Tuesday, December 2, 2014

UC Divesting from Fossil Fuel

By Alden Phinney

Fossil Free UC (FFUC) is a student and stakeholder campaign to divest the UC from fossil fuels. In accordance with international efforts to arrest climate change, FFUC advocates that the UC freeze and drop investments in the top 200 fossil fuel companies ranked by largest carbon reserves, and reinvest that money towards sustainable and just climate solutions.

If we intend to secure a habitable world for future generations, the "burn it all" business plans of energy corporations must not come to fruition. However, these companies' lobbying and influence are some of the leading obstacles to the enactment of restrictive legislation and a just transition to a low-carbon society. Fossil Free UC seeks to advance the clean energy economy by stigmatizing association with fossil fuel companies and reinvesting capital towards a just transition away from dirty energy.

FFUC is now concentrating on building campus and coalition power across the state, as well as advocating within the UC system to ensure the Environmental Social Governance investing framework is more bite than hype. They are working with Academic Senates to craft resolutions endorsing divestment from fossil fuels and start the conversation among pensioners regarding what their investments are supporting. Get involved by signing a petition at http://www.fossilfreeuc.org/petition (or faculty open letter if applicable), liking them on Facebook, or coming to Fossil Free UC's meetings on Fridays at 3:30 in the International Living Center apartment 5204! If you have any questions, comments, or want to get involved, don't hesitate to email aphinney [at] ucsc [dot] edu.

Alden Phinney is the Sustainability Office Climate Action Analyst through the Chancellor's Undergraduate Internship Program; a member of the Campus Sustainability Council; and a coordinator for Fossil Free UC Santa Cruz.

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