Fossil fuels are a great investment. That’s according to most investment bankers and pension fund managers, anyway. Money you put in is pretty secure, and you make a nice steady profit. That's why lots of pension funds, asset portfolios and company shares are invested in oil and gas.
There are plenty of clever financial reasons why that’s not true, but the really big, glaring, (fossilised)-elephant-in-the-room is climate change. To stop climat change we need to keep fossil fuels in the ground, not invest in their future.
Thanks to some serious campaigning, lots of organisations are realising that and selling those fossil fuel shares. In fact, in the last few years over 800 companies and organisations have bucked the oily trend and pledged to divest a total of $50 billion.
But the part that we really love, that makes our socks roll up and down, is what's happening to the money afterwards. Plenty of those who've divested are now blazing a trail and reinvesting in renewable energy and environmental projects. Using the money that was hurting the planet to help build the future!
So to celebrate this week’s Global Divestment Day, we’ve collected a few of our favourite divestment and reinvestment stories to show that #itshappening all over the world, and to encourage others to join in.
The Republic of the Marshall Islands, where the university is based, is already seeing the impacts of climate change. But instead of just talking about it they decided to take action.
The council put £12m of its pension fund into the Westmill Solar project, which generates enough power for 1,400 homes.
The Church of Sweden removed the last of its $690m portfolio from fossil fuels in September. They are now investing in sustainable funds and other microfinance green projects.
Photo: Robert Fairchild/ Flickr