Dutch Pension Fund ABP to Divest from Fossil Fuel, A Greener Festival, Grow Ahead, Drive Electric Campaign

by | Nov 2, 2021 | Podcasts, The Climate Daily

Dutch pension fund, ABP, about-faces and WILL divest from fossil fuel by 2030, plus going to A Greener Festival. It’s time to Grow Ahead, and getting with the Drive Electric Campaign.



Yesterday, we talked about Fidelity International’s fossil fuel divestment moves. Today we’re going to raise up the largest pension fund in the Netherlands. Called ABP, it’s a fund valued at 509 billion euros (almost $600B USD). Just last June, ABP said “directly exiting” fossil fuel investments is not the solution to environmental concerns.

Guess what? On the eve of COP26, ABP announced it will in fact, directly exit fossil fuel. This is did an impressive about face. In fact, it committed to divesting 15 billion euros ($18 billion) of investments in fossil fuel producers by 2023.

So what made them change their minds?

“The earth is projected to heat up by 1.5 degrees already within seven years. That means a radical change is needed and that is partly the reason why we are now announcing this change of course,” ABP Chairman Corien Wortmann said.

She went on to say ABP believes the current situation shows that if the pension fund were to maintain the course, there is insufficient opportunity for ABP as a shareholder to push for the necessary significant acceleration of the energy transition at these companies.

The fund would focus using its influence as a shareholder to encourage companies that use fossil fuels to become more sustainable.

DEEPER DIVE: Reuters, Bloomberg Green, Yahoo! Finance



Last week we reported on EarthPercent and the Climate Control Projects announcing SOS: Concert for the Planet to take place in 2022. We also reported on Brian Eno establishing EarthPercent to give musicians and artists an outlet for donating proceeds from their concerts and record sales to science-based projects combating the worst effects of climate change.

Well guess who’s been making live gigs greener since 2005? A Greener Festival, that’s who.

A Greener Festival is a not-for-profit company, committed to helping events, festivals and venues around the world to become more sustainable and reduce environmental impacts. According to their website, AGF are pioneers in event sustainability and have been providing certification, training, expertise, and facilitating the exchange of best practices since 2005.

Early on A Greener Festival figured out it’s not enough to show venue owners, live performers and event managers that it’s not just the right thing to do to be eco-friendly, it’s also possible. They saw exploiting the competitive spirit in human nature as a means to a greener end.

That’s why in 2007, AGF established the Greener Festival Award. In the past 14 years, AGF has assessed nearly 500 events across 5 continents, from daily capacities as small as 500 up to as large as 200,000.

That’s all well and good, but why does A Greener Festival matter to us festival goers? Well, they created something called The Green Artist Rider. A rider is an attachment, schedule, amendment, or other writing that is annexed (added) to a document in order to modify it. 

The Green Artist Rider aims to assist artists and encourage stronger collaboration between promoters and venues. What it does is legally bind all stakeholders in live music events and tours to:

  •   Reduce single-use plastics

Reduce and balance emissions

  •   Source food with low environmental impact and high social benefit and
  •   Eliminate waste

That’s why. And that’s pretty forward thinking. Dontcha think?




Rural communities are the first to feel the effects of climate change despite having disproportionately low carbon footprints. Working with these communities for climate resiliency initiatives is essential so they can protect the land and provide for their families. Grow Ahead is an organization that promotes crowdfunding to support the development of climate resilience in rural communities.

Grow Ahead specifically, promotes Agroforestry. Agroforestry is a way of planting crops and trees together to improve social, economic, and environmental benefits. Agroforestry “systems” help farmers restore water and nutrients to their soil, increase the production of food, and pull carbon out of the atmosphere.

GA team up with community organizations around the world to support projects that improve the environment and community livelihoods. They do that through campaigns and business partnerships. Their campaigns raise money for projects that are completely designed, implemented, and managed by community cooperatives. Two such examples include an Agroforestry and Cocoa project in Ghana. Also a women-led reforestation project in Brazil.

Bena Burda, of Maggie’s Organics/Clean Clothes, said, “Maggie’s is proud to partner with Grow Ahead and support their effort to scale-out regenerative agriculture in farming communities around the world. We are excited to be connecting the important on-the-ground work of Grow Ahead to our customer base. This is a way for them to resonate with the work being done, instead of simply feeling helpless and depressed about the effects of climate change.”

Grow Ahead is on a mission to plant 1 million trees in partnership with small-scale farmers.




Imagine a world where nobody breathes unhealthy vehicle exhaust — where electric vehicles of all types provide mobility for people and goods, while delivering cleaner air to breathe, [pause] more affordable transportation, more jobs, and a safer climate. That’s the vision of The Drive Electric Campaign.

This group has got audacious goals including:

By 2030: 100% sales of new buses, two- and three-wheelers will be EV . By 2035: 100% sales of new cars and light trucks, including pick-ups, SUVs, light vans will be EV and. By 2040: 100% sales of new commercial medium- and heavy-duty freight trucks will all be electric. How, and why does their strategy matter to us? 

The campaign  focuses on securing smart government policies, boosting business leadership and action, and supporting people-powered organizations and coalitions working to accelerate the transition to 100% zero-emission electric transportation.

When it comes to business, Drive Electric Campaign focuses on engaging with leading companies to electrify their vehicle fleets and support their employees and customers to adopt EVs. It’s a proven strategy. When market leaders shift, their size and momentum create the scale of demand required to establish EV market scale to make EV’s affordable for all.

Furthermore, Drive Electric’s global campaign focuses on four key markets — China, India, Europe, and the U.S. — where we have significant partner capacity and a growing number of government and business leaders willing to take action.

DEEPER DIVE: DriveElectricCampaign