5 Big Ways to Take Climate Action Divesting from Fossil Fuels with Li Mei

Yarra City Council
5 Big Ways to Take Climate Action. Divesting from Fossil Fuels with Li Mei.

As part of Yarra’s 5 Big Ways to Take Climate Action, Council is talking to community members on the bold, creative and impactful ways that they take climate action.

We know many people who live, work and play in Yarra are passionate about climate justice, and about building a safe and just future where people and nature thrive.

There are lots of people in our community with bright and brilliant ideas to tackle the climate emergency. We’re shining a light on these community members as part of our 5 Big Ways to Take Climate Action.

Li Mei’s story

We spoke to Yarra local Li Mei about how she uses divestment to make sure her money goes towards companies that align with her values.

How do you take climate action?

Li Mei takes climate action in various ways, including looking very carefully at things she spends money on – starting with big investments and working her way down.

“I investigated that my superannuation is with a fund that does not support fossil fuels and they have committed to not supporting fossil fuels”. This is an action that everyone who has ever worked can take, even if it’s been a short term or casual job.

She did the same when deciding who to bank with, as fossil fuel companies often rely on banks for lending for their coal, oil and gas projects. Again, Li Mei did her research and ensured that her chosen bank did not allow investment with fossil fuel companies.

She also considered whether her health insurance company invested in fossil fuels, which utilities companies use the most renewable energy, and even how ethical the places she shops for her weekly groceries are.

Further, she contacts the big companies where she has her money and questions their sustainability policies and targets in order to keep them accountable and ensure they’re not greenwashing.

Why did you decide to take climate action in this way?

Li Mei decided to take climate action through her money as she believes this is one of the places where her power lies.

“I decided to take climate action in this way because what you spend is really important, what everyone spends is really important”.

Do you have any advice for others looking to take climate action through divestment?

Li Mei’s advice is to talk to others who have divested their money and to have conversations about climate action with your friends and family. She also recommends contacting not-for-profit organisations like Market Forces who have done a lot of the research into the climate credentials of banks, superannuation funds and insurance companies and can support you with your divestment journey.

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