Got lots of money? Then make it work for good, and switch it from conventional portfolios to something better. There is always risk in investing, but there appears to be no more risk in ethical investing. In fact, companies that have long-term green outlooks tend to do better in the long term. Use a reputable investment company.
Ethical investing uses a screening process. It refuses to invest in nasty stuff! So green investments won’t use your money to fund arms, animal testing, environmental or human rights abuses, tobacco, alcohol, gambling or pornography.
Simple Green Savings Accounts
- Charity Bank offers simple savings accounts, with profits helping local community projects. The application form is very short, and you can be helping through your savings, in no time. It’s like a cross of a charity with a bank.
- Forester Friendly Society is a building society owned by its members. You get lots of membership goodies, because there are no shareholders: examples are healthcare grants, educational grants and financial help for children.
- Ecology Building Society offers a range of savings accounts, for ethical investors. Your money is used to offer C-Change mortgages to people buying eco-homes (or doing up old wrecks) and other environmentally projects, like green building.
- Shared Interest pools money from ethical investors, to help small Fair Trade projects in developing countries. You can take money out at any time, and pool money with others.
Greener Options for Serious Investors
- Invest Like You Give a Damn is a book by a successful American investor. He breaks down what ethical investing is, and shows you how to swap, without hurting your financial portfolio. The book includes engaging investor stories and an asset allocation tool.
- Locavesting is a book about a new kind of investment. Why do so many investors only fund companies far away? This book looks at how successful local investors can help both their community and their bank balance. The book Raising Dough shows how to invest in local food businesses, and includes case studies.
- Ethical Investors is based in leafy Cheltenham and gives at least 50% of its profits to its own trust, which helps the planet and animal welfare. You can contact them for expert advice, on how to rid your portfolio of nasty.
- Triodos is Europe’s largest ethical bank, and offers a special service for investors (there is a branch in Bristol, answered by real people, not machines). It mostly invests in social enterprises, green energy and organic farming.