Previously published on BillMoyers.com
The Archbishop of South Africa, Desmond Tutu, has called for an international "anti-apartheid-style boycott" against the fossil fuel industry in response to global warming. "People of conscience need to break their ties with corporations financing the injustice of climate change," the Nobel Peace Prize laureate wrote in an essay earlier this month. Tutu's call to action also urges a strategy of divestment, the selling off of stocks and other investments in the name of an urgent cause.
This week, I talk with two leaders who helped inspire the new fossil fuel divestment movement that Tutu is encouraging. Ellen Dorsey is executive director of the Wallace Global Fund and a catalyst in the coalition of 17 foundations known as Divest-Invest Philanthropy. Thomas Van Dyck is Senior Vice President -- Financial Advisor at RBC Wealth Management, and founder of As You Sow, a shareholder advocacy foundation.
They are urging foundations, faith groups, pension funds, municipalities and universities to sell their shares in polluting industries and reinvest in companies committed to climate change solutions.
"The climate crisis is so urgent that if you own fossil fuels, you own climate change," said Dorsey. Van Dyck adds that reinvestment is needed to create "a sustainable economy that's based on the energy of the future, not on the energy of the past."