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September 21st, 2017.

Saturday 23 September, Seaford: Over twenty members of the public from across East Sussex will be taking one of the Big Lemon’s bright yellow sustainable buses [2] for a one-day tour of the County this Saturday with the message: ‘Don’t Miss the Bus on Climate Change: Make Pensions Fossil Free’.

The campaigners, who are calling for East Sussex County Council to stop investing local people’s pension monies in fossil fuels (oil, coal & gas), will be bringing the campaign – as well as their own mobile ‘Divest East Sussex’ bus stop and traditionally-dressed bus conductor – to Hastings, Bexhill, Hailsham, Eastbourne, Seaford, Crowborough, Uckfield and Brighton.

The bus tour will arrive in Seaford around 2.45pm on Clinton Place, near the Clinton Centre. A photocall with bus and bus stop will then take place at 3.30pm before the bus departs at 3.30pm.

Investments in fossil fuels have become increasingly controversial, with over 680 institutions in 76 countries, managing assets worth more than $5 trillion, making some form of divestment commitment since 2012. UK public pension funds lost nearly £700m during 2014/15 when the value of their investments in the coal industry plummeted.

The East Sussex Pension Fund – which is administered by the County Council and holds the pensions for a wide range of organisations from across East Sussex – is estimated to have at least £150m invested in fossil fuels. Three members of the Fund – Hastings Borough Council, Lewes Town Council and Brighton and Hove City Council – have already passed motions calling on the Fund to divest from fossil fuels.

Julia Hilton from Divest East Sussex said: ‘We’ve already seen global warming of over 1-degree centigrade. The resulting climate change is now leading to increasingly severe impacts, from rapidly melting sea-ice at the poles to 50-degree heatwaves in India and the UK experiencing increasingly severe flooding. East Sussex County Council (ESCC) currently has £150m of local people’s pension monies invested in fossil fuels. These investments are a disaster for the climate as well as a financial risk for local people’s pensions. We urge people to sign our ‘Divest East Sussex’ petition and help send a strong message to the County Council that it’s time to stop funding the problem and start funding the solutions, like renewable energy and energy efficiency.’