Dorian Fulvio was nearing retirement after nearly 20 years in the New York City comptroller’s office when she started thinking seriously about her pension. Though she appreciated the security it promised, its fossil fuel investments bothered her: Fulvio didn’t want to profit from an industry that contributes so heavily to climate change. “I started to panic about this,” she says.
So after retiring in 2016, the former IT professional joined her local chapter of 350.org. The organization, founded eight years before by environmentalist Bill McKibben, was at the time on the vanguard of a growing divestment campaign aimed at Big Oil. Energized, Fulvio joined its effort to pressure the city into banishing that polluting business from its investment portfolios. (Editor’s note: McKibben is a member of the Grist board.)
This hard work paid off in January, when city Comptroller Scott Stringer’s office announced that it had begun removing $4 billion in fossil fuel assets from three pension funds. New York is the first major city in the United States to make such a move, which is expected to take two years to complete. It plans to instead double, to more than $6 billion... Read more