SACRAMENTO, CA — Today, California Environmental Voters (EnviroVoters) and Fossil Free California released the following statement in response to CalPERS’ “Sustainable Investments 2030 Strategy” to increase its investment in clean energy and sustainable funds.
CalPERS recognizing that some fossil fuel holdings must be responsibly phased out is a noteworthy step toward CalPERS meeting its fiduciary duty. The agency is proposing a limited form of divestment on an unspecified timeline with no enforceability. CalPERS members, state workers, retirees, union members and people from every part of California demand comprehensive divestment from the top fossil fuel companies by 2031, as called for in Senate Bill 252.
“It’s encouraging that CalPERS is prioritizing sustainable investments. However, anything short of divestment is not enough, especially when the impact of continuing to invest in fossil fuel companies disproportionately affects our most vulnerable communities,” said Fatima Iqbal-Zubair, Legislative Affairs Manager, California Environmental Voters. “California has set ambitious goals towards a cleaner, more sustainable future by passing SB 253 and SB 261. Now, the last piece of the puzzle to complete the corporate accountability package is divesting from state pension funds by passing SB 252.”
“While we welcome and appreciate CalPERS’ newly announced steps toward climate investments, sustainable investing cannot include fossil fuel companies. The fossil fuel companies CalPERS is engaging with, even those with so-called ‘net-zero’ plans, are moving in the wrong direction, doubling down on fossil fuels and scaling back much-needed renewables, said Miriam Eide, Executive Director, Fossil Free California. “As called for in Senate Bill 252, Californian’s pension holders demand full divestment of CalPERS in the 200 most carbon-intensive fossil fuel companies. As Californians face wildfire destruction, record flooding, and climate chaos, our state pension must stop gambling workers’ hard-earned savings on toxic and risky fossil fuel investments. We will continue to fight for a fossil free California that protects pension funds, workers, and our communities.”
As Californians face wildfire destruction, record flooding, and climate chaos, our state pension must stop gambling workers’ hard-earned savings on fossil fuel investments. In 2023, high-risk fossil fuel investments have no place in the retirement funds of hard-working Californians. We all deserve to live and retire in safety in the climate-stabilized future we’re building together.
Erika Guzman Cornejo
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California Environmental Voters (formerly the California League of Conservation Voters) believes the climate crisis is here and this moment requires transformative change. California has the policy solutions to stop climate change but lacks the political will to do it at the rate and scale that’s necessary. EnviroVoters exists to build the political power to solve the climate crisis, advance justice, and create a roadmap for global action. We organize voters, elect and train candidates, and hold lawmakers accountable for bold policy change. We won’t stop until we have resilient, healthy, thriving communities, and a democracy and economy that is just and sustainable for all. Join us at www.envirovoters.org and on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. See more press releases.