Divestment of Fossil Fuels Hurts Canadians

Divestment of Fossil Fuels Hurts Canadians

Is fossil fuel divestment in Canada actually helping our current plight? Not at all. In fact, it’s hurting Canadian families and Canadian revenues, while failing to keep one barrel of oil in the ground.

The unintended consequences of fossil fuel divestment in Canada should be a cause for concern for everybody. When Canada doesn’t produce and supply the energy the world needs because of fossil fuel divestment, that energy is then produced elsewhere – often in a country with less transparency and protections for human rights.

Divestment Won't Keep Oil in the Ground

Consider the fact that Norges Bank recently excluded several oil sands companies from its Government Pension Fund Global Investment Portfolio, while it maintained tens of billions of dollars invested in other oil and gas producing nations like China, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, Bahrain and the UAE.

HSBC also said it would stop providing funding for oil sands back in 2018. After divestment from Canada, HSBC shifted its focus to Saudi Arabia, becoming a majority shareholder. Saudi Arabia pales in comparison to Canada on social and governance indices.

What was the result of all these divestment decisions?

> Fewer jobs for Canadians across the country who rely on the sector to provide for themselves and their families

> Fewer government revenues that could be used to pay for things like clean technology, schools, hospitals and public infrastructure / social programs plus the jobs that staff them

> Fewer opportunities for rural workers, especially Indigenous communities who have more people working in the natural resource sector on average than other sector in Canada

> More oil and gas revenues diverted from Canadians to countries with repressive regimes and inferior rankings for social progress

> More market share diverted from Canada to producers with little to no transparency

Divestment Offers No Balance or Compromiseoil and gas companies divesting from Canada

Apart from hurting Canadian families, communities and public programming, divestment sees economics as “black and white.”

Oil and gas will remain a majority supplier to the world’s energy mix for decades to come - regardless of any projection models you wish to consider - and countless billions of investment will be needed to supply that future world demand.

The lack of balance and compromise in this conversation risks driving away investments. This means less jobs for Canadians, and less revenues for our governments, full stop.

Divesting from fossil fuel production in Canada has several unintended consequences that should catch the attention of anyone who wants to champion transparency and human rights.

Canada should be a supplier of choice for as long as the world requires oil and gas. We invite you to join us and stand up against the divestment movement which only benefits foreign oil producers and injures Canadians from every region and walk of life.

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