Road.