During a council meeting of the Vale of the White Horse District Council on 9 October 2019, a divestment motion was unanimously accepted, which was tabled by Green Party councillor Cheryl Briggs and Liberal Democrat councillor Bob Johnston, who is also a member of the Oxfordshire Pension Board.
The motion highlighted the incompatibility of declaring a Climate Emergency, whilst continuing to keep Pension Fund investments in non-renewable companies. The council accepted to call on the Oxfordshire Pension Fund to divest from non-renewable energy companies whose main purpose is the exploration and/or extraction of fossil fuels. The council will also ask the Oxfordshire Pension Fund to consider investment in a passive low-carbon fund, available via the Brunel Partnership and generating similar financial returns to the wider investment market.
We congratulate Cheryl Briggs, the only Green Party councillor in The Vale of the White Horse District Council and Bob Johnston having proposed and successfully passed this important motion. The Vale of the White Horse DC joins SODC and Oxford City with similar divestment pledges and it is hoped this will inspire other district councils in Oxfordshire.