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German doctors calling for divestment from fossil fuels

Following the examples of several international medical groups, a coalition of German doctors now calls for the divestment of doctor’s pension funds.

In view of the huge health risks associated with climate change, and following the scientific consensus that most of the known fossil fuel reserves need to stay in the ground in order to avoid a global temperature rise beyond 2 degrees Celsius, German doctors argue that investments in the exploitation of further fossil fuel resources are at odds with the protection of human health.

They are therefore asking pension funds of doctors from Germany to review their investment portfolios, and make a move towards withdrawing their assets from funds or companies based on fossil fuel extraction, especially coal mining.

The group of doctors who supported the appeal from the beginning includes several heads of departments of medical or scientific institutes, as well as medical schools. The call further has the support of five health organisations, including the German section of International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, German Society of Social Psychiatry, VdÄÄ Association of democratic doctors, MEZIS, a group fighting for transparency and accountability in the medical professions, and the medical student group GandHI.

The online platform We Act which allowed the doctors to gather supporters, has sparked eighteen regional or local campaigns, each targeting a different regional branch of doctors’ pension funds across the federal state of Germany. Several regional calls already have the support of 200 to 400 doctors.

The regional calls can still be signed by further doctors who are, or will be receiving their pension from that fund, via this link

Originally posted on 21 April 2016

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