WASHINGTON – As the 50th Earth Day nears, most Americans are quarantined inside, and many of them are trying to figure out how to help the environment while the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic makes it dangerous to go outside. On Thursday, New York Times contributor Tim Gray moderated a Facebook Live panel viewed by hundreds, featuring Bill McKibben of 350.org and Leslie Samuelrich of Green Century Capital Management. These experts discussed how many environmentally inclined Americans have added fossil fuel free investing to the set of tools they use to protect the Earth.
“The divestment movement has grown beyond all expectations, and continues to expand rapidly,” said McKibben. “It’s always useful to share a few stories of the thousands of remarkable organizers who made that possible!”
Many of the organizers McKibben lauded and others have been sustaining environmental action from their homes throughout the coronavirus crisis. The Trump administration’s pandemic response has sought ways to soften the economic blow for oil, gas and coal companies, despite those industries’ adverse effects on public health and the environment and their unwillingness to change what they consider business as usual.
A growing number of investors understand that the fossil fuel industry’s business model is incompatible with what scientists say we must do to slow global warming. We urgently need to leave that era behind, become more energy efficient, and increase our reliance on renewable energy sources such as solar and wind.
“People concerned about the climate crisis don’t have to support the most environmentally-reckless corporations on Earth with their investments,” said Samuelrich. “It’s possible to save for your future and invest fossil fuel free.”
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