Advocates for Fossil Fuel Divestment Push Treasury for Changes

House Bill 2601 is generating a lot of heat in Salem.

Nigel Jaquiss February 22, 2023 Willamette Week

Bill of the Week: House Bill 2601

Divestment from companies that invest in fossil fuels is an enormous issue for pension funds across the country—and in Salem.

In simple terms, advocates want pension fund managers hired by the Oregon State Treasury to pull pension investments out of companies such as ExxonMobil, Chevron, BP and thousands of smaller companies, both publicly traded and private, that invest in oil, gas and coal and to reinvest the money elsewhere. Divestment as a tool for change goes back to at least the mid-1980s, when U.S. pension funds dumped South African stocks, a tactic historians credit for contributing to the end of apartheid. Since then, activists have pushed fund managers to shun tobacco stocks, arms makers, coal producers, and investments in Iran and Sudan.


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