By David Robertson and Alasdair Tollemache
Alasdair Tollemache is a Green Party Councillor in Stirling and will be working with David Robertson (Candidate in the Bonnybridge and Larbert by-election) and Greens across Central Scotland to lobby for a change in the way council pension schemes invest our money. For more information on Green action in Falkirk contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Central Region Council Pension investments (Falkirk, Stirling, Clackmannan) are not only made on behalf of all council employees they cover the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), Scottish Fire and Rescue the Central Carers Association and others.
Common Weal, UNISON Scotland and Friends of the Earth Scotland are currently leading campaigns to ensure that pension funds generate wealth in an ethical manner and do not contribute to unwanted industries that destroy health or our environment. Falkirk Greens are currently working with other Central Scotland Green Party Branches to see how we can help put pressure on the Scottish Local Government Pension Scheme to stop this misguided use of public funds.
The Falkirk Pension Fund has invested £5m in BAE Systems and £4.5m in Qinetiq, a defence specialist with a facility at Kyle of Lochalsh. The fund also has investments in BP £15,959,788 Energy, ROYAL DUTCH SHELL £15,676,606 Energy and JAPAN TOBACCO £14,975,474 Cigarettes. The Falkirk Pension Fund has invested £5m in BAE Systems and £4.5m in Qinetiq, a defence specialist with a facility at Kyle of Lochalsh.
Does Falkirk really need to invest in tobacco – which kills half of all its long-term users, arms manufacturers who profit from death and destruction abroad or oil and coal which is causing environmental damage and contributing to climate change?
Greens would argue that equally good returns on our investments are possible by investing in social housing, renewable energy and electric bus and car manufacture, all of which would also be an investment in our local economy.