A coalition of 17 foundations, representing almost $1.8 billion in investment, plans to divest from fossil fuel companies in its portfolios and invest more in clean energy, leaders of the effort said Jan. 30.
The Wallace Global Fund, the Ben & Jerry’s Foundation, the Educational Foundation of America and others hope their “historic step,” the first divestment campaign led by a group of foundations, will encourage other philanthropies to follow suit.
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The foundations involved in the Divest-Invest Philanthropy initiative say they have a fiduciary duty to protect their endowments from risks posed by climate change.
“It is clear, if we own fossil fuels, we own climate change,” Ellen Dorsey, executive director of the Wallace Global Fund (WGF), which is leading the effort, said Jan. 30 during a call with reporters. “We cannot be invested in the industry that is driving the climate crisis and we certainly can’t have investments undercutting our grant making.”