CalPERS, Divest from DAPL!

The California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS), California’s giant pension fund, owns a major chunk of Energy Transfer Partners, the company building the fracked-oil Dakota Access Pipeline through the Standing Rock Sioux sacred lands in North Dakota. As of December 8, CalPERS owns 1,064,034 shares worth $36.8 million. In addition, CalSTRS, the schoolteachers’ retirement fund, owns debt securities (bonds) worth $28.7 million.

California retirees shouldn’t be investing in this pipeline — investing in the destruction of their children's future. The pipeline is intended to carry fracked crude oil from North Dakota’s Bakken shalefields through North and South Dakota, Iowa, and Illinois. In the process of construction, Energy Transfer Partners has already damaged numerous sacred sites and would drill under the Missouri River, the sole drinking water source of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. The Army Corps of Engineers denied the permit to drill under the Missouri, but we expect the incoming Trump administration to ram the project through — if investors like CalPERS and CalSTRS keep backing this foolhardy project.

If CalPERS and CalSTRS don’t voluntarily divest, the California legislature will consider a bill, AB20, to require divestiture by 2018. So the smart money is on getting out of a climate-destroying project early.
These pension funds are overseen by boards that include union and public officials, including California Treasurer John Chiang and Controller Betty Yee. They are directly accountable to the people of California and have a responsibility to all people to make ethical and responsible investments.
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To California State Treasurer John Chiang, California State Controller Betty Yee, and the other board members of CalPERS and CalSTRS:

Divest fully from the Dakota Access Pipeline companies!

 

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