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The Rockefellers divest from fossil fuels. Exxonmobil? “Morally reprehensible”

The Rockefeller family fund confirms it will give up fossil fuels. “It makes little sense—financially or ethically—to continue holding investments in these companies”.

Another era comes to an end. The heirs of John D. Rockefeller, one of the richest men to have lived in the United States and the businessman who owed his fortune to the Standard Oil, officially withdraw all investments in fossil fuels. This process “will be completed as quickly as possible”.

 

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A burning oil platform © Handout / Getty

 

The process already started in September 2014, during the Climate Summit 2014, and was confirmed in these days in a statement released by the foundation that explains its decision in these terms: “While the global community works to eliminate the use of fossil fuels, it makes little sense—financially or ethically—to continue holding investments in these companies. There is no sane rationale for companies to continue to explore for new sources of hydrocarbons”.

 

We cannot be associated with a company exhibiting such apparent contempt for the public interest

But there’s more. Martha, John, Laurance, Nelson and David Rockefeller said that the conduct of Exxonmobil was “morally reprehensible” since “evidence appears to suggest that the company worked since the 1980s to confuse the public about climate change’s march, while simultaneously spending millions to fortify its own infrastructure against climate change’s destructive consequences and track new exploration opportunities as the Arctic’s ice receded”.

 

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Stephen Heintz (left), Valerie Rockefeller Wayne (middle), Steven Rockefeller (right).

 

And they added: “Appropriate authorities will determine if the company violated any laws, but as a matter of good governance, we cannot be associated with a company exhibiting such apparent contempt for the public interest”. The signs are evident: from oil-dependent Arab countries that are investing in renewable sources to Shell that last February announced that it will give up “offshore drilling activities in the foreseeable future”.

 

“But history moves on, as it must”, the note reads. “Indeed, it is past time for all people of good will to do everything in their collective power to make our new path one that recognises the deep interdependence between humanity’s future and the health of our natural systems”.

Featured image David McNew/Getty

Translated by

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