It’s wrong to profit from wrecking the climate. And it’s wrong for our colleges to invest in the fossil fuel corporations that threaten to destroy our future. That’s the simple ethic that is driving a powerful campaign taking hold on campuses across our region and the country: fossil fuel divestment.
What is fossil fuel divestment?
Divestment simply means getting rid of stocks, bonds or investment funds that are unethical or morally ambiguous. Fossil Fuel investments are a risk for investors and the planet — that’s why we’re calling on institutions to divest from these companies. More than 300 campuses across the country are actively campaigning to divest their college endowments from some of the dirtiest, most profitable fossil fuel companies.
Why does divestment matter?
Fossil fuel divestment is a moral and political strategy for winning back our future. It’s also a proven tactic. In the 1980’s, the South African divestment campaign helped break the back of the Apartheid government. When prominent institutions divest their money from fossil fuel companies, they make a strong moral statement about the need for action on climate change and help diminish the political power of the fossil fuel industry. Divestment also sends a long-term economic signal to the shareholders of coal, oil and gas companies — that their business model is fundamentally incompatible with the livable future we deserve and demand.
What’s the solution?
Students are calling on their universities to instead invest their endowments in a manner that is environmentally and socially responsible — like in the clean energy solutions that will protect our climate.
Go Fossil Free campaigns on Maryland, DC and Virginia campuses
Divestment campaigns are launching all over the Mid-Atlantic. We are excited to support active campaigns, help launch new ones, and connect students to each other to further their resources and power. Divestment campaigns are active on the following campuses in our region. Check out their pages and petitions:
- Virginia Tech
- Eastern Mennonite University
- James Madison University
- University The College of William & Mary
- Johns Hopkins University
- University of Maryland
- University of Mary Washington
- University of Virginia
- Virginia Commonwealth University
- Fact Sheet: What is fossil fuel divestment?
- Fossil Free: A Campus Guide to Divestment
- Go Fossil Free – Frequently Asked Questions
- Recruitment Toolkit
- Sample petitions and letters
- What about divesting my own money?
Want to start a divestment campaign on your campus? We can help!
Contact Denise Robbins at firstname.lastname@example.org.