ACT, Newcastle council divest from fossil fuel

Newcastle council has taken a bold step, but it is facing a challenge.

Newcastle City Council voted on August 26 to join the global push to divest from fossil fuel.

This follows the ACT’s announcement that it would become the first Australian government to divest from fossil fuels and aim to have 100% renewable energy by 2025.

With a total investment portfolio of $280 million, Newcastle council has also told Australia’s big four banks they need to divest portfolios of assets that include coal and oil.

Newcastle, home of the world’s biggest coal port and with a rich heritage of coal mining is the seventh, and largest, council in the country to divest.

Labor councillor Declan Clausen, who was elected on a platform of moving away from fossil fuel investments, drove the motion. “With a lack of leadership from state and federal government, it falls to local government to act,” he said.