NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Opinion

June 30, 2014

We need to change 'business as usual'

To the editor:

While Joe D’Amore is correct in stating that fossil fuel companies have a history of solid return on investment, he fails to take into account the adverse affect that climate change will have on the market.

There is a global political consensus that we must not surpass 2°C of warming if we wish to avoid catastrophic climate change. To remain below this 2°C threshold, fossil fuel companies must keep 80 percent of the carbon in their reserves underground. This unburnable carbon results in an overvaluation of fossil fuel companies, by some estimates, of up to $20 trillion.

Clearly, fossil fuel companies are not a stable long-term investment. If unchecked, fossil fuel companies will continue to burn the carbon in their reserves until the last drop, committing us to a world of climate chaos. Fossil fuel divestment sends a strong signal to the market, politicians and society that it is no longer acceptable to continue “business as usual,” and that we must transition to energy sources that are compatible with a livable climate.

Massachusetts has the opportunity to be a leader in this transition, and divesting from fossil fuels serves as an important stepping-stone to achieving a stable future.

Jamie Garuti

Medford

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