New York Mayor Bill de Blasio’s move against the fossil fuel industry makes news in the US.
The biggest news in the sustainability sector came out of New York City this month, where mayor Bill de Blasio announced a plan to divest the City’s pension holdings from fossil fuel reserves over the next five years. New York City holds about $5 billion in investments in fossil fuel companies – and up against big oil, this might seem like a drop in the bucket. But we hope it’s enough to make other jurisdictions and institutions sit up, take notice and take similar steps. As Bill McKibben points out in Rolling Stone’s ‘The Case for Fossil-Fuel Divestment’: “The logic of divestment couldn’t be simpler: if it’s wrong to wreck the climate, it’s wrong to profit from that wreckage.”
There was more from the announcement – with de Blasio firing shots directly across the bow of big oil, announcing a newly-filed lawsuit by the City against the world’s biggest carbon offenders: Chevron, BP, ConocoPhillips, Exxon and Shell. New York plans to seek billions in damages to offset the money it will need to deal with the effects of climate change on the city. Including flooding of 7.5 feet or more every five years by 2030, purported to be just one of the outcomes caused by global warming (as reported by The Atlantic), which the cost to mitigate and manage, even for a major economic-driver like NYC, is untenable.
So what does this mean for eco-focused businesses?
Divested money has to be reinvested somewhere – and it’s headed for sustainable business and renewables.
The demand for green energy sources is exploding. According to a report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance, renewable energy sources will account for over 60% of the 5,579 gigawatts of new generation capacity by 2030, and 65% of the $7.7 trillion in power investment (while fossil fuels will see their share of power generation fall to 46%).
To capitalize on the upsurge and attract attention for your brand, make sure your business isn’t just communicating your offering to your target customer – make sure it’s also communicating your brand’s value proposition to the planet alongside.
As McKibben also points out: “..the kids are going to win, and when they do, it’s going to matter.” Efficient businesses with sustainable or renewable models are today’s smart investment for a better future, not just for the planet, but also for everyone’s bottom line (and what could be better than that!).
Today, New York – tomorrow, your city?
Do you need to influence value for your renewables brand ahead of a capital raise or an IPO? Email us and tell us about it [email protected].