Divest Princeton implores University to truly cut all ties with fossil fuel companies

February 9, 2023

On Friday, February 3rd, 2023, students belonging to Divest Princeton mounted a catchy banner prominently atop Blair Hall arch. This banner, along with hand-held signs, implored the University to take further steps than it already had promised by removing from its endowment all investments in fossil fuel companies and to end financial relationships with such companies. PPro is proud to support Divest Princeton by financing the cost of the banner.

Although you may have heard that the University announced divestment plans from fossil fuels in September, 2022, the steps they outlined did not amount to total divestment. As Divest Princeton noted:

“After Princeton divests from publicly traded fossil fuel companies, the University will still have $700 million invested in private fossil fuel companies. These tend to be the worst emitters, operating out of the public eye and beyond the oversight of financial regulators. Princeton must FULLY divest.

In terms of dissociation, we are also continuing to fight for a fossil free Princeton. Princeton must end fossil fuel funding of research (BP´s funding of Princeton’s Carbon Mitigation Institute, for example) and industry recruiting on campus (any fossil fuel company is currently free to recruit on campus according to the updated definition of dissociation). Princeton has dissociated from 90 companies – that represents only 10% of known fossil fuel companies. Princeton must end all institutional relationships with the fossil fuel industry.”

Reflecting on the University’s announcement, Divest Princeton added: “The actions announced on September 29,2022 by the University and the Board of Trustees are a huge step towards full divestment and dissociation from fossil fuels. This decision is the result of a decade of activism by Princeton students, faculty, staff, and alumni. While the Trustees fail to acknowledge this activism, Divest Princeton is proud of what has been accomplished. And although the University has taken a critical step, Princeton still falls short. Divest Princeton will keep fighting for our goals of full divestment and the end to all fossil fuel funding of research on campus. We know that it’s possible: They’ve come this far. It’s Princeton’s moment to become a leader.”

You can find more photographs from the Blair Arch banner drop event here and read about the event in the Princeton Alumni Weekly. If you want to learn more about Divest Princeton, visit their website.

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