Support for greener pension fund

WUR’s board and staff will persuade ABP pension fund to invest greener.
Illegal deforestation of vegetation native to the Brazilian Amazon forest Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon forest. Foto Shutterstock

That is the outcome of a discussion between the two parties. The discussion followed a petition calling on the Executive Board to speak out against investments by ABP in deforestation in the Amazon.

The petition was signed by more than 430 professors, researchers and support staff.
According to the petition signatories, investing in deforestation contradicts the message WUR sends in its research and education. ‘It is difficult and ethically uncomfortable to research and teach people about the consequences of deforestation for society and the environment when at the same time investments are being made in deforestation in our name.’ 

Oil drilling

Agreement has been reached that the initiators will talk to ABP about the deforestation. ‘It is important that we don’t just point a finger at what is wrong but also come up with solutions,’ says Marielos Peña Claros, the initiative spokesperson. But that is not all. She says there are other areas where ABP’s policy needs to become more sustainable.

The petition got a lot of coverage in the press

One area is its investments in fossil fuels. Last year, another group within WUR took a stand against the investments in oil drilling in the Arctic. Peña Claros is pleased that the Executive Board has now responded so positively. ‘The petition got a lot of coverage in the national press. Other universities and institutions also have initiatives targeting ABP.’

ABP is the pension fund for civil servants and people who work in education. WUR is obliged to use this fund.

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