Monday, September 7, 2015

CA Stops Investing in Rotting Corpse of Big Coal

Divestment is no joke. Divestment brought down South African apartheid.

Not that it's really necessary, given that Big Coal has been walking around dead for a couple of decades now

The California Assembly passed a bill Wednesday that prompts the state’s public employee pension funds to divest from coal.

The bill passed the Assemby with a vote of 43 to 27, and will require the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) and California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) — which combined are responsible for $476 billion in assets — to remove all holdings in companies that get at least half of their revenue from coal mining. The divestment would have to be completed by July 2017. If signed into law, the measure would be the first of its kind in the United States.

“Coal is the fuel of the past and it’s no longer a wise investment for our pensioners,” California assemblyman Rob Bonta, who presented the bill, said in a statement. “I’m pleased that my colleagues agree: it’s time to move on from this dirty energy source.”
California’s Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León, who introduced the bill, also praised its passage.

“Coal is losing value quickly and investing in coal is a losing proposition for our retirees; it’s a nuisance to public health; and it’s inconsistent with our values as a state on the forefront of efforts to address global climate change,” de León said. “California’s utilities are phasing out coal, and it’s time our pension funds did the same.”

The bill now heads to Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk. The governor has been vocal about the need to act on climate change — he said in June that, when talking about climate action, “we are talking about extinction. We are talking about climate regimes that have not been seen for tens of millions of years. We’re not there yet, but we’re on our way.” The governor is expected to sign the divestment bill.

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