What we fund is what we fuel – Call to Foundations & Philanthropists to fund clean energy future

European Environment FoundationThis week has the potential to be a momentus one in the growing movement towards a 100% clean energy future.

And it starts here with a call out from 160 leading environmentalists from 46 countries to foundations and philanthropists:

“We, 160 winners of the world’s environmental prizes, call on foundations and philanthropists everywhere to deploy their endowments immediately in the effort to save civilisation,” say the environmental laureates. “The world’s philanthropic foundations, given the scale of their endowments, hold the power to trigger a survival reflex in society, so greatly helping those negotiating the climate treaty.”

Dr Jeremy Leggett, the EEF Trustee who coordinated the declaration, said. “The world’s philanthropic foundations fund work which improve the lives of millions of people around the world, but if they want that work to last they can’t afford to ignore climate change. Investing in a clean energy future is the best way to safeguard their work and their finances.”

I think this is such a key point which Dr Jeremy Leggett makes. To my mind, it is essential that at the heart of every decision we make there has to be the principle of “First Do No Harm” in respect of our environment and our compassion for the human race. It has been to the detriment of our health and wellbeing that business and investment decisions have been made with scant thought given to the impact on our environment and our individual wellbeing. Everything in nature is interlinked and we all need to ensure future decisions take into consideration the full consequences of our actions and ensure we do no harm.

The European Environment Foundation (EEF) will now write to foundations individually asking them to use their financial power to create a tipping point in climate action.

1. By investing directly in clean energy companies and low-carbon projects;

2. By withdrawing investments from fossil fuel companies or campaigning as shareholders for them not to develop new resources;

3. By making grants to support clean energy start-ups and stimulate the development of low-carbon markets.

The good news is that 17 organisations with assets of nearly $2billion have committed to pull their investments out of fossil fuels and back clean energy instead.

But there is so much more that could be done – and fast.

There are no shortage of clean energy projects to invest in and public support for renewables is extremely high so isn’t now the perfect time for foundations and philanthropists to work with the financial community and invest their money into fuelling a very different kind of world?

I’ll leave the last word to Keith Wheaton-Green, one of the Environmental Laureates who I have the pleasure to know:

“I’m proud to be alongside such people as the head of Ecotricity, Good Energy and Solar Century in making this appeal. The wealthy of this world currently seem to have more power and are more able to foster high achievement than governments. Let’s hope they rise to this challenge. We don’t have much time left to act.”

For further excellent blogs from Keith on all things renewable, do check out www.dorsetenergized.co.uk

Do YOU support 100% Clean Energy Future? Choose a way YOU can take action

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