Divestment from fossil fuels: An ethical imperative for higher education


On Nov. 5, 2012, the Unity College Board of Trustees voted unanimously to divest our $15 million endowment from the top 200 fossil fuel companies, making Unity the world’s first institution of higher learning to explicitly target – using Carbon Tracker, a financial think tank – companies that produce these carbon-based fuels. Since our action, hundreds of campuses have started divestment movements. An increasing number, including Pitzer, Stanford and Syracuse, have voted to divest billions from fossil fuels. Continue reading “Divestment from fossil fuels: An ethical imperative for higher education”

An open letter to college and university presidents

Originally published 13 November 2012.  As relevant today as it was then.  Your questions are welcome.

Stephen Mulkey

Dear Colleagues,

On the 5th of November 2012, the Unity College Board of Trustees  voted unanimously to divest our endowment from fossil fuel industries.  While one might think that this was logical for a college where Sustainability Science structures the academic program, it was not easy.   Naturally, the Board’s committee on investment carefully reviewed the potential fiduciary impact of this action.  Some members of the Board were uncomfortable with the choice to close off this source of revenue at a time when the College needs every penny.  In the end, the Board embraced our ethical obligation to stop supporting an industry that has repeatedly demonstrated a lack of commitment to future generations.  I write this letter to urge you to raise this crucially important issue with your governing body. Continue reading “An open letter to college and university presidents”