Perusing the internet over the past couple years I have encountered a handful of bloggers and podcasters who are making the connection between sustainable living (sustainability) and financial independence (FI). I find it heartening to find their websites , which reveal there are others out there blending their social and environmental concerns into their pursuit of financial independence. I thought it could be helpful to start by sharing my assessment of the internet landscape and then getting your feedback about what I missed.
I want to be very clear before continuing this post that I am NOT judging anyone who is not incorporating this Rich & Resilient Living way of thinking into their pursuit of FI. I recognize that most people en-route to FI are already reducing their environmental impact simply by consuming less. Others have mentioned their plans to donate a portion of the wealth they accumulate through index funds and other more conventional investments to charities and non-profits that negate some of the environmental and societal challenges we face. That’s all wonderful! And for many that will be enough.
While it is my impression that all of the people listed below (with the possible exceptions of Vicki Robin, Mike Hoag, and Jenny Nazak) hold small to large portions of their wealth in index funds, some socially responsible funds and some not (to be clear I still have some $$ in these funds as well, but I am working to transition those few remaining investments), they have also consistently expressed concern about the environment or social issues through their online platforms.
A List of Blogs Making the Connection Between Sustainable Living & Financial Independence
1) Vicki Robin, co-author of the seminal FI book Your Money or Your Life, has long been championing the environment, social justice, and community building. These days she’s blogging about all of it at VickiRobin.com. She’s also sharing her treasure trove of wisdom, compassion, and thoughtful analysis on Facebook if you want to follow her there as well. She generously authored this guest post right here on my website.
2) The blog post I have found that most overtly expresses this triple bottom line investing conundrum in the FI community was penned by Kristine at Frugasaurus.com. The young couple behind this blog live in Norway and aspire to a frugal, sustainable lifestyle. In a November 2017 blog post, she pondered whether an environmentally conscious person on the FI path could feel comfortable achieving FI through index fund investing. I think that the message of their blog is very closely aligned with mine. Given we reside in different countries though, some of the investment vehicles and other options available to us differ. While the website lives on, Kristine has now stopped posting new content there.
3) Luckily, for us Kristine from Frugasaurus is collaborating with Angela Rozmyn on a new website Ecofrugals, where they promote all things sustainable and frugal. Kristine recently started taking a deeper dive into permaculture so I look forward to seeing how that gets reflected in future posts on their site.
4) Angela also maintains her own site at Tread Lightly, Retire Early, where she shares her efforts to become FI and have a lighter impact on our planet.
5) Mr. Money Mustache uses his tremendous popularity and reach to indirectly encourage readers to reduce their environmental impact by making the economic case for doing things such as riding a bicycle, purchasing an electric vehicle, and installing solar panels.
6) Jakob Lund Fisker from Early Retirement Extreme is no longer producing new content, but he continues to republish his older blog posts all of which are infused with a low-consumption sustainability ethos.
7) It was reading Tanja Hester’s post Triple Bottom Line // Balancing Frugality With Our Values over at Our Next Life that prompted me to initially name this blog Triple Bottom Line FI. These days Tanja’s hard at work on her forthcoming book Spend Like You Give a $h*t: A New Framework for Transforming the Planet and Its People.
8) Liz from Frugalwoods chronicles her family’s move to a homestead in Vermont underscoring how the family’s frugal ways support their environmental ethos.
9) The man behind Freedom 33 uses the tagline invest money / spend time/ save world. He wrote a blog post entitled Build a Sustainable Life. Additionally, the site makes it look like he intends to pen a series on things we waste.
10) A newer entry into this space is Saving Our Green. This young married couple is chronicling their conscious money efforts in pursuit of financial independence.
11) I met Michelle from Frugality & Freedom just over one year ago when I spoke at Camp Mustache and we continue to connect and collaborate around FI and sustainable living. Michelle is interested in permaculture and taking advantage of many online learning opportunities to increase her knowledge in this space. Expect to see more and more sustainability focused content on this Australian-based FI blogger’s website in the future.
12) Hadassah Damien is the force behind Ride Free Fearless Money and while she may not be sharing gardening tips with her audience, she educates them around divesting from fossil fuels and better aligning their money with their values. She’s a creative, progressive, free-spirit and a welcome voice in this realm.
13) Cleona Lira is a financial advisor based in the U.K., who specializes in investing in socially responsible mutual funds . She also works with clients to improve their financial literacy and relationship with money. She’s recently started delving into permaculture as well and has become quite an enthusiast.
14) My friend and fellow Floridian Jenny Nazak blogs about ultra low footprint living at Deep Green and she’s written a book by the same name. She has chosen to live without a car in a not so public transportation friendly town. She also manages to not turn on the a/c in our hot Florida summers. I find her lifestyle and musings very inspirational. We are definitely kindred spirits.
Ana started blogging at Goat Dog Simple last summer. On her website she writes about financial independence and simple living. Not surprisingly most of her simple living suggestions are more sustainable as well.
15) Catherine from Sisters for FI and The Do Something Project has interspersed both sites with articles discussing environmentally and socially responsible personal finance including this guest post by me.
13) This last person does not blog about financial independence regularly, but he produced some of my favorite content linking money and permaculture. Start with this piece by Mike Hoag of Lillie House and then move onto this article by him as well. You can read more about my thoughts on his musings in this first post of my Permaculture FI series.
A Gathering Place for Socially Conscious People on the Path to Financial Independence
If you feel isolated in your pursuit of a greener and more socially responsible version of financial independence consider joining the Socially Conscious Mustachians Facebook group. It can feel like a breath of fresh air to interact with the like-minded people in this space.
Who Else is Blogging at the Intersection of Sustainability and Financial Independence?
What other content is there online that holds an environmentally and socially conscious lens to the pursuit of FI? Let me know what I overlooked in the comments section below……