While the most damaging impact of fossil fuels is their combustion and the subsequent creation of carbon emissions, the extraction processes for coal and petroleum also cause considerable damage to the environment: destruction of habitats, removal of local vegetation and vegetative cover, pollution of ground- or surface-water, excessive waste from purification processes, acid rain, oil spills, and more. The earth’s reserves of fossil fuels are limited, but it is hard to say when those limits will be reached.
Fossil Free Indexes produces the Carbon Underground 200, which ranks the top oil, gas, and coal companies by the potential CO2 emissions of their reported reserves. If you select this screen, OpenInvest divests you from the companies with the highest emissions potential and keeps you in the companies with the lowest emissions potential. Divesting from all fossil fuel companies would affect diversification, but may be available upon request.