‘Greening’ your finances is easier than you think

Small effort, MAJOR impact.

By
Katie Overmonds
on
May 13, 2022
Category:
Smart Home
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If you're anything like me, you try to make savvy decisions that are good for your family, your community and our planet. 

Maybe you walk or ride your bike instead of taking the car for short errands. Maybe you think of creative ways to save energy in your home to keep your bills and your eco-footprint low. Maybe you have a favorite Meatless Monday recipe. 

One area you may not have considered? The eco-impact of your bank account. Turns out, the money sitting in your savings accounts could actually be funding the very industries doing the most to harm our planet! 

35 of the world's major banks – many of them household names – have provided $2.7 trillion to fossil fuel companies since the Paris Agreement on climate change was adopted at the end of 2015, according to a 2020 report from Rainforest Action Network and five other non-profits. They found this fossil fuel financing had actually grown each year since the Paris agreement.

For those of you who this was NOT a surprise, it’s possible that even with that knowledge, the thought of how to ‘fix’ this problem is simply too daunting. 

For me, it went something like this: 

Me, to my current bank’s financial planner when talking about how I should save for my future: “I’m concerned about the environmental impact of my investments. Do you have any options for ways I can ensure my money is going towards sustainable projects?” 

My bank’s financial planner: “Ummm … not really. Maybe? I’m not sure though – you’d have to look into it.” 

FAR from inspiring or helpful to a customer whose financial knowledge is limited. (That’s me!) 

The good thing? I’m not alone and the number of people looking for ways to ‘green’ their finances is only growing. 

I spoke to a friend who works as a sustainability consultant and financial advisor and she shared that my goal is actually easier than I thought. 

‘Greening’ your finances is easier than you may think. Here’s how to get started: 

1. Understand your carbon impact. Tools like Fossil Free Funds help you look up the carbon impact of your mutual fund and Decarbonizer helps you see how your portfolio would perform historically if you removed some of the dirtiest polluters.

2. Learn about impact investing options and take action.  Open Impact is a catalog of impact investing products.

3. Seek help from a Responsible Investment (RI) Certified Advisor or sustainability consultants to provide trustworthy, credible advice on how to divest.  

4. Check out Atmos Financial - the first high-performance checking and savings accounts engineered to reverse the climate crisis. OhmConnect members that sign up for Atmos will get $20 in their Atmos account, just for getting started! 

Meet Atmos Financial - Green banking services for climate-friendly checking and sustainable savings accounts

OhmConnect is partnering with Atmos Financial on our shared mission of fighting the climate crisis, and it pays to hop on board. 

When you deposit your money with Atmos, they pledge that those deposits will be used exclusively to fund climate-positive infrastructure and accelerate our transition to a clean, fair and transformed economy. That means things like renewable energy, energy efficiency overhauls, electric transportation, green construction, and regenerative agriculture.

A nice perk? OhmConnect members who sign up for Atmos Financial will get $20 cash in their Atmos account! 

Katie Overmonds

Katie is an award-winning journalist and digital strategist with more than 10 years of experience in print and digital media and a passion for the environment and fighting climate change.

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