Demand University Divest from Fossil Fuels


Target: President Hennessy and the Stanford Board of Trustees

Goal: Divest Stanford University from all forms of fossil fuel.

Recently, 295 Stanford professors sent a letter to the University’s President and Board of Trustees urging that Stanford divest its endowment of all fossil fuel holdings. The group of professors, including two Nobel laureates, posit the contradiction in seeking to educate youth to contribute to a better future while simultaneously investing in the destruction of that future. Show your support for the professors of Stanford University and their comprehensive demand to divest from all forms of fossil fuels by signing below.

A growing number of colleges and universities, religious institutions, cities, counties, foundations, and other investment groups have been committing to some form of fossil fuel divestment for a few years now. Whether it is a minimum commitment to divest from coal and tar-sands or a comprehensive divestment from oil and natural gas as well, these financial responses to the negligent fossil fuel corporations really hit them where it hurts; just the top 500 or so university endowments hold nearly $400 billion.

In May of 2014, Stanford announced that it would divest from coal companies but only a few months later invested in three more oil and gas companies. The University’s endowments total $21.4 billion. A strong push from some of the largest universities is a vital part of transitioning to a sustainable energy future. In 2014, renewable sources supplied seven percent of the U.S.’s electricity and earlier that year, ironically, a Stanford scientist and his colleagues published a paper outlining a state-by-state roadmap to reach 100 percent renewable energy by 2050.

Despite the financial power held by the largest fossil fuel corporations and the persistent political impasse in Washington D.C., we still have the power to influence wealthy institutions that are more responsive to the moral concerns of climate change. Tell the Stanford President and Board of Trustees that you support the divestment from all fossil fuels by signing below.


Dear President Hennessey and Board of Trustees,

I have learned of the letter that 295 members of your esteemed faculty have recently sent you urging the divestment of University endowments from all forms of fossil fuels. I stand in complete agreement with this request and I hope you too see the importance of this; not just as an act of financial extrication, but as a symbolic message to those companies who believe fossil fuel investments will continue indefinitely and to readers around the world who see only inaction from the United States.

As an eminent university, your decision to divest entirely from non-renewable energy will echo across the world and further catalyze the divestment movement. We have seen too many superficial responses and half-hearted commitments in response to our rapid ecological destruction. Consequently, I strongly urge you to commit in divesting from natural gas and oil endowments in addition to coal and tar sands.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Hochgeladen von Jawed via Creative Commons

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331 Signatures

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