Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Eleven Resources for Responsible Investing Including Divestment from Fossil Fuels

There are a number of tools that make it easier to identify ethically questionable investments. A large and growing number of people, organizations and businesses want to divest from companies that are not socially or environmentally responsible. Responsible investing has augured pro-social change including pressure that helped to topple the racist regime in South Africa.

Divesting from fossil fuels is commonly at the top of the list for responsible investors. This both avoids the risks associated with stranded assets and provides better returns than most fossil fuel investments. Investors know that we are sitting on a carbon bubble as fossil fuels come ever closer to the end of their life cycle. Consequently investors are increasingly concerned about stranded assets

There is also good data supporting the contention that even today fossil fuels are a relatively bad investment. According to recent MSCI research, fossil-free funds have earned a higher return than conventional ones in the last five years (13% versus 11%).

To help investors make responsible decisions there are a slew of tools that help to facilitate the divestment and reinvestment process. Once irresponsible investments have been identified, these resources can be reinvested in a broad range of areas including energy efficiency efforts (eg green building) and renewable energy. Here are 11 resources to help make the process easier. 

1. Divestment 101 from the Responsible Endowment Coalition

2. Personal Guide to Divestment from 350.org

3. Fossil Fuel Divestment Tookit from gofossilfree

4. Divest-Invest also offers some useful resources

5. Oxfam’s Behind the Brands assesses the impact of “the Big 10” food and drink multinationals’

6. Britain’s Social Stock Exchange (SSX) lists stock and bonds from companies deemed pro-social and pro-environmental.

7. The FTSE4Good indices that measure the performance of companies demonstrating strong environmental, social and governance (ESG) practices.

8. Canadian firm IA Clarington has what they call the Inhance Global Equity Fund (subadvised by Vancity credit union).

9. Guide to Socially Responsible Investment from Money Sense

10. Guide to responsible investing from your SRI

11. Socially Responsible Investing Made Easy from the SociallyResponsibleInvestingHub.com

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