Laugh of the week – #ethical investments?

I had a good laugh this week at the story that was picked up by an investment management industry newsletter. An investment management company calling itself Australian Ethical reportedly said it would decarbonise its portfolio by 2050. Citing the urgent need to do something to prevent catastrophic climate change, the team at Australian Ethical is really getting into gear. Urgently. When I have something urgent to do, my timetable for getting it done often extends into the 2060s, so 2050 clearly reflects the degree of urgency this team really has.

Put aside for a moment that climate alarmists have been warning for at least 15 years that unless action was taken in the next 5 years, it would be too late. The urgency period is then extended by 5 years after each prior 5 years passes by. The 50 million climate refugees that would be wandering the world by 2010, famously predicted by the UN in 2005, didn’t turn up. There was a rumour that one turned up in New Zealand in 2012 but that turned out to be a fabrication.

Back to Australian Ethical’s decision. If it is a good idea to decarbonise its portfolio for investment reasons, as claimed in the news piece, then why not do it now? Why wait until 2050 to complete the task? Alternatively, if the firm invests partly (or mainly) for ethical reasons and ‘carbon’ is deemed unethical, why wait any time at all? If the firm is philosophically against investment in ‘carbon’ then which particular ethics are allowed to be sacrificed to leave ‘carbon’ in the portfolio now? What does decarbonise the portfolio actually mean?  What power source is being used to turn on the lights in the office and power up the website that portrays the superior ethics of the firm principals, complete with a photo of wind mill generators? It’s all very confusing.

I must remember to put a calendar reminder in my diary for a date in 2050 to check in to Australian Ethical’s investment portfolio and check out how it all went. Assuming I’m still around, that is.