People & Planet
If it is wrong to wreck the climate, then it is wrong to profit from that wreckage.
UK universities support the fossil fuel industry directly - through the £5.2bn worth of their endowments invested in fossil fuel companies - and indirectly through their research and their partnerships with some of the biggest companies in the world, like BP and Shell.
Students have decided to take on the fossil fuel industry by getting our universities to go Fossil Free. People & Planet -- Britain's largest student activist network -- has joined forces with 350.org to bring the fossil fuel divestment campaign to UK institutions.
We believe that our educational institutions should serve the public good and live up to their promises to tackle climate change. No UK university in their right mind accepts funding from or invest their funds in tobacco companies these days -- it’s inconsistent with their research on cancer and health. Investing in the fossil fuel companies causing climate change is a bad investment, and yet most universities still do not recognise this. That’s about to change!
Creating a Fossil Free petition
To get your whole university (or other institution) talking about your campaign, create your own online petition. You’ll have full control over the wording and design of your petition. This petition allows you to share it easily on social media and build your contacts list - you can email the people who’ve signed to keep them updated about your campaign progress and events.
NB: Students! If you need advice in designing your campaign and petition text, contact People & Planet on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01865 264180
Get started, click "New Campaign" below:
New Campaign Campaigns
Divest Aberystwyth University from fossil fuelsUK students have decided to take on the fossil fuel industry by getting our universities to go Fossil Free. People & Planet is joining forces with the 350.org campaign that has been sweeping across North American campuses. We believe that our educational institutions should serve the public good and live up to their promises to tackle climate change. No UK university in their right mind would accept funding from or invest their funds in tobacco companies these days - it’s inconsistent with their research on cancer. The same holds true for fossil fuel companies causing climate change and yet most universities still do not recognise this. That’s about to change! From Canada’s dirty tar sands to Arctic drilling and hydraulic fracturing (or fracking) for shale gas - the fossil fuel industry is scraping the bottom of the barrel and causing huge environmental and human devastation in the process. Withdrawing our institutions’ financial and moral backing for this climate-wrecking industry is crucial to tackling climate change.68 of 100 SignaturesCreated by James Pickerin
Swansea University: Divest from Fossil Fuels!The world in which the students of Swansea University are to graduate into is currently threatened by the reality of climate change. Already the world is suffering the effects of 1°C rise in global average temperatures. Last year, Arctic sea-ice cover had retreated to its lowest levels since the beginning of satellite records, and the average global sea level was 1.4in above the 1993-2010 average. The world is experiencing more severe draught, wildfires and flooding, which impact the world's poorest most severely; the World Health Organisation estimates that climate change is causing at least 140,000 deaths per year. The fossil fuel industry is unequivocally driving us towards a global climate crisis, and we will not keep dangerous climate change at bay without halting our extraction of fossil-fuels. The university has both a moral and a financial duty to its students to withdraw its investments from the fossil fuel industry. The moral case is clear: if it is wrong to wreck the climate, then it is wrong to profit from that wreckage. Furthermore, fossil fuels are a dangerous investment. The value of companies like Shell, BP and Chevron is based on the assumption that they will be able to dig up and sell their fossil fuel reserves. But if the world gets serious about stopping climate change, that would mean keeping 80% of proven fossil fuel reserves in the ground, and the assumption that forms the basis for these companies' value will be undermined. We call on Swansea University to lead the way on this issue, and protect the future of its students by divesting from the fossil fuel industry now.757 of 800 SignaturesCreated by Swansea People and Planet
Make Cardiff University Divest From Fossil Fuels!From a Freedom of Information request, we learned that Cardiff University currently invests around two million pounds of its total endowment funds in the Fossil Fuel industry (Shell, BG Group, BHP Billiton etc). Divesting from this industry will withdraw moral support from the Fossil Fuel industry and show Cardiff University's support for a more sustainable future. Cardiff University has already divested from the Arms and Tobacco industry, and it has a number of world leading researchers working in sustainability. The Fossil Fuel industry has a disproportionate influence on government policy and independent institutions like universities through lobbying and funding. As Climate Change has been verified by 97% of climate scientists, (according to a recent IPCC report) it is essential to begin cutting political and economic ties with this industry, so that the democratic process has a chance to avert the catastrophe which we are heading towards. We are not powerless in the struggle to protect our planet from uncontrollable climate chaos, and we can use divestment as a way to send a strong political message through our institutions- including Cardiff University.1,257 of 2,000 SignaturesCreated by Jack Pickering
Divest the University of Bath from the Fossil Fuel IndustryThe world has committed to keeping global warming below 2 degrees. To achieve this, over 80% of the proven fossil fuel reserves will have to stay in the ground (1) - we simply cannot afford to continue to invest in this industry. However, the arguments against fossil fuel investments are not just environmental. Economically, it is clearly unsustainable to rely on non-renewable resources. The price of oil is already volatile and is a significant source of financial risk (2) whereas, in contrast, low-carbon investments are becoming increasingly profitable (3). Divestment is a proven, powerful tool for people to collaborate and directly effect large scale change. It was, for example, a key strategy in the ending of South African apartheid and the stigmatisation of the tobacco industry, and will be a key player in the global transition to sustainable energy sources. The University of Bath has fossil fuel holdings totalling half a million pounds including over £100,000 in Shell alone (4). Our call is for the university to divest these holdings and publicly commit to never investing in them again. The activities of these companies are completely incompatible with the university’s own mission (5) and is at odds with much of the work on campus, from the research at the CSCT (6) and the IPR (7) to the discussions at the I-SEE (8). The campaign here at Bath is part of the wider Fossil Free movement – an accumulation of grassroots campaigns at a diverse range of respected institutions around the world, from Le Louvre museum in Paris to the University of Cambridge here in the UK. A quarter of universities in the UK have already committed to divesting, and Bath should be proud to join their ranks. Many of these forward-thinking universities had far more invested (9), so what we are demanding is not out of reach. The wider statement that the University of Bath will make when it divests will be significant and will extend far beyond the removal of the raw finances. In divesting from fossil fuels, the University will be: - Showing solidarity with communities already bearing the brunt of the effects of climate change, most of whom have contributed little to the problem; - Helping to reclaim our democracy from the power of fossil fuel lobbying groups (10); - Contributing to the stigmatisation of the fossil fuel industry: “the most far-reaching threat to fossil fuel companies” (11); - Influencing public discourse on climate change: leading the way for other UK universities and policy makers, too. It is time for the University of Bath to realise how incompatible a safe climate future is with these fossil fuel relationships, and to take meaningful action to go fossil free. This petition for a Fossil Free Bath complements Bath SU policy (12) voted through by 60% of students in early 2016. References (1) http://math.350.org/ (2) https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/mar/03/bank-of-england-warns-of-financial-risk-from-fossil-fuel-investments (3) https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2016/feb/13/renewable-energy-investment-fossil-fuel-divestment-investor-summit-climate-change (4) FOI (5) http://www.bath.ac.uk/about/values/ethics/code-of-ethics.html (6) http://www.bath.ac.uk/csct/research/energy-water.html (7) http://www.bath.ac.uk/ipr/policy-briefs/reports/climate-change.html (8) http://www.bath.ac.uk/i-see/ (9) https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/oct/08/glasgow-becomes-first-university-in-europe-to-divest-from-fossil-fuels (10) http://priceofoil.org/fossil-fuel-industry-influence-in-the-u-s/ (11) http://www.smithschool.ox.ac.uk/research-programmes/stranded-assets/SAP-divestment-report-final.pdf (12) https://www.bathstudent.com/pageassets/policy-governance/2015-16-4-Fossil-Free-Bath.pdf1,547 of 2,000 SignaturesCreated by Garoe Dorta Perez
Divest Bangor University From Fossil FuelsOur institution can and must help avert a climate crisis.10 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Spike Lewis
University of Portsmouth: Divest from the Fossil Fuel IndustryThe fossil fuel industry is driving the world towards a climate crisis. The science is clear, if we are to avoid catastrophic changes to our planet’s climate, threatening ecosystems and the lives of billions of people, we must drastically reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and transfer to cleaner energy systems. And we must do it quickly. The fossil fuel industry is actively blocking efforts to achieve this transition. It is wielding its unparalleled political influence to ensure global carbon emissions continue to rise, and reaping exorbitant profits at the cost of all our futures. This cannot be allowed to continue. It is incumbent upon all people of conscience now to take a stand against those individuals and institutions that would enrich themselves at humanity’s expense. The first step in doing that is to declare that you won’t be one of them. The University of Portsmouth should not attempt to profit from this morally bankrupt industry, and should join the growing international movement to withdraw its social license to operate.38 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Green Society
FOSSIL FREE FOR THE FUTUREBecause burning fossil fuels causes: - global warming - rising sea levels - damage to our vital ozone layer - increased air pollution ... ... and much more harm besides.14 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Jake Yeates
University of Bradford: Divest from Fossil FuelsTo a significant extent, the future of students currently studying at the University of Bradford will be shaped by contemporary responses to the threat of dangerous climate change. We believe that it is the University's responsibility to do all within its power to contribute to solutions to the climate crisis that fully respect the conclusions of climate science, and that are in line with principles of equity and justice.54 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Ute Kelly
Get University of Edinburgh to fully divest from fossil fuels and arms!Recent projections have shown that if we continue to emit CO2 at our current rates, the world will warm by a total of 4 degrees by the end of the century. It is clear that our future does not lie within fossil fuels so we must find sustainable energy alternatives before it is too late. Despite this, and despite having committed to divesting from some fossil fuel companies, the University of Edinburgh still has vast sums of money invested in fossil fuels and arms. We believe the University should stand by its ethics and join other universities such as Glasgow and SOAS in divesting fully from fossil fuels and arms companies. We are going to continue the fight and get the university to #divesttherest.15 of 100 SignaturesCreated by Megan Atkins
Divest the Open University from fossil fuelsTo support the speediest conversion to reducing carbon dioxide emissions, encourage politicians to get serious themselves, and to be a consistent part of the solution rather than a part of the problem.239 of 300 SignaturesCreated by Simon Barton