This is how I visualize the origin, structure, and goals of the fossil fuel divestment movement.
For decades people have been trying to push for governmental action on climate change–on local, national, and international levels. But these efforts have largely been blocked by the fossil fuel industry. Their lobbying power and spreading of climate denial have had an undeniable effect.
So the people decided that they would target the root of the problem, the source of political inaction: the fossil fuel industry. The only way that masses of people could have an effect in entire industry is through divestment. And this is what happened. People are still working through the political system, but the mass movement has BYPASSED our government and gone straight to the fossil fuel industry.
The goal is to open space in the political system for meaningful climate legislation. This is the only way that a large-scale societal transition away from fossil fuels and towards renewable energy can take place.