3 November , 2017
The Public Health Association of Australia (PHAA) has made a strong statement in favour of fossil fuel divestment, calling on health insurer Medibank to divest its shares in coal, oil and gas companies.
The peak Australian public health body, which represents thousands of health professionals, has added their voice to that of thousands of Medibank’s customers, shareholders and the general public who see good health and continued fossil fuel use as incompatible.
In its letter, the PHAA outlines the threats that climate change and fossil fuel use pose to public health:
“…climate change is one of the greatest threats to human health this century. Mitigation of greenhouse gases is essential to protect current and future people form the health impacts of fossil fuel use. If global warming is to be limited to less than two degrees, in keeping with the Paris Agreement, the transition from fossil fuels needs to be made urgently…
“There are also direct health impacts of fossil fuels and the mining and transport of fossil fuels, including from dust, particulates and volatile chemical exposures, mining accidents and heavy metal dispersion.”
The letter ends with a call for Medibank to take action:
“PHAA calls on Medibank to urgently divest from companies whose activities are directly and indirectly causing severe effects on human health by financially supporting fossil fuels.”
To read the full letter click here.
Medibank’s annual general meeting is coming up on 13 November. Join the call for fossil fuel divestment by contacting them using the form below. To find out more about the health insurance industry’s fossil fuel investments click here.