Tufts Faculty Petition for Fossil Fuel Divestment
We, the undersigned faculty of Tufts University, call upon the trustees of the University to divest Tufts endowment funds from fossil fuel companies.
The scientific consensus regarding climate change has been vividly punctuated by strange weather, more frequent and intense storms, dangerous sea level rise, and rapid loss of polar ice and glaciers. In many cases, human suffering from climate change has hit those least responsible for it and those without resources to deal with its consequences. The evidence is clear. Major disruptions from flooding and drought threaten current and future generations. The economic cost, already significant, is only starting to mount. And the diversity of animal and plant life on the planet is being challenged in many ways. Our basic sense of justice and security compels us to address the sources of climate change, particularly our current dependency on fossil fuels.
Institutions of higher education have the special responsibility of preparing students for active citizenship, and Tufts has taken a leadership role among them. In 1990, under the leadership of Tufts President Jean Mayer, the University Presidents Conference met in France and published the Talloires Declaration, which is notable as the first official statement by university administrators to address environmental literacy and education for sustainability. That document recognized the threat posed by the “emission of ‘green house’ gases” to “the integrity of the earth and its biodiversity, the security of nations, and the heritage of future generations.” Even then, the University Presidents believed that urgent action was needed to address the fundamental problems and reverse the trend.
Tufts University has an opportunity for continued leadership by being the first research university to divest from fossil fuel companies. We can realize our institution's commitment to global leadership and active citizenship, and take a strong and positive step by signaling the need for a new energy policy. We will send a powerful message to other universities and to the world. Divestment alone is not enough, but divestment is certainly an important step along the way.
Julian Agyeman, Professor and Chair, Department of Urban & Environmental Policy and Planning
Elizabeth Ammons, Professor of English
Jonathan E. Kenny, Professor of Chemistry
Paul Joseph, Professor of Sociology
Bruce Hitchner, Professor of Classics and International Relations
John Durant, Associate Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering
We, THE UNDERSIGNED, call on THE TRUSTEES OF TUFTS COLLEGE to divest the endowment's holdings in the largest 200 publicly traded fossil fuel companies within 5 years
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