Ireland votes to divest from fossil fuels

Ireland is set to become the first country in the world to fully divest public money from fossil fuels.

Dail Eireann, the Irish parliament, voted in favour of passing the historic legislation in a 90 to 53 vote. The only party to oppose the move was the minority government party, Fine Gael.
Dail Eireann Irish Parliament
It enables Ireland to divest its sovereign wealth fund, Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF), worth €8.5bn, from coal, gas and oil and would see a ban on any further fossil fuels investment going forward.

The bill is likely to pass into law in the next few months after it is reviewed by the financial committee. Once enacted, it would force the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund to sell its investment in fossil fuel industries over the next five years.

Green Party Leader Eamon Ryan TD said: “We have to leave four fifths of known fossil fuel reserves in the ground. That is what we are acknowledging and legislating for here today.”

“There is a huge opportunity as a result of this bill to switch the money invested by the ISIF away from fossil fuel industries, and into clean energy investments. The Government needs to recognise the economic opportunities of going Green, and massively ramp up their ambition.”

In 2015, Norway’s sovereign pension fund divested from some fossil fuel companies, but not all.

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