Fossil-Free CUC congregations

Here is the CUSJ list of Canadian UU congregations that have divested from fossil fuels, with the percentage divested and the date, where available.

Divested congregations

  1. The Unitarian Church of Vancouver.
  2. First Unitarian Church of Victoria divested in 2015.
  3. Unitarian Church of Calgary invested their entire endowment fund in the CUC SRI Trust Fund in August 2015.
  4. Westwood Unitarian Congregation in Edmonton, Alberta, invested their entire endowment fund in the CUC SRI Trust Fund in 2015.*
  5. First Unitarian Church of Ottawa (the home congregation of CUSJ board member Frances Deverell).
  6. The Unitarian Fellowship of Northwest Toronto.
  7. First Unitarian Congregation of Toronto (listed on the 350.org page of divested organizations).
  8. Unitarian Congregation of Niagara.
  9. The Unitarian Fellowship of Peterborough, passed a resolution to divest.
  10. The Unitarian Church of Montréal voted to divest on March 5, 2017.
  11. UU Estrie in Québec’s Eastern Townships divested circa 2007. About 50% is in the CUC SRI trust fund, and around 2015, most of the remaining 50% was invested with Desjardins’ ‘fonds vert’.
*Mike Gallagher, Chairman of the Westwood Unitarian Endowment Fund, writes, “The Board wished to ensure the funds were invested ethically and with a better rate of return than we were getting with the GICs. We have not regretted that decision, since the investment has increased by almost 13% in the past 12 months. Our Board has been very happy with the arrangement with CUC.”

Already fossil-free congregations

The congregations listed above are not the whole picture. Some congregations made the decision to avoid fossil fuels from the outset, and some have confirmed to the CUSJ that they do not have investments, which means they too are fossil free.

  1. South Fraser Unitarian Congregation has always dealt with a local credit union that focuses on socially and environmentally responsible lending/investing.
  2. Beacon Unitarian Church, Coquitlam, B.C.
  3. Elora & Fergus Unitarian Church, Fergus, ON

Smaller congregations, probably fossil free

These congregations did not respond to our survey, but, because of their small size, are unlikely to have investments. If you have evidence to the contrary, please get in touch!

  1. Arborg Unitarian Church, Arborg, Manitoba
  2. Capital Unitarian Universalist Congregation, Victoria, B.C.
  3. Comox Valley Unitarian Fellowship, Comox, B.C.
  4. First Unitarian Church of Hamilton, Hamilton, ON
  5. First Unitarian Fellowship of Nanaimo, Nanaimo, B.C.
  6. Huronia Unitarian Fellowship, Barrie, ON (lay led)

Unknown status

There are 46 CUC member congregations according to their website, so when one subtracts the 20 divested congregations listed on this page, that leaves 26 congregations who may or may not be fossil free, as I write this in May 2017. I suspect that most of these congregations, as typical faith communities, have no investments and are thus fossil-free, but I have not been able to confirm this.

If your congregation has not divested because of lack of information, I urge you to get in touch with the CUC, or with one of the congregations that has divested, for help getting started–or you can contact Cym Gomery or another member of the CUSJ Board for help with your quest.

Note: For a list of faith-based organizations world-wide that have divested, see the GoFossilFree site. For Wes Ernsberger’s list of our American UU counterparts that have divested (and there are many), please click here.