Boulder County To Screen Insurance Companies for Fossil Fuel Involvement

On Thursday, Boulder County Commissioners passed a resolution making the county the first in the country to call upon insurance companies to stop insuring and investing in fossil fuels.

According to a press release from Boulder County, the county is specifically “seeking to avoid indirectly funding carbon-intensive, fossil fuel infrastructure projects by carefully considering the types of investments held by companies that insure Boulder County assets.”

Listen to the report here:

Boulder County Commissioner Elise Jones told KGNU that today’s resolution is historic.

Commissioners Deb Gardner (Left), Elise Jones (Middle) and Matt Jones (Right)

“Insurance companies are really the next frontier in terms of divestment from fossil fuels and Boulder County is one of the first jurisdictions to take a stand saying we are not interested in investing in companies who are investing in fossil fuels given the direct costs that we’re paying for the climate change crisis, the cost in terms of financial outlays for extreme weather events similar to the 2013 floods that we’re still paying for.”

~ Read the full proclamation here ~

Today’s resolution comes the day after attorneys representing Boulder and San Miguel County officials in a climate change lawsuit, filed arguments in Boulder District Court saying the suit should not be dismissed.

The lawsuit names Suncor Energy, Suncor Energy Sales, Suncor Energy and the Exxon Mobil Corp. as defendants and seeks compensation for climate change-induced damages such as fires, floods and drought. It also seeks compensation for the costs of mitigating such events.

The defendants had asked the case to be heard in U.S. District Court and not in a Boulder District Court. However, last September a court ruled in favor of the plaintiffs and moved the case back to the county. The defendants appealed that decision to the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals.