In an article in the UK newspaper The Guardian, Archbishop Emeritus of Cape Town, South Africa, and Nobel peace laureate Desmond Tutu is calling for “an apartheid-style boycott to save the planet”.
Tutu makes the following points, among many others:
- We must stop climate change. And we can, if we use the tactics that worked in South Africa against the worst carbon emitters.
- Twenty-five years ago people could be excused for not knowing much, or doing much, about climate change. Today we have no excuse. No more can it be dismissed as science fiction; we are already feeling the effects.
- It is appalling that the US is debating whether to approve a massive pipeline transporting 830,000 barrels of the world’s dirtiest oil from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico.
- The pipeline will affect the whole world, our shared world, the only world we have. We don’t have much time.
- [Our] responsibility that begins with God commanding the first human inhabitants of the garden of Eden “to till it and keep it”. To keep it; not to abuse it, not to destroy it.
- During the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa, using boycotts, divestment and sanctions, and supported by our friends overseas, we were not only able to apply economic pressure on the unjust state, but also serious moral pressure.
- Those countries and companies primarily responsible for emitting carbon and accelerating climate change are not simply going to give up; they stand to make too much money. They need a whole lot of gentle persuasion from the likes of us.
- People of conscience need to break their ties with corporations financing the injustice of climate change.
- We cannot necessarily bankrupt the fossil fuel industry. But we can take steps to reduce its political clout, and hold those who rake in the profits accountable for cleaning up the mess.
- It makes no sense to invest in companies that undermine our future. To serve as custodians of creation is not an empty title; it requires that we act, and with all the urgency this dire situation demands.
The complete article is available at http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/apr/10/divest-fossil-fuels-climate-change-keystone-xl