Perhaps it’s fitting that the decedents of Standard Oil’s John Rockefeller are turning away from oil and fossil fuels in favor of renewable energy. After all, when Rockefeller became the world's richest man by investing in oil, oil was among the cutting-edge energy sources. Now today’s cutting edge energy sources are wind, solar energy and other renewable energy sources.
Yesterday (Sept. 22) the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, which is managed by Rockefeller descendants, among them fund President Stephen Heintz, announced that it would begin divesting its investments in fossil fuels. The announcement came before today’s U.N. Climate Summit.
“The Fund has begun a two-step process to divest from investments in fossil fuels, first focusing on limiting its exposure to coal and tar sands, with a goal to reduce these investments to less than one percent of the total portfolio by the end of 2014,” the fund said in a statement. The fund will also divest its remaining fossil fuel assets over the next few years.
"We are quite convinced that if he were alive today, as an astute businessman looking out to the future, he would be moving out of fossil fuels and investing in clean, renewable energy," Heintz said in a statement.
In announcing its divestment of fossil fuel interests in its funds the nonprofit charity also renewed its commitment to its Sustainable Development program and patterned with the Divest-Invest organization. That organization is working to move investments to clean energy. Today (Sept. 23) it said that investments in clean energy from organizations that have sold off their interests in fossil fuels has reached $50 billion and that 800 global investors have committed to divest their holdings in fossil fuels.
“The Fund's initial priorities for investments from this 10 percent pool are focused on support for clean energy technologies and other business strategies that advance energy efficiency, decrease dependence on fossil fuels, and mitigate the effects of climate change,” according to the fund.
“In the coming years, we expect the percentage of mission-aligned investments, including those targeted to clean energy development, will grow as we actively seek solid investments that will advance both our program and long-term financial goals,” the fund stated in September 2014 divestment statement.Tweet