“Following the government’s decisions to invest yet more money in fossil fuels, including the approval of Rosebank, the biggest undeveloped oilfield in the UK, Ealing Friends of the Earth have been raising awareness about ethical banking. It’s an often overlooked way we can take personal steps toward reducing investment in fossil fuels along with achieving other positive environmental and social benefits.
Ealing FoE member Jon recently gave his finances an ethical overhaul: “I am a father of a three-year-old daughter living in South Ealing and look for ethical choices to contribute towards a sustainable future. Hoping to have an answer when my daughter one day asks me: What did you do to help look after the world we are inheriting? So when I looked to open a children’s account for her, I wanted to make a choice that was not contributing to the destruction of our planet’s ecosystem.”
“One of the most significant changes we can make in our lives to protect our environment, climate and our society is to make ethical choices for our current account, savings, debts, loans, mortgages and pensions. And it’s quick and simple to change your current account with the Current Account Switching Service.”
Online tools like bank.green and Ethical Consumer give a round-up of the ethical credentials of your bank and offer alternatives.
Member Jon added: “Ethical can mean different things to different people. But since my number one concern right now is the climate crisis, I went with Yorkshire Building Society for my daughter, which has no investment in the fossil fuel industry according to bank.green and has a branch in Ealing. Then I moved on to decarbonising my personal account, before starting in on my mortgage and pension!”
There are a number of banks with strong ethical credentials that have branches in Ealing, including Co-operative Bank and Nationwide Building Society.
Ealing Friends of the Earth emphasises that it is not a financial advice service. But we are all finding ways to support each other in the community to face the environmental challenges of our time. And disinvesting from practices that harm the environment is one way to do that.