The world’s super-rich have been gifted with unrivalled access to markets — a central tenet of capitalism. It’s a powerful competitive advantage that benefits them and their companies, but its addictive power has been used to grow the world’s carbon footprint and accelerate climate change.
Now, a new campaign wants to use the fortunes of the super-rich to secure their own crucial emissions-cutting ambitions. A year after calling for climate divestment from “emerging markets” — a move that has drawn ire from climate activists — 350.org launched a new campaign for climate-friendly investing on Wednesday.
The aim is to let wealthy investors know that putting their money into green investment is in their own interests, while protecting poor communities from the environmental consequences of global warming. That way, those countries whose carbon emissions are the worst at the moment won’t be able to prevent progress in addressing global warming.
The new campaign is called “Invest for Climate,” a nod to 350.org’s mission of transitioning investors away from the fossil fuel industry.
The current cost of investing in clean energy and eliminating damaging greenhouse gas emissions is far too high, especially for poor people in poorer countries that are already being hit hardest by climate change, according to 350.org. By purchasing clean energy to feed into a high-yield “climate fund,” such as an “impact” fund, that can be invested in cleaner energy as well as investments in human development, sustainable food systems and tackling agriculture-related poverty, rich people could make big strides in cutting carbon.
“The financial crisis of 2008 illustrated the economic imperative for investors to identify and invest in emerging green assets to stay competitive in the long run,” said 350.org’s Patrick Moore. “We call on the global financial industry to make this new approach the standard for investing in green companies and to design and manage their own green funds.”