September 19, 2018

MIA and Ethical investment

The Global Climate Action Summit took place last week, Sept. 12-14, in San Francisco. The Summit brought leaders and people together from around the world to “Take Ambition to the Next Level.” It also celebrated the extraordinary achievements of states, regions, cities, companies, investors and citizens with respect to climate action. It called especially for deeper worldwide commitments and accelerated action from countries and all sectors of society to put the globe on track to prevent dangerous climate change and realize the historic Paris Agreement. The major emphasis was on the decarbonization of the global economy. As part of this strategy there was a particular call to all who invest their finances to divest from the fossil fuel industry.

MIA has always paid particular attention to ethical investing. As the Endowment Fund grew, it became even more important to ensure that the funds we invest are used in a way consistent with our values. The Board at its meeting in May 2017, approved an Ethical Investment Policy, which outlines for our Financial Managers the positive and negative screen we wish to have applied to all the companies in which we invest funds.

In relation to care of the environment MIA directs that its funds should not be invested in the following companies:

·     Those operating in a high impact industry if that company has a poor public environmental policy (as rated by Eiris)

·     Those that have shown no evidence of working to address climate change

·     Those where a major part of their business activity or focus (defined as more than 10% of group revenues) is derived from hydraulic fracturing (fracking) , and/or the unconventional use of oil and natural gas production

·     Those that have two (or more) known pollution convictions within the last 3 years

·     Those that operate nuclear power plants

Because of our policy in this regard, the Global Catholic Climate Movement counts MIA among the 122 Catholic entities that have divested since their campaign began in 2016.

MIA’s Ethical Investment Policy covers a wide range of other areas which our Investment Managers must take into account. These include Human Rights, Animal Rights, Genetic engineering of Plants and Animals, Manufacture of Armaments and Supplies to the Military, Manufacture of Anti-Life Products, Production of products and services that are negative to Health and Wellbeing including Tobacco, Alcohol, Breast Milk substitutes, Gambling, Pornography and Bribery.

The full MIA Ethical Investment Policy can be accessed here
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