Vatican calls for Catholics to divest from investment in fossil fuels & military weapons

Leading by example, the Vatican bank said that it does not invest in fossil fuels.

Sumita Thiagarajan| June 22, 2020, 06:31 PM

The Vatican advised Catholics on June 18 to move away from environment-damaging investments such as fossil fuel industries, reported Reuters.

In a document, "Journeying for the care of the common home", the Vatican strongly urged Catholics to move away from investing in companies that do not respect human rights, rely on child labour, and produce armaments.

Calls to protect nature

The document contained warnings against the dangers of climate change and supported agreements to curb global warming.

In a section of the document that touched on finance, Reuters reported that people “could favor positive changes ... by excluding from their investments companies that do not satisfy certain parameters.”

The parameters listed included bans on child labour and the protection of the environment.

The document also explicitly urged to shun companies that are detrimental to human ecology and to the environment, such as fossil fuels, as reported by Reuters.

In another section of the document, it called for the “stringent monitoring” of mining industries to prevent the contamination of air, soil and water in areas with fragile ecosystems.

According to Vatican News, the document also highlighted the need for taxation of carbon dioxide emission and the reform of subsidies for the fossil fuel industry.

Vatican bank said it does not invest in fossil fuels

Reuters reported that more that 40 faith organizations from around the world pledged last month not to invest in fossil fuel companies.

Similarly, the Vatican bank said it does not invest in fossil fuels and many Catholic institutions around the world have moved towards the same direction.

The document also urged Catholics to take strong stands against companies that damage the environment, through over-exploiting forests, or defending the right of indigenous populations against using their land for extraction of natural resources, according to Reuters.

Top image via Yeo Khee/Unsplash