Church Divestment Day of Action: Sunday 5th March 2023

On Sunday 5th March 2023, people around England and Wales will be taking action at Cathedrals around England and Wales to demand that the Church of England and the Catholic Church disinvest from fossil fuels. There are a range of actions you can take, from holding a vigil outside a Cathedral to praying inside. We’ve put together a menu of options to help inspire you. It includes things you can do on your own and things you can do with others.

In the last five years, most major denominations in the UK have divested, or committed to divest, from fossil fuel companies because these companies are fuelling the climate emergency. However, the Church of England and the Catholic Church still hold investments in fossil fuels. The Cof E has promised to divest by mid-2023 from any fossil fuel companies which are not ‘Paris Compliant’.

These infographics from Operation Noah show which dioceses in both churches still hold investments in fossil fuels. NB: All Scottish dioceses in the Catholic Church have committed to divest and so are not listed here.

  • The dioceses marked red hold investments in fossil fuels.
  • The Cof E dioceses marked amber have sold their shares in fossil fuels for financial reasons, rather than environmental reasons. They have not committed to not reinvest in fossil fuels in the future.
  • Those marked in green have made a commitment to divest any shares in fossil fuels within two years of making a commitment and, in many cases, already have. They have also committed not to reinvest in fossil fuels in the future. We will, therefore, not be taking action in these dioceses.

Get Involved!

  • Check out this menu of options for inspiration for what action you might take.
  • Attend a Zoom call to get informed: Saturday 28th January, 11am-noon. We will be providing a briefing on why and how we’re asking people to take action and explaining how you can get involved. You don’t have to attend this to take part, but it will be really useful. Register in advance (this will take you to a link to register for CCA’s ‘Saturday Sessions’).
  • Check out this list to see if someone is coordinating an action near you. 
  • Get in touch if you would be willing to coordinate an action at a Cathedral near you. We can provide you with guidance and help to do this
  • If you would like to take action at a Catholic Cathedral please contact Catholics For Christian Climate Action on catholicscca@gmail.com for guidance on the best way to do this and to be put in touch with others in your area who are interested in taking action.
  • Download placards to print (A4 and A3). You should be able to print the A4 placard on a home printer that prints in colour. You may need to take the A3 placard to a local print shop or a colour photocopier.
  • Download an A5 leaflet you can print and handout to the congregation and/or passers-by at your action.
  • COMING SOON: Download some advice on making your own banner
  • Download prayers you can use during an action and fliers you can handout.
  • Download a template press release which you can adapt and send to your local media. CCA nationally will coordinate a press release to the national press. On Thursday 9th February, 7pm-8:30pm we will be holding a Zoom call during which we will be on hand to help you adapt the template. You will (we hope) leave the Zoom call with a press release ready to send. It will be a ‘fill the gaps’ exercise beginning with the template and adding in local information.
  • Order a CCA t-shirt here to wear on the day (optional): https://christianclimateaction.org/resources/cca-t-shirts 

Take Photographs

We want to send photos of the action to the national media, both Christian and secular. If you take part in an action please send photos on the day, either during your action or as soon as possible afterwards, to christianclimateaction@gmail.com 

The action will be ‘seen’ by far more people in the media than it will in real life, and media coverage will maximise its impact so please do prioritise having a dedicated photographer if you can and do send photos ASAP.

We’d like the photos to look as unified as possible – this will increase our chances of the media using our images. It woud really help if you could make placards and banners using the designs we’ve suggested and provided.

Withholding funds from the CofE

Currently a number of individuals in CCA who are members of the Church of England are considering withholding their giving until either their diocese or the whole of the Church of England, commits to divest from fossil fuels. If this is something you would bei interested in, please contact us on christianclimateaction@gmail.com for more information.

We’d also like to hear from people who would be interested in bringing a motion that proposes your church or Parish withholds financial giving to your diocese until they make a commitment to divest from fossil fuels. We may be able to support you to write a motion.