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Irish parliament passes bill to force sovereign fund to divest from fossil fuels
12 Jul 2018
Ireland committed to divesting public funds from fossil fuel companies on Thursday after parliament passed a bill forcing the 8.9 billion euro ($10.4 billion) Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF) to withdraw money invested in oil, gas and coal.
Members of Ireland's Dail (Parliament) passed the Fossil Fuel Divestment Bill, which requires the fund to divest direct investments in fossil fuel undertakings within five years and not to make future investments in the industry.
In an amendment, the bill describes 'fossil fuel undertakings' as those 'whose business is engaged, for the time being, in the exploration for or extraction or refinement of a fossil fuel where such activity accounts for 20 percent or more of the turnover of that undertaking.'
The bill also said indirect investments should not be made, unless there is unlikely to be more than 15 percent of an asset invested in a fossil fuel undertaking.
The ISIF is managed by Ireland's National Treasury Management Agency. As of June last year, the fund's investments in the global fossil fuel industry were estimated at 318 million euros across 150 companies.