The CCLC voted unanimously to support HB21-1246 PERA Public Employees’ Retirement Association Divestment From Fossil Fuel Companies. It will be heard first by the House Finance Committee on Monday, 4/19. Please take one or more of the following actions to support passage of this bill as soon as possible.
- Please write to members of the House Finance Committee to express your support for this legislation. Email addresses and suggested talking points are provided below. We have also created a brief PERA Written Testimony Toolkit or your reference to make it as easy as possible to submit feedback. You can submit feedback via email or via the General Assembly portal (link in toolkit). It would be helpful to have testimony particularly from PERA members, as well as from reps of organizations.
- Write an op-ed or letter to the editor on this issue. Steps and sample language and letters found here – or draw from the talking points provided below.
- Send a note of thanks to the bill sponsors: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Shannon.email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, Stephanie.Luck.firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
Suggested General Talking Points: *Please also refer to the PERA Written Testimony Toolkit
- The fossil fuel sector continues to struggle, with profits dropping, cash flow down, long-term debt loads rising and growth opportunities limited. Investment risks continue to mount, and the number of lawsuits seeking billions of dollars in damages from the biggest contributors to climate change is growing. All of this significantly impacts the value of oil and gas companies and investment returns for the fund.
- A recent report by BlackRock, the world’s largest investment house, shows that those who have divested from fossil fuels have profited financially. After examining “divestment actions by hundreds of funds worldwide,” the BlackRock analysts concluded that the portfolios “experienced no negative financial impacts from divesting from fossil fuels. In fact, they found evidence of modest improvement in fund return.
- Bankruptcy filings in the US Oil and Gas sector hit $297 billion in cumulative debt in 2020, and Colorado ranks the fifth highest state in the US for the number of oil and gas bankruptcies since 2015. Fossil fuels are a dying industry, and they are killing our planet.
- The fossil fuel industry is in a continued downward trend, facing increased climate-related financial risk, and mounting concerns over the growing climate crisis.
- PERA continues to invest Coloradans’ public money in problematic fossil fuel companies such as Suncor and Extraction Oil and Gas, both under scrutiny for harming local communities through dangerous pollution violations, particularly near lower-income communities and communities of color.
- Our public money should not be invested in companies that are adversely impacting our public health and safety.