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Letter: Guildford Labour Supports Call for Environment Friendly Investment by SCC

Published on: 20 Mar, 2020
Updated on: 20 Mar, 2020

From Andy Giess

Guildford Labour Party Climate Officer

Guildford Labour supports fully the call for Surrey County Council to totally divest from sectors that damage our environment.

Surrey Pension Fund, managed by the county council (SCC), invests 4.29% of its funds into companies such as Shell, BP, BHP Billiton and Conoco Phillips. This amounts to £161,368,579 of the fund worth over £3 billion. The Labour Party has called for a reconsideration of how this could be changed and invested in other sectors in the portfolio.

The climate crisis has been driven by the fossil fuel industry and must change. Labour calls for a halt to investments which are damaging our climate and the planet which we all live on.

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Responses to Letter: Guildford Labour Supports Call for Environment Friendly Investment by SCC

  1. Martin Elliott Reply

    March 20, 2020 at 6:50 pm

    How strange that Surrey County Council seems to manage the pension fund.

    Company occupational pensions are NOT managed by the company or the directors. They are managed by a board of trustees. Whilst some of those are company nominated, at least some are employees.

    Obviously the actual running of the pension fund is done by specialist bankers and, as they say, investments can go up and down. However, advice and policy should be for trustees to invest in low risk and long term growth, not short term juggling.

    The reason for this is to protect the pension fund from being used to run the company leaving not enough to cover any long term payment of pensions for all members.

    Where there have been recent problems has been because companies have failed to fulfil the commitment to contribute to the pension fund, either themselves or deductions made from employees pay or for poor investment failing to grow the fund in line with liability to pay all pensions.

    So do not these protections for company pensions extend to Local Authority Pensions to have an independent investment policy?

  2. Jim Allen Reply

    March 20, 2020 at 9:26 pm

    The climate is currently cleaning itself as fewer aircraft flying, fewer cars on the road and fewer cruise liners.

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