Frederique Seidel, WCC senior advisor on child rights, noted that there are 425 new fossil fuel expansion projects—"carbon bombs”—threatening to completely undo progress around curbing harmful emissions.
But investors can change this trajectory, she urged.
“Although CO2 emissions currently continue going up for now, there is hope, because of the still largely untapped, and most powerful lever of climate-responsible banking,” she said. "Fiduciary duty is not an obstacle but a reason to accelerate shift to renewable energy.”
Seidel noted that fossil-free investments are consistent with fiduciary duty and child rights.
“You as Investors play a key role in the climate-responsible interpretation of fiduciary duty,” she said. “In fact many investors are victims of the disinformation on global warming and the orchestrated climate change denial.”
She shared examples of related ongoing litigation. "Human rights experts from the United Nations have issued a warning to Saudi Aramco and its banks over the company’s responsibility in the climate emergency, after ClientEarth filed a legal complaint accusing Aramco of committing the largest ever climate-related breach of human rights law by a business,” she explained.
It’s time to rethink climate-responsible investing, Seidel said, and stop using past models.
“Capitalising on the opportunities of the energy transition, while protecting investor capital and the climate, demands a new direction,” she said.