FFI Perspectives Toggle

Harvard’s Carbon Footprint Based on Reserves

Measuring and disclosing the carbon footprint of investments is at the heart of efforts such as the Montreal Carbon Pledge and the Portfolio Decarbonization Coalition, supported by institutional investors representing trillions in assets. It is the first important step in managing the investment risks associated with climate change and carbon regulation. One element of a carbon footprint relates to the current annual CO2 emissions of all...

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Fossil Free Indexes US – A Caveat on Performance Measurement

Research Brief Series Following on a year in which the FFIUS outperformed the S&P 500, it is reasonable to ask how adopting a carbon-aware approach to investing may be expected to affect investment performance over the long term. It is also reasonable to ask which carbon-aware investment approaches might entail the smallest negative effect on performance, if any. Below I discuss an important technical factor to keep in mind when seeking...

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Challenging Notions About the Negative Financial Impact of Divestment

A recently released report by Prof. Daniel Fischel calls into question the efficacy of institutional divestment from fossil fuels, both as a tactic for combating climate change and as a prudent financial strategy. But are the negative financial impacts of divestment really what Fischel claims? An examination of the assumptions made in his report raises doubts. Some of the assumptions made about institutional investing seem unrealistic. For...

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Expanding Divestment: University-Sponsored Defined Contribution Plans

The fossil fuel divestment movement has gained significant momentum across college campuses thanks to organizations like 350.org. On Monday, January 12, 300 Stanford University faculty members called for the divestment of fossil fuel companies from the endowment investment portfolio. While divestment calls have mostly targeted university endowment pools, we have started to see calls by university faculty to provide fossil free investment choices...

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Some Observations on Global Divestment Day 2015

The Debate Global Divestment Day is being marked around the world on February 13 and 14. Not unexpectedly, a vigorous debate around the merits of divestment has emerged. We believe that this debate is a positive sign, for it demonstrates the wide range of individuals and organizations who are engaged in the conversation. In any debate, however, it's important to stick to relevant facts. Throughout the course of February, some flawed but...

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