The fossil fuel industry is unequivocally driving us towards a global climate crisis: we will not keep dangerous climate change at bay without halting our extraction of fossil-fuels. People & Planet is calling on universities to move their money from fossil fuel investments to green energy; to stop the greenwash and to support a clean energy future for all.
People & Planet and the National Union of Students (NUS) announced today that over a third of universities in the UK have made fossil free commitments, as nine new UK universities have committed to never invest in fossil fuel companies. This brings the total to fifty four institutions which have taken action to exclude fossil fuel companies from their investment portfolios.
Last week at the Barclays Annual General Meeting (AGM), the Chairman John McFarlane told shareholders that the bank would be withdrawing their financing of fracking company Third Energy - licensed to frack in Ryedale, North Yorkshire. Barclays owns 97% controlling stakes in Third Energy. This could be a huge victory for the anti-fracking and climate justice movement in the UK, showing the power of organising and building coalitions in our local communities.
St Andrews doesn’t do protests. The normally polite town had its first
large protest of the academic year on 30 January when a couple of
hundred protesters marched through the town to protest Donald Trump’s
immigration ban. One of the signs read; “You know it’s bad when it’s
protested in St Andrews” emphasising the placid nature of the student
On the 2nd of December, Bristol Green Party Councillor Carla Denyer put forward a motion to Bristol University's ‘Court’ with the support of the UoB Fossil Free campaign. The motion both proposed that the University should ‘set a lead in tackling climate change’ by gradually phasing out its investments in companies which derive the majority of their revenue from fossil fuel extraction, and advises the Board to commit to completing this by the end of 2021. In 2015, Denyer submitted a similar motion to the Court, which was only 3% short of passing.
New research from People & Planet’s University League has shown that a quarter of UK higher education institutions have committed to some form of divestment from fossil fuels. This represents a massive victory for the Fossil Free campaign, still only three years old in the UK. Fossil Free has been named the fastest growing divestment movement in history; now we have the data to back that up.