The global fossil fuel divestment campaign continues apace, with the University of Hawaii agreeing to divest from coal, oil, and gas companies, making it the largest university to do so.
The University of Hawaii Board of Regents voted this week to divest the University’s $66 million endowment, following a report provided by a University-appointed group tasked with investigating the complete divestment from fossil fuels.
“The board approached its discussion on divestment with the spirit of collaboration,” said UH Board of Regents Chair Randy Moore. “The divestment task group was comprised of faculty, students, administrators and board members. The result was a superb collaborative effort and the final outcome represented the best of shared governance.”
The Task Group on Divestment and Sustainability made several recommendations, primarily, a recommendation towards divesting from fossil fuels as well as a second proposal reinforcing the University’s commitment to sustainability.
According to the Task Group, “divestment can and should occur … in a manner that will maintain the Board’s investment criteria while … maintaining reasonable fee levels.” The reality of their decision is clear, as well, with the Group noting that “the act of divestment will not directly result in the reduction of CO2 emissions.”
“However,” as the Task Group continued in its report (PDF), “the value of divestment is to galvanise the University community as well as the greater community to take action to invest in the production of alternative energy (such as wind and solar), to make energy-saving investments, and to change institutional as well as individual behaviours.”
Image Credit: “Regents, divestment task group and Divest UH supporters celebrate UH fossil fuel divestment”, via University of Hawaii
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