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We are Fossil Free WashU, a student campaign at Washington University in St. Louis focused on pressuring the university to divest from the top 200 fossil fuel companies.
What do we want?
“We want Washington University to immediately freeze any new investment in fossil fuel companies, and divest from direct ownership and any commingled funds that include fossil fuel public equities and corporate bonds within five years.” Fossil fuel companies pose very real climatic threats to our future and should not be supported by Washington University endowment fund investments. We want Washington University to take a step toward environmental sustainability and social responsibility and lead similar institutions to a fair energy future.
Why do we want this?
Weakening the fossil fuel industry is an ethical decision to stand against climate change, environmental destruction, and social injustice. Washington University’s endowment is $7.4 billion, a portion of which is being used to hold stock in fossil fuel companies. By making more ethically sound investment choices, Washington University can help realize a sustainable energy future and take a stand against corporate models that prioritize profit over our planet.
It is unethical to allow an entire industry to pollute the atmosphere without paying for the impacts and damage. In order for this injustice to be resolved, the fossil fuel industry must relinquish fiscal and political power. Washington University must take a stand to fight this injustice and refuse to support companies whose actions are destructive and unethical.