London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine divests from coal companies

Medact’s Director, David McCoy, applauds LSHTM’s decision to divest from coal companies.


By Emma Howard in The Guardian. 13.5.15

“The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, has sold off investments in coal companies from its £16m endowment in a bid to rid itself of ties to firms that contribute most significantly to climate change. Campaigners say it is the first health research organisation in the world to do so.”

“LSHTM is only the second health organisation in the UK and third in the world to have made a divestment decision regarding fossil fuels, according to global health campaigners at MedAct.”

“In February a coalition of medical organisations published a report urging the health sector to divest from fossil fuels. It cited climate change as “the biggest global health threat of the 21st century” and asked health organisations including the Wellcome Trust to repeat the leadership they had shown on tobacco divestment. In June 2014, the British Medical Association – the representative body of doctors in the UK – voted in favour of divestment.”

“David McCoy, director of MedAct, one of the organisations that made up the coalition said: “This decision will hopefully encourage the Wellcome Trust and the Gates Foundation to follow suit. Both Wellcome and Gates have been finding excuses to avoid taking the kind of radical action needed to avert the crisis of climate change, whilst the moral, financial and scientific case for divestment by health institutions is becoming harder and harder to dismiss.”

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