The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) has now fully divested from fossil fuel investments, as part of its ongoing commitment to becoming a more environmentally sustainable organisation.
In November 2021, the RPS Assembly said the Society would sell any investments that it held in companies that extract fossil fuels, such as coal, gas, oil and tar sands, by the end of 2022.
In March 2022, Rick Russell, director of operations at the RPS, said that the Society had already shifted 80% of its investments away from fossil fuels.
In a press release issued on 1 September 2022, Claire Anderson, president of the RPS, said she was “very proud” that the commitment had been met four months ahead of the target date.
“This is an important milestone for us in our efforts to help tackle the climate and ecological emergency. There’s still plenty to be achieved and we are working hard to become a more sustainable organisation,” she added.
In September 2021, the RPS formally declared a climate and ecological emergency, leading it to publish four sustainability policies focusing on prescribing and medicines use; medicines waste; prevention of ill health; and improving infrastructure.
In February 2022, the Society joined the UK Health Alliance on Climate Change — a coalition of bodies representing more than 950,000 health professionals who advocate for public health issues to be included in the UK’s response to climate change.