“E” vs “SG” in ethical investing: how sustainable is mollification-by-cherrypicking

Apr 11 10:04 2020 Print This Article

In the great game of whack-a-mole that is capital raising in Canada’s oil patch, it must be frustrating, for those whose full-time job when there isn’t a global pandemic is whacking the moles of ESG criteria on which they feel their companies may be vulnerable to criticism and hence subject to divestment, that some moles require harder and more whacks than others. It’s bad enough that they have to play the game in the first place.

As a pro-nuke, I sympathize. I play whack-a-mole too, also in response to a litany of similarly ever-shuffling and cherry-picked criteria trotted out by pretty much the same exact crowd. Do I sometimes suspect that the trotters-out are not themselves all that personally worked up about whichever criterion they happen to find opportune to wave in my face? I don’t just suspect it, I know it.

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About Article Author

Canadian Energy Issues

Steve Aplin, author of Canadian Energy Issues, is the Vice President of Energy and Environment at the HDP Group Inc., an Ottawa-based management consultancy. He leads energy- and environment-related projects dealing with current and future energy production and use at the macro and micro levels. In addition to the technical, technological, and organizational aspects, all of these projects involve also a political dimension, which often necessitates advocacy at various levels of government as well as in the general public arena.

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