(COMMON DREAMS) Deirdre Fulton, January 27, 2016 — “The arguments against divestment are all quickly falling away,” said Jamie Henn, communications director for 350.org, after United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon urged financial leaders to double their clean energy investments by 2020 at a global investor summit on Wednesday.
“Today, I call on the investor community to build on the strong momentum from Paris and seize the opportunities for clean energy growth,” the Secretary General said at the 2016 Investor Summit on Climate Risk, the first such gathering since the Paris Agreement was hammered out in December. “Sustainable clean energy is growing but not nearly fast enough to meet energy demand of what science says. The investor community is of critical importance if we are going to move from aspiration to action.”
“We cannot continue to invest in coal…we cannot afford to look for new oil and gas sources.”—Christiana Figures, UN Framework Convention on Climate ChangeIn saying so, the United Nations “has made it clear that there is no way to meet the goals agreed to at the Paris Climate Summit if we keep investing in fossil fuels,” Henn argued. “Divesting from coal, oil and gas and reinvesting in just, sustainable energy solutions is one of the most important things an institution can do to help combat the climate crisis.”
Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, echoed that call, telling the crowd of more than 500 investors in New York:
“We cannot continue to invest in coal…we cannot afford to look for new oil and gas sources. By 2030, the window of investing in high carbon needs to close. As for capital, forget 2050, forget 2030. Where capital goes in the next five years will decide what kind of world we have.”