Money makes the world go around
Cabaret by Christopher Isherwood
The nuclear weapons and fossil fuel industries are making billions – if not trillions – of dollars fostering a nuclear arms race and destroying the climate.
They have a vested financial interest in producing more and more nuclear weapons and in preventing a shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy. You and I could be supporting them through investments made in these industries on our behalf by our governments, cities, universities, religious organisations, banks or pension funds.
Through divestment we can put pressure on the industries to change. We can highlight the immorality (and stupidity) of making vast short-term profits on the destruction of the planet. And we can help shift the economic environment from one that supports nuclear weapons and fossil fuels, to one that instead supports and incentivizes renewable energy, social needs (like education, health and welfare) and sustainability.
It is our choice. We can either spend the millions and millions of dollars on nuclear weapons and MAD – Mutually Assured Destruction – or on our future, the planet, kids, education, equality. This is what Move the Nuclear Weapons Money is about.
– Roger Waters (Pink Floyd)
Basel Conference: Move the Nuclear Weapons Money
The Basel Peace Office and the Basel Stadt Kanton (city) are hosting an international conference on April 12-13, 2019 to advance personal, local, national and global divestment from the nuclear weapons and fossil fuel industries. The conference, which is open to public, will bring together experts in nuclear weapons and climate change, fund managers & financial advisers, parliamentarians, city officials, religious leaders, students and activists.
Over two days, we will examine successful examples of divestment, discuss how to overcome barriers to establishing ethical investment portfolios, and build the campaigns to advance divestment, disarmament and climate protection in our regions and globally.
Already several governments, cities, religious institutions and universities in Europe, USA and globally have adopted nuclear weapons and or fossil fuel divestment policies. These include the Swiss War Materials Act of 2012, Berlin city policy on non-investment in armed warfare, Göttingen university policy of non-investment in fossil fuels, Cambridge MA city policy of divesting from nuclear weapons, and the UK Quaker meetings divestment from fossil fuels.
Additional impetus for nuclear weapons divestment comes from the 1996 International Court of Justice opinion on nuclear weapons, United Nations adoption of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in 2017 and the UN Human Rights Committee affirmation in October 2018 that nuclear weapons violate the Right to Life as codified in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
68½ million refugees all over the world because of war, while humanitarian organisations are begging for money to feed, shelter, educate those who have lost everything. We all cry for ending the arms race, especially the nuclear arms race and give that money to the needy.
– Uta Zapf, Former Chair of the German Parliament Sub-committee on Disarmament and Arms Control
- Elizabeth Ackermann, President/Mayor of Basel-Stadt and member of Mayors for Peace;
- General (ret) Bernard Norlain, Former Air Defense Commander (France), Vice-President of Initiatives pour le désarmement nucléaire;
- Cllr Audrey Doig, Member of the Renfrewshire City Council, Vice Chair of Nuclear Free Local Authorities, Scotland;
- Fabian Hamilton MP, UK Shadow Minister for Peace and Disarmament;
- Serge Stroobants, Director of European Operations for the Institute for Economics and Peace and the Global Peace Index;
- Robert Smith, ICV Investment Group;
- Rudolf Rechsteiner, President Ethos Foundation;
- Nishant Malapatti, Financial adviser for Blackrock USA;
- Margret Kiener Nellen MP, Head of Swiss delegation to the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly;
- Bärbel Höhn MP, Chair of the Global Renewables Congress;
- Maaike Beenes, Program officer at PAX Netherlands and researcher for Don’t Bank on the Bomb;
- Chayley Collis, Member of Huddersfield Quakers UK;
- Marc Finaud, Senior Fellow, Geneva Centre for Security Policy;
- Laurent Goeschel, Executive Director of Swisspeace;
- Andreas Nidecker MD, President of the Basel Peace Office, Board Member of Swiss Physicians for Social Responsibility;
- Quique Sánchez, Project Manager at Centre Delàs, Coordination team member for the Global Campaign on Military Spending;
- Jürgen Grässlin, Spokesman of the campaign Crying out loud – Stop Weapons Exports!, of the German Peace Society (DFG-VK)
- Keith Suter, Member Club of Rome. Foreign Affairs Editor, TV Channel 7 “The Morning Show” (Australia)
- Ute Finckh-Krämer, former Vice-Chair, Bundestag Subcommittee on Disarmament and Arms Control.
Join the conference
Join us in Basel for this informative and exciting event.
For more information see www.nuclearweaponsmoney.org/basel-conference-2019/