Divest UW

If it's wrong to wreck the planet, it's wrong to profit from wrecking the planet.


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The Big Day is Almost Here – It’s Time to Divest UW!

Friends of Divest UW,

After tireless campaigning it looks like the big day is upon us, [drum roll please].

Divest UW will be presenting an information item on divestment from thermal coal at the next Board of Regents meeting on the 12th of March. Information items are the step before a vote, so now is a crucial time to build support for our proposal. Below are some ways you can help do so:

  1. Contact the Board of Regents: We need the Board of Regents to know that there is support for this proposal, so what better way to let them know than to contact them. Check out their contact details here, find some talking points here and reach out to them in whichever way suits you best.
  2. Reach out to Alumni and Faculty: We have built up great support from the student body, and now we’re asking for your help to reach out to faculty and alumni. We’ve created a petition for faculty and one for alumni.
  3. Join us at the Board of Regents meeting: The meeting is on the morning of the 12th on the Bothell campus and it would be great to fill the room with support. The meeting time is at 10:50am, possibly subject to change. The details will be posted here by the 6th of March and we’ll send them out when we get them.
  4. Sign up for Public Comments: There is a public comments section at the beginning of the meeting. Sign-up opens on Friday the 6th of March at noon. If you can make it and  give a two minute speech in support of the Divest UW proposal, then please sign on for public comments here when applications open.

Friends, the power of the divestment movement is growing, and the UW can be a leader. Let’s provide them the support to be able to do so.

If you missed out on the powerful wedding of UW and the fossil fuel industry for Global Divestment Day, you can see the beautiful wedding pics at: http://bit.ly/DivestWeddingStory

Onward,

Divest UW


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Alumni Divestment Petition

Friends of divestment,

One of our great alums recently put together a petition for alumni to sign on in favor of the university divesting from fossil fuels. If you’re an alum please sign on and spread the word to other alums too. The alumni voice is a powerful one in helping influence the university so we are going to use it as best as possible.

https://www.change.org/p/university-of-washington-board-of-regents-divest-the-endowment-from-fossil-fuels


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Faculty and Staff Divestment Petition

The Board of Regents will be meeting in March where they will be considering whether to divest the university from coal. To help sway their vote we are trying to get signatures on a faculty and staff petition in favor of the University of Washington divesting from publicly traded companies whose principal business is the mining of coal for use in energy generation. If you know faculty who would be eager to sign on in favor of divestment, please send the petition through to them. We’ve crafted a template email to send through to them if you’d like to use it:

Dear [Insert Name],

Faculty across the country are signing on in favor of universities removing their investments in the harmful fossil fuel industry. On behalf of Divest UW I would like to humbly request your endorsement on the attached faculty and staff petition in favor of the University of Washington divesting from publicly traded companies whose principal business is the mining of coal for use in energy generation. This petition aims to inform the Board of Regents who are set to potentially vote on divestment at their March meeting.

The call already has the support of the Associated Students of the University of Washington and the Graduate and Professional Student Senate. We would greatly appreciate your and other faculty support too. If you are happy to endorse the call, please can you email your name and title to <ccchange@uw.edu>. Also if you are willing please can you send this petition onto other colleagues, faculty and staff at the University of Washington.

If you have any questions. Please do not hesitate to contact <ccchange@uw.edu>.
On behalf of Divest UW, thank you for your time and hopefully your support,
[Insert name]
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Global Divestment Day

People across the world are coming together on Global Divestment Day to show that
The People > The Fossil Fuel IndustryChalkhistory

Come join Divest UW for a day of fun action in UW’s Red Square! We will be holding a mock wedding, binding the University to the Fossil Fuel industry that it seems to love. We’ll also be having a banner drop, taking an aerial photo, and eating some Global Day of Divesment “Wedding Cake!”

Wear orange, bring posters, bikes, banners and all your friends, and let’s make fossil fuels history. Bring along your objections as to why the university shouldn’t follow through with this terrible marriage.

Time: 12:10pm
Date: Friday the 13th of February
Place: The Steps of Suzallo Library in Red Square

Facebook Link: https://www.facebook.com/events/1390521681252553/


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Reviving the Divestment Ask

10253795_666653906704288_2374805130397698410_nWhile this blog space has been quiet for the last while, Divest UW has most certainly not been. In fact, just in case you missed it, in the last month our continued work has been featured on KUOW, the Seattle Times and the Stranger.

More than that, we’ve been back in meetings with the Board of Regents, and building on our previous work we’re bringing back the divestment ask! Check out our stellar new policy for more details on just what we’re asking for, and details on how we’re building on past victories to try and become one of the few major universities with a comprehensive, ethically responsible, fiscally sound and all-round powerful approach to tacking the climate crisis.

We’re hoping to present this to the Board of Regents at their next meeting. More details to follow soon. We’re excited and we hope you are too! Keen to get involved? Then email us on ccchange@uw.edu

PS: Illustrating the strength of our Divestment ask, AMP ( a major investor), just decided to dump stocks in pretty much exactly the companies we’re targeting for direct divestment: http://www.smh.com.au/business/mining-and-resources/amp-fund-dumps-fossil-fuel-investments-20140528-394iz.html


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Divest UW Secures Victory with 5 Global Climate Change Initiatives

FF-logoOn November 13, 2013, the University of Washington  Finance, Audit and Facilities Committee of the Board of Regents formally approved our 2013 Climate Change Initiatives. These measures, ranging from the adoption of E.S.G. to participation in shareholder advocacy with respect to our currently held fossil-fuel assets, signify the first major step toward the establishment of a green endowment. This is only the beginning. For more details on our victory click HERE

Divest UW thanks every member of the campaign, past and present, for their support, and we hope to see deeper engagement in the weeks and months to come. During Spring Quarter 2014, we meet every Tuesday at 7PM in Savery Hall 156, as we work on ensuring that UW and the broader community takes every step possible to ensure a just future. If you are interested in joining Divest UW/ Confronting Climate Change please join us at our meetings or send an email to ccchange@uw.edu


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A Successful Rally with the Regents

Yesterday was Divest UW’s most important day yet. As one member posted on Facebook, “We have the Board’s attention! We have momentum! We will get this University to divest…come Hell or high water!” The day began with a pep talk from Seattle City Councilmember Mike O’Brien who talked about how the City of Seattle became the first city to publicly commit to divestment from fossil fuel companies. It was encouraging to hear how quickly the City chose to move on divestment.

After Councilmember O’Brien’s talk we gathered our whole crowd and climbed a back staircase to the fourth floor of the Allen Library. We stood outside the meeting room with our signs, purple t-shirts, and excitement as members of the Board of Regents squeezed through our crowd to get ready for their meeting. We packed the seats and lined the sides and rear of the room with divestment supporters from UW, Seattle’s new 350 group, and local supporters. Since the Board wouldn’t let us get on their actual agenda we stacked the entire public comment period with divestment presentations. Sarra Tekola, John Crawford-Gallagher, Joshua Cowgill, Robbie Marsh, and Kyle Murphy, organizers with Divest UW, spoke with clarity and conviction to the Regents who listened politely and read a prepared statement. Of course, we knew they wouldn’t give much response; our success was capturing their attention for a few minutes.

Then we tried to keep their attention. The group left the Regents with a nearly empty room and gathered outside their window. With the help of a megaphone Noam Gaster lead us in songs and chants. Speakers filled the air with passionate calls for divestment and the many reasons why our university should not associate itself with companies looking to destroy our future.

Thanks to all who came out in support of divestment yesterday. You made our day an incredible success! Let’s keep up the momentum come Hell or high water! (and we know at least one of those is on the way…)

Check out some of the press coverage we’ve received so far and our Facebook page for more pictures.

Video: Watch the speeches courtesy of David McFatridge at Seattle 350.

If you have photos or video please send them to divestuw@gmail.com. Thanks!

 

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