“350.org is building a global climate movement…The number 350 means climate safety: to preserve a livable planet, scientists tell us we must reduce the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere from its current level of 400 parts per million to below 350 ppm… We believe that a global grassroots movement can hold our leaders accountable to the realities of science and the principles of justice.”
A technique employed by 350.org involves fossil fuel stock divestment by individuals and organizations. Getting people to sell their fossil fuel stock may force that industry to ‘retool’ and pursue renewable energy technologies to sustain their revenue stream. Here are a few challenges that must be overcome to achieve success:
- ‘Retooling’ assumes that enough people will sell their fossil fuel stocks and that this industry will succumb to the financial pressure. How much pressure will be enough? Will Oil & Gas forego their huge investment already made in exploration, well completion, oil/ gas pipeline transmission/ distribution networks, refining and retail sales?
- Another issue is that Oil & Gas are inexorably entwined in our economy. For example, the rise and fall of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) over the last 30 years correlates well with variations in oil consumption. How will the expanded use of renewable technologies and the decline of fossil fuels affect the GDP
- 350.org, may want to also consider how political campaign contributions affect the regulatory and tax processes for the benefit of fossil fuel industries and to the detriment of renewable energy organizations.
350.org hopes that a critical mass of people will coalesce around fossil fuel stock divesture and pursue renewable energy (i.e., reach a “Tipping Point”). In contrast, the German government plans to achieve 40 percent renewable energy by 2025. Which approach has the best chance of success? Bottom up (people) or top down (government)?350.org, Fossil Fuels, GDP, German Renewable Energy, Gross Domestic Product, Oil and Gas, Renewable Energy, SBIR Consultant, Tipping Point