Many people make the argument against divestment that it will not succeed in harming the fossil fuel companies because others will invest.
The point of divestment is not to financially harm these massive corporations. (As things begin to get much hotter, financial harm will eventually occur by what world economic experts call the “carbon bubble”.) The point of divestment is to morally tarnish fossil fuel interests and shift the paradigm to a clean energy future that is actually sustainable. OTPP already subscribes to the UN’s “Principles of Responsible Investment”. The OTPP should now sign on to the UN’s “Portfolio Decarbonization Coalition”. This will signal the Plan’s intent to lead the way, as one of the most successful institutional funds in the world, to a saner, more livable world for all – and to a more solid financial future for its members. We want OMERS to do the same.
The ECA believes we will have a MORE successful pension fund by divesting, but we cannot look our children in the eye and say that we are not willing to take any financial risks to have an Earth that supports life. We have a decade to get off fossil fuels. Maybe less. It is just that simple. Let’s act.