I wrote about key messaging for fossil fuel divestment in a previous post. However–as I was prepping for another meeting with the Harvard administration today–I realized another crucial point.
One argument that I hear all the time is that divestment can’t change the fossil fuel industry. This is how I realized that we need to respond:
When people divested from Big Tobacco, were they trying to take down the tobacco industry? Not directly. They divested because of human health reasons.
When people–and institutions like Harvard–divested from one company (PetroChina) that was colluding with genocide in Darfur, did they think that they were going to stop genocide by divesting from one company? No. But they knew that it was morally wrong to invest in a company that supports mass murder.
Today I say: divest from fossil fuels because it is immoral to be supporting companies that are dooming current and future generations. It’s not about taking down the industry–it’s about taking a stand. If not now, when?