AN international coalition of Catholic institutions have pledged to take their money out of fossil fuels.

The commitment by 35 religious orders, lay organisations and social justice movements to "divest" their money from the polluting energy sources was announced by the Global Catholic Climate Movement (GCCM).

Those signed up to the move include the Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund (Sciaf), humanitarian aid organisation Caritas Internationalis, three Catholic banks and several diocese.

Caritas Internationalis president Cardinal Luis Tagle said: "The poor are suffering greatly from the climate crisis and fossil fuels are among the main drivers of this injustice."

Sciaf director Alistair Dutton said: "The world is facing ecological, humanitarian and moral crises, as we approach the point of no return from irreversible global warming and climate chaos. Highly polluting fossil fuels are a major driving force behind this.

"The communities Sciaf works with in developing countries are already struggling to cope with the impact of climate change."

The 35-strong group joins 60 Catholic organisations that previously decided not to invest in fossil fuels.

Tomas Insua, executive director of GCCM, which co-ordinated the action, said: "When it comes to protecting our common home, we have not a moment to lose."