7 March 2018
Figures from the Cambridge Green Party have condemned the University of Cambridge as reports suggest a key report set to be published will fudge the issue of divestment from fossil fuels.
The ‘divestment’ movement campaigns for public institutions and investment funds to end their investments in fossil fuel companies whose actions are hurtling us towards unstoppable and dangerous man made climate change.
Students and academics at the University of Cambridge have backed divestment for the University’s multi-billion pound endowment fund, one of the biggest in the world, which would see the University follow the leads of over 60 other UK investment funds and institutions, including the TUC and Unison.
Yet, despite direction from the University’s Council that ‘none of the University’s Endowment Funds should be invested directly or indirectly in companies whose business is wholly or substantially concerned with the extraction of fossil fuels’, a report from the working group on the issue is set to avoid recommending complete divestment.
Speaking on the issue, 2017 Green MP candidate Stuart Tuckwood said;
‘It’s well understood that to give ourselves any chance of keeping global warming to a manageable level we cannot afford to burn the reserves of fossil fuels that are already on the books of oil and gas companies, yet alone exploring for and exploiting more.
The actions of fossil fuel companies threaten all our futures. No amount of ‘greenwashing’ can hide the simple fact that if they continue to operate as usual they will very soon take us past the point where we lose the ability to hold global temperature rises to the manageable level agreed by world leaders at the Paris Climate agreement.
Man made climate change is already having a devastating impact on the planet and people. Profiting from investments in these companies is criminal.
Unfortunately the University, host to some of the world’s most renowned academics, does not have the excuse of ignorance. Their actions must then be driven by selfishness and greed.
Institutions as varied as the Universities of Glasgow and Edinburgh, the Trade Union Congress, the Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund, are divesting and Cambridge is being left a long way behind. Students and academics at the University support divestment, making management’s feet dragging on the issue unacceptable.’
Jeremy Caddick, the Dean of Emmanuel College and Green Party candidate for Market said;
‘Cambridge University has a global profile. We need to send a powerful message that the future must be fossil free and that time is running out for this transition.
The University cannot carry on ducking this issue. There is clear support for divestment amongst staff and students and the University of Cambridge should be leading on this issue. Many other universities and institutions have already agreed to divest.
The University must listen to their students, who are demanding a sustainable future.’
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