Something is shifting in the fossil fuel industry. It’s no longer business as usual for the ‘fossils’ and the governments that support them. People around the world are becoming keenly aware of the many ways the burning of fossils is wreaking havoc on our planet. Plus a new powerful wave of the climate movement has been swelling up over the last couple of years—Fridays for Future, Extinction Rebellion, Sunrise.
Fossils Beware: Something is Shifting
‘We are in a climate emergency and we must act NOW’ is increasingly on our minds. And thus the world is starting to turn on the fossils much like it did on tobacco a few decades back.
“The best reason to divest fossil fuel stock is that you’d like to help preserve a livable planet. Another reason is so that you won’t lose your money” tweeted Bill McKibben just days after CNBC‘s Jim Cramer’s comments that he’s “done with fossil fuels” because they’re “in the death knell phase.”
The best reason to divest fossil fuel stock is that you’d like to help preserve a livable planet.
Another reason is so that you won’t lose your money.https://t.co/cigoyKWqfc
— Bill McKibben (@billmckibben) February 3, 2020
In his own tweet, Jim Cramer added “You can tell that the world’s turned on them, and it’s actually kind of happening very quickly. You’re seeing divestiture by a lot of different funds. It’s going to be a parade… that says look, ‘These are tobacco, and we’re not going to own them.'”
Oil stocks are in the death knell phase, says @jimcramer. “The world is turning on them…new kinds of money managers who frankly want to appease younger people who believe you can’t ever make a fossil fuel company sustainable.” pic.twitter.com/PV63RSudrf
— Squawk Box (@SquawkCNBC) January 31, 2020
Georgetown University is a world-renowned international student-centered research institution and academic centre in Washington DC. Its recent decision to divest from fossil fuels is boosting student-led anti-fossil fuel campaigns at universities across the U.S.
Lindsay Meiman, a spokesperson for 350.org—which has spearheaded the global movement to demand pension funds, university endowments, and other institutions divest from oil, coal, and gas companies—said Cramer is only confirming what many market observers already understand.
“The financial tides are turning away from fossil fuels. Coal, oil, and gas companies are not only the perpetrators of the climate crisis we’re now experiencing, but have also dangerously underperformed markets over the last decade,” Meiman told Common Dreams. “As we enter the climate decade, we’re demanding polluters pay for their destruction, and that all institutions and politicians cut ties from toxic fossil fuels to reinvest in a world that puts our health and safety first.”
Even Wall Street and the banking industry are starting to show nervousness over the unavoidable downturn of the fossils. Goldman Sachs has just downgraded its stock assessment for ExxonMobil and is advising investors to dump their oil and gas shares.
Fossil Free Banking
Big banks have invested trillions in fossil fuels since the Paris Agreement of 2015. Canada’s top five banks alone—RBC, CIBC, BMO, Scotiabank & Toronto-Dominion—financed US$ 338 billion in fossil fuel projects in the first 3 years after the Agreement.
For many of us, this is unconscionable! Our banks have become partners with the fossil fuel industry and are thus part of the climate problem. The good news is that the average person can do something about this by looking at alternative banking—fossil-free banking. Yes you can switch to a fossil-free-bank.
We have to hit them where it hurts.
Feb 6, 2020
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We are sitting on the cusp of the biggest energy revolution ever. New and disruptive technologies combined with dramatic market growth in renewables are already causing what Tony Seba refers to as the good disruption—new products that open up new markets and transform or destroy existing ones at the same time.
Perhaps the missing link has been the inertia of the financial sector and the fossil fuel industry to follow the parade. But something is shifting.
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