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The Dirty Investments of Major Environmental Organizations

This will be a real rush job and in fact I originally had another quick rant in mind, but I noticed an article last night that should probably be read and taken into consideration by more people. Not that the matter of certain major environmental organizations having certain financial interests that, on closer inspection, don’t quite seem consistent with their stated goals is unknown, of course, but it needs to be better understood and put in the proper perspective.
One obvious danger is to blow it out of proportion and consider that all such cases prove that those organizations are in fact merely taking advantage of the increasing support enjoyed by environmentalism in order to reach certain nefarious goals that obviously have nothing to do with it. There are plenty of conspiracy theorists that have long accused some of these organizations, and I remember The Nature Conservancy, WWF and I believe also Oceana being specifically mentioned in various such rants, so there’s definitely too much of that going around to add to it even more, but at the same time giving them the full benefit of the doubt and ignoring the matter entirely, as plenty of environmentalists seem to do, is a major problem in itself.
The fact of the matter is that, considering how the world currently works and the fact that they can’t afford to wait for us to fix society before doing something for the environment, these organizations need money to operate, and the major ones need quite a lot of it. As such, on top of donations, they will try to fund themselves to some extent, which means that they will be investing and looking to earn a good profit in order to continue to do their job. Under these circumstances, while it’d obviously be ideal if such organizations would have no dealings with the corporations that harm the environment, the question becomes who profits more as a result of such investments, because there may well be cases when such a move will improve their chances to do good significantly more than it’ll improve the dirty corporation’s chances to harm.
Still, the article in question reveals a worse problem than the fact that the investments exist, and that’s the lack of transparency turning into highly suspicious secrecy when it’s specified that certain organizations have also refused to answer when specifically asked about their investments. If any independent group or organization is to be able to analyze whether the environment, the organizations or the corporations in question benefit the most as a result of such investments, then all the relevant information needs to be public all the time and the organizations in question must also be completely willing to answer any specific questions that may be asked of them as a result. Of course, it would help if they’d know that they won’t be seen as traitors of the cause for the very existence of these dealings, irrelevant of the findings of any independent analysis, but once they decide to take such a course of action, that’s a risk they’ll have to take, because when they also try to keep it a secret then it’s obvious that something’s wrong.


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