Monday, January 19, 2015

Divestment: A small but growing problem for fossil-fuel

"Inspired by global efforts to reduce carbon emissions, environmentally focused donors want institutions to divest themselves of investments in companies connected with fossil fuels like petroleum and coal," John F. Wasik reports in the New York Times.
"Momentum for divestment has been building for years, pushed primarily by the environmentalist Bill McKibben and his group. But the fossil-free campaign has attracted some prominent participants lately.
"In September, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, the $860 million philanthropy built on John D. Rockefeller’s petroleum fortune, said it would join the divestment movement. It aligned with nearly 200 institutions, a number that has nearly doubled since the beginning of 2014, according to, a divestment campaign.
"All told, groups managing an estimated $50 billion have joined the movement, and nearly $3 billion has been sold or pledged to be sold from individual portfolios. While that’s small change in the multitrillion-dollar world of institutional investing, the movement continues to grow.
“Fossil-free is the new apartheid,” says Thomas Nowak, a certified financial planner with Quantum Financial Planning who is based in Grayslake, Ill., and specializes in green investing. “This movement has legs. A large number of my clients are asking for fossil-free portfolios.”

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