To: President Richard Brodhead:

Duke University: Go Fossil Free!

Because it is unconscionable to pay for our education with investments that will condemn the planet to climate disaster, we call on Duke University to immediately freeze any new investment in fossil-fuel companies, and to divest within five years from direct ownership and from any commingled funds that include fossil-fuel public equities and corporate bonds.

Why is this important?

Climate change is accelerating. We are witnessing the increasing impacts of a warming planet more and more consistently; in this last year alone our country experienced record-breaking heat, droughts, and hurricanes, which impacted hundreds of thousands of people and cost our country hundreds of billions of dollars. Hurricane Sandy alone caused $50bn in damages. Experts agree that global warming caused by humans burning fossil fuels will continue to accelerate and intensify these tragic climate disasters. The scientific consensus is clear and overwhelming; we cannot safely burn even half of global fossil-fuel reserves without dangerously warming the planet for several thousand years.

As public pressure to confront climate change builds, we call on Duke University to immediately freeze any new investment in fossil-fuel companies, and to divest within five years from direct ownership and from any commingled funds that include fossil-fuel public equities and corporate bonds. We believe such action on behalf of Duke University will not only be a sound decision for our institution's financial portfolio, but also for the wellbeing of its current and future graduating classes, who deserve the opportunity to graduate with a future not defined by climate chaos.

Duke University

Maps © Stamen; Data © OSM and contributors, ODbL


Reasons for signing

  • Divestment is a key way to get big oil to listen up, and start developing alternative fuels.
  • It's time for Duke University to put it's money where it's mouth is about going green. By divesting Duke has an opportunity to brand itself as a leader on sustainable environmental policy.
  • Worried about our future!

Updates

2015-02-01 18:01:23 -0500

Duke University recently rejected the divestment proposal to divest, despite support from over 3500 students and over 100 faculty. The university has decided to continue to invest the endowment in fossil fuels, however the Advisory Committee on Investment Responsibility made several recommendations regarding endowment transparency and shareholder actions to promote better practices on the part of fossil fuel companies.

The report from ACIR and President Brodhead's letter to the students can be read here: http://today.duke.edu/2015/01/acirfossil

As far as the students are concerned, this rejection is just the beginning of the next phase of the divestment campaign.