Resources

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News articles and other media publications on fossil fuel divestment and carbon free investment.

Global Warming’s Terrifying New Math

Bill McKibben, Rolling Stone

Three key numbers you need to know when discussing climate change impacts and action: 2° Celsius, 565 Gigatons, and 2,795 Gigatons. McKibben argues that “at this point, effective action would require actually keeping most of the carbon the fossil-fuel industry wants to burn safely in the soil, not just changing slightly the speed at which it’s burned.”

The Coming Carbon Asset Bubble

Al Gore and David Blood, The Wall Street Journal

At least two thirds of fossil fuel reserves will remain in the ground as stranded assets.  Gore and Blood outline three broad risks to fossil fuel assets investors are ignoring by continuing to invest in fossil fuels: 1) regulation (direct or indirect), 2) changing market forces, and 3) sociopolitical pressures.

Unburnable Fuel: Either Governments are Not Serious About Climate Change or Fossil-Fuel Firms are Overvalued

The Economist

Markets can misprice risk, as investors in subprime mortgages discovered in 2008. Several recent reports suggest that markets are now overlooking the risk of “unburnable carbon”.

Old Tactic in New Climate Campaign

New York Times

President Obama: “Convince those in power to reduce our carbon pollution. Push your own communities to adopt smarter practices. Invest. Divest.”

After Bubbles in Dotcoms and Housing, Here’s the Carbon Bubble

Wall Street Journal

You’re familiar with the dot com bubble and U.S. housing bubble. True financial geeks may even know of the Poseidon nickel bubble. But have you heard of the carbon bubble?

This Could be Exxon Mobil’s Biggest Threat

CNBC

In a speech last week, the Secretary General of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development had a message for oil and gas investors: Their biggest risk isn’t a spill or a blowout or a storm. Rather, it is stranded assets in a carbon-entangled world.

We Need Climate-Change Risk Assessment

Michael Bloomberg, Hank Paulson and Tom Steyer, Washington Post

If the United States were run like a business, its board of directors would fire its financial advisers for failing to disclose the significant and material risks associated with unmitigated climate change.

How the Carbon Bubble Will Pop

Washington Post

It’s now clear that any sort of solution to the climate change crisis that requires action from Congress — where many members of one party refuse to admit the problem exists at all — is pretty much impossible. But there are plenty of ways Obama can use executive action — not to solve the problem, perhaps, but to forestall doom as long as possible.

Report: Climate Change May Pose Threat to Economic Growth

CNN

Nearly a third of the world’s economic output will come from countries facing “high” to “extreme” risks from the impacts of climate change within 12 years, according to a new report.

Climate Change Seen Posing Risk to Food Supplies

New York Times

Climate change will pose sharp risks to the world’s food supply in coming decades, potentially undermining crop production and driving up prices at a time when the demand for food is expected to soar, scientists have found.

Global warming: Why is IPCC Report So Certain About the Influence of Humans?

The Guardian

100 percent of the global warming over the past 60 years is human-caused, according to the IPCC’s latest report.

 

REPORTS AND ANALYSES

Divest

Divestment is a bold, dynamic escalation of the climate conversation that highlights the fossil fuel industry’s central role in climate change.

Unburnable Carbon 2013: Wasted Capital and Stranded Assets

Unburnable Carbon 2013: Wasted Capital and Stranded Assets

Carbon Tracker Institute

Valuation and ratings aren’t routinely pricing stranded carbon assets. As a result, regulators and investors need to review their approach to systemic risks and recognize that capital spent on finding and developing more reserves is largely wasted.

Stranded Assets and the Fossil Fuel Divestment Campaign: What Does Divestment Mean for the Valuation of Fossil Fuel Assets?

Stranded Assets and the Fossil Fuel Divestment Campaign: What Does Divestment Mean for the Valuation of Fossil Fuel Assets? [PDF]

Smith School of Enterprise and Environment at Oxford University

A framework for and evaluation of the impact of divestment campaigns focusing on fossil fuels, which offers recommendations for investors, fossil fuel companies, and campaigners.

Stranded Carbon Assets: Why and How Carbon Risks Should Be Incorporated in Investment Analysis

Stranded Carbon Assets: Why and How Carbon Risks Should Be Incorporated in Investment Analysis

Generation Investment Management

An explanation of the “carbon budget”, a summary of the risk facing investors holding carbon-intensive assets, and suggested investor actions starting from identifying carbon risks to full divestment from fossil fuel-intensive assets.

Oil and Carbon Revisited

Oil and Carbon Revisited: Value at Risk from ‘Unburnable’ Reserves

HSBC

The IEA(s World Energy Outlook (2012 edition) estimated that in order to have a 50% chance of limiting the rise in global temperatures to 2ºC, only a third of current fossil fuel reserves can be burned before 2050. The balance could be regarded as unburnable.

What A Carbon-Constrained Future Could Mean for Oil Companies' Creditworthiness

What A Carbon-Constrained Future Could Mean for Oil Companies’ Creditworthiness [PDF]

Standard & Poor’s Rating Service

Financial models that use past performance and creditworthiness may be insufficient to guide investors on the effects of future carbon constraints on the oil sector. Independent oil and gas produces should see deterioration in their financial risk profiles to a degree that could lead to negative outlook revisions and then down grades over 2014-2017 and majors could face pressure in 2016-2017.

Invest

Carbon-free investment allows markets to accelerate the transition to a low carbon economy while helping investors hedge against the carbon bubble.

Cleantech Redefined

As You Sow, Kachan & Co., Responsible Endowments Coalition

Cleantech infrastructure, technology and services are revolutionizing how we make, grow, transport and consume things. Is there still time for investors to make good returns in cleantech? Yes.Cleantech Redefined explains why.

Do the Investment Math: Building a Carbon-Free Portfolio

Aperio Group, As You Sow

Do the Investment Math: Building a Carbon-Free Portfolio is aimed at promoting a financial risk assessment of carbon divestment.

Institutional Pathways to Fossil-Free Investing: Endowment Management in a Warming World [PDF]

Tellus Institute

Describes the risk and rewards as well as case studies and a step by step “how to” guide on investing in a cleaner, more sustainable future, including all asset classes.

Resilient Portfolios & Fossil-Free Pensions [PDF]

HIP: Human Impact + Profit

The paper advocates for divestment as a risk reduction measure and explores investment options for city & state pensions.

Bonds and Climate Change: The State of the Market in 2013

HSBC & Climate Bonds Initiative

A 2013 look at Climate Bond size, regional markets, market outlook, credit ratings, and seven themes: transport, energy, climate finance, buildings & industry, agriculture & forestry, waste & pollution control, and water.

Investing to Curb Climate Change: A Guide for the Institutional Investor [PDF]

US SIF

This guide shows investors how to move toward a low-carbon portfolio.

 

KEY LINKS

Gofossilfree.org basic information and resources on fossil fuel divestment. http://gofossilfree.org/resources/

350MA resources on the Massachusetts fossil fuel divestment campaign. http://350ma.org/campaigns/divestment/

Greenfaith resources for faith groups seeking fossil fuel divestment. http://greenfaith.org/programs/divest-and-reinvest

U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Headline Release, 9/26/2013. http://www.ipcc.ch/news_and_events/docs/ar5/ar5_wg1_headlines.pdf

Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs Climate Change Adaptation Report, 2011. http://www.onlineethics.org/File.aspx?id=25960