On Monday morning, nine activists from Greenpeace Luxembourg placed two human-sized signs in front of the headquarters of the Luxembourg pension fund that read "Caution - Greenwash".
Better known as the Compensation Fund (Fonds de Compensation; FDC), the Luxembourg pension fund claims to invest in a sustainable and socially responsible manner. However, according to Greenpeace, the fund injected more than half a billion euros in 2019 alone in climate-damaging companies such as Shell, BP, Total and Chevron. Greenpeace has expressed its opposition to such "deceptive practices" and demanded immediate measures on the part of Luxembourg's parliament and government to ensure the withdrawal of public funds granted to the FDC from climaticide companies.
One Greenpeace activist Marguerite explained: “The pension fund is investing my future retirement pension in the same companies that fuel climate change and deprive me of a future. I'm here to tell them it's enough. Fund managers are putting our future at risk and we're here to shout it loud and clear".
A total of 1,237 institutions representing more than $14 trillion have already divested from fossil fuels worldwide; 13% of these institutions are pension funds and this figure is only increasing.
“More and more banks, insurance companies, and pension and investment funds are stopping their financial support for gas, oil and coal. But neither the climate crisis nor the carbon bubble seem to interest FDC officials and the minister in charge, Romain Schneider. In doing so, they endanger not only the future of the planet, but also the interests of future retirees," commented Martina Holbach, Climate and Finance Campaign Manager at Greenpeace Luxembourg.
On 2 July 2020, Luxembourg's Minister of Social Security, Romain Schneider, and the President of the FDC, Fernand Lepage, answered questions about the FDC's investment policy in the competent parliamentary committee. However, both the minister and the FDC president continued to defend the climate investment policy of the FDC.
"Faced with the negligence of the FDC, we call on the government and the parliament to take immediate measures to divert public funds from companies that harm the environment," said Myrna Koster, Climate Justice Campaign Manager at Greenpeace Luxembourg. "In addition to protecting our livelihoods and respecting human rights, this turning point is essential for the long-term guarantee of pensions for present and future generations".