Georgetown University’s board of directors voted to divest the school’s endowment from coal companies Thursday, a move that fell short of students’ hopes for divestment from all fossil fuel companies.
Students staged a sit-in on campus in the lead-up to the board meeting to press the school’s board of directors to vote in favor of divesting from fossil fuels. They were disappointed by the board’s final decision — coal makes up only a small portion of the board’s total investments, they said, and as a Jesuit institution, Georgetown has a moral obligation to divest from fossil fuels.
According to a Sept. 2013 New York Times report, it would take a global temperature increase of two degrees Celsius to cause drastic and irreparable climate changes. Around 2040, the report estimated the trillionth ton of fossil fuels will be burned, at which point companies will need to figure out a way to capture and store their carbon emissions to avoid going over the two-degree threshold.
Climate Justice at Boston College (CJBC), an unregistered student organization, has been attempting to convince the University’s administration to divest from fossil fuels. Currently, it is hoping to attract the support of other students and alumni who are unhappy with the University’s endowment’s being partially invested in fossil fuel companies. When describing its efforts, CJBC posits a positive correlation between fossil fuel consumption and rising temperatures.
The end of the second annual climate change conference at Loyola University Chicago began a transition to a new action phase extending beyond U.S. borders.
The conference, which ran March 19-21, saw the six participant upper Midwest Jesuit universities sharing curricular ideas and resources, with an eye toward developing the best educational practices and forming a strong collaborative force for sustainability and addressing environmental issues in the years ahead. On the conference’s final day, its host Nancy Tuchman, director of Loyola-Chicago’s Institute of Environmental Sustainability, announced the schools would collectively, as Jesuit institutions that are part of a larger network, “develop a statement that gives a common voice to Jesuit concern for the planet with a call to action.”
“We are going to conduct an intervention,” yelled Alyssa Florack, A&S ’17. In her background stood approximately 45 people, holding signs urging Boston College to divest in fossil fuels. Friday afternoon, a group of students participated in a Valentine’s Day-themed rally and vigil organized by Climate Justice at Boston College (CJBC). The rally started at 3 p.m. in O’Neill Plaza. From there, participants walked across Stokes Lawn, up onto College Rd., and finally reached the office of University President William P. Leahy S.J. on Mayflower Rd.