To: Vice-Chancellor Nigel Carrington

UNIVERSITY OF THE ARTS: GO FOSSIL FREE!

UNIVERSITY OF THE ARTS: GO FOSSIL FREE!

UAL PROMISES TO DIVEST

Fossil Free UAL warmly welcomes the news that UAL will divest its endowments of £3.9m from fossil fuels. This is a moment to celebrate, as it clearly signals that the reasoned arguments made by staff and students of Fossil Free UAL have been heard!

But to keep a sense of proportion, we should recognise that this is not full divestment. The sum divested is a small fraction of the university's total funds (total income of £249 million; a surplus of £26 million in July 2014). So we still have a long way to go for UAL to fully align its finances with the excellent work being done to advance sustainability in teaching and research.

Overwhelming scientific evidence that fossil fuels cause climate chaos and harm human health is informing growing public pressure for governments to develop coherent policies for rapid transition to a zero carbon economy. If we fail, the consequences will be global catastrophe. If we succeed, fossil fuels will be 'stranded assets', which will be impossible to sell. So moving forward, whether the motive is ethical or pragmatic, our aim must be for all UAL's capital and revenue to be not only disconnected from fossil fuels, but re-invested in renewable energy that is decentralised, diversified and democratically controlled. At a critical time for the world, it's really encouraging that we are beginning to see positive change, and the growing support across UAL is real cause for hope.

Share the petition: https://campaigns.gofossilfree.org/p/ual

As members of the UAL community, we are expected to exceed boundaries, investigate critical issues, and think creatively about all that we encounter. We are students at this school because we want to move forward— to affect change in our lives and the world around us. Because it is unconscionable to pay for our education with investments that will condemn the planet to climate disaster, we call on UAL 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.

Visit our website to find out more about divestment and for the latest news and information on our campaign: https://ualdivest.wordpress.com/

If it is wrong to wreck the climate, then it is wrong to profit from that wreckage. We want the University of the Arts London to...

1. Move their money
Freeze any new current investment policies in fossil fuel companies, commit to divesting from them and shift funds to long-term, lower risk ethical investments within 5 years.

2. Stop the greenwash
Stop accepting sponsorship and advertising from fossil fuel companies, including their promotion at careers fairs.

3. Support a clean energy future for all
Provide students with ethical careers advice and opportunities

4. Adhere to and strengthen the current Ethical Investment Policy.

5. If the university does not have any direct or indirect investments with fossil fuels at present, we call upon the university to implement a robust investment policy stating that it will never invest in any of the top 200 fossil fuel companies.

Why is this important?

To put the University of the Arts at the forefront of the global movement to reject our reliance on fossil fuels.

To follow the successful example of the University of Glasgow, who have recently achieved a divestment policy.

To achieve transparency, so that students (current and prospective) know where their money is going, and all members of the University know its position on environmental issues.

From 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.

For more information:
http://peopleandplanet.org/fossil-free
http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/oct/08/glasgow-becomes-first-university-in-europe-to-divest-from-fossil-fuels

How it will be delivered

We aim to get at least 1000 signatures and ask to meet the Head of Finance.


Reasons for signing

  • Have come all the way form Australia to come to UAL - it is SO important to change the status quo of fossil power investment - I want to rest easy that UAL - this extraordinary educational organisation - is not blind to ANY part of its impact. Scientific evidence is clear that fossil fuels cause climate chaos and harm human health, species maintenance etc.
  • As if the debt isn't enough. Feels like former generations really have it in for us.
  • I just started AS Levels: all I can think about, since my sister told me how disheartening it was to learn of Imperial (her university)'s runaway investment, is how I want to know that the admired UAL continues to change for the better and that, as an aspiring art student, any university I go to won't be using my money to support fossil fuels.

Updates

2015-10-10 15:33:33 -0400

100 signatures reached

2015-10-10 15:18:30 -0400

50 signatures reached

2015-10-10 15:12:48 -0400

25 signatures reached

2015-05-29 09:03:07 -0400

10 signatures reached