The University of California’s decision to sell off its coal-mining and oil-sands investments comes at a time that, in the future, will be understood as pivotal for climate policy in California, in the United States and at the United Nations’ upcoming climate meetings in Paris.
So writes Jagdeep Singh Bachher, chief investment officer of the UC regents, in an op-ed in the San Francisco Chronicle this week, as news of the sell-off made headlines nationwide.
“As a global leader in sustainability research and practice, the University of California has been wary of coal-mining and oil-sands investments for a while,” he writes. “Our sell-off of the small holdings in our active portfolio acknowledges the growing regulatory and market risks associated with these businesses.”
Bachher places the sell-off in the broader context of UC’s integration of sustainability into its investment strategy and its commitment of $1 billion to finding solutions to climate change. Blanket divestment, he says, isn’t the answer.