Written by Isabel Falls
According to gofossilfree.org, 732 institutions have divested fully or partially from fossil fuels thus far. These institutions range from museums and universities to governments and pension funds, and are located around the world. Over the past six years, more and more organizations and institutions have experienced pressure from their communities to invest in socially responsible industries. Hampshire College (Amherst, MA) was not only the first school to divest from South Africa during apartheid, but also the first academic institution to divest from fossil fuels in December 2011. Since then, 108 educational institutions worldwide have divested partially or fully from fossil fuels, including recently the University of Massachusetts. Notable museums that have also chosen to divest include the California Academy of Sciences, the Australian Academy of Sciences, the Field Museum in Chicago, and Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens (PA); all four of these museums have fully divested from fossil fuels. The New England Aquarium could be the first aquarium in the world to go fossil free.
Image courtesy of gofossilfree.org.
Individuals can also divest by reevaluating their personal banking and by choosing to make investments in socially responsible organizations. The gofossilfree.org site currently states that over 58,000 individuals are cumulatively divesting $5.2 billion dollars from the fossil fuel industry. To find a full list of institutions that have committed to divest from fossil fuels, click here.