There is a growing voice internationally calling for divestment in fossil fuels. Have you seen the South African Fossil Fuel Divestment campaign? What is it all about?
“Divestment is the opposite of investment – it means getting rid of stocks, bonds, or investment funds that are unethical or morally ambiguous.”
According to FossilFree.org, The biggest and most well know historical divestment campaign happened around the issue of Apartheid in South Africa. “55 campuses had divested from companies doing business in South Africa. 26 state governments, 22 counties, and 90 cities, including some of the nation’s biggest, took their money from multinationals that did business in the country. The South African divestment campaign helped break the back of the Apartheid government and usher in an era of democracy and equality.”
Have you thought about what is happening with your money when you put it into retirement funds, stock, savings, bonds etc? Sometimes you are aware of exactly where it is being invested but sometimes it is part of a portfolio. If you are concerned about the effect of Fossil fuels on the environment, you don’t want your money funding more investment in fossil fuels. And yet energy is a part of many mixed portfolios.
More importantly, what you are doing in your personal capacity is also being done on larger scale by organisations, educational institutions, religious organisations, investors and fund managers and other institutions to generate income to help them run. Organisations like these can have a real impact in a divestment campaign.
The South African Fossil Free Divestment organisation is running a Thundafund campaign to raise funds so that they can target these larger organisations calling for them to divest in “dirty energy”. South Africa is a country that relies heavily on fossil fuels for energy and is looking to expand their investment in them. If you feel strongly against this, have a look at the South African Fossil Free campaign. Your support could make a difference.