To: President Levin-Stankevich and Board of Trustees
Westminster College: Go Fossil Free!
We, the students of Westminster College, do not want our education paid for with dividends from fossil fuel companies. Because Climate Change is the great challenge of our futures, and Westminster College is here to prepare us for our future, we strongly encourage the administration to support Divestment. We realize that our endowment is managed by a third party manager, but we would like Westminster's Board of Trustees to support this and send a statement to this manager endorsing that they filter out fossil fuel companies when investing our money.
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 Westminster College 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 Westminster College 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.