The University of Glasgow has voted in favour of divesting from fossil fuels. The University Court’s historical decision sees Glasgow becoming the first academic institution in the UK to get rid of its investments in the industry.
A statement on the university website says that the £18 million of current investments will be reallocated over the next ten years, ‘subject to reassurance that the financial impact for the university is acceptable.’
The decision to divest was made after a year-long campaign run by the Glasgow University Climate Action Society (GUCA). Alongside backing from the SRC, the campaign saw flashmobs, fake oil spills, petitions, rallies, and a strong online presence.
Breffni O’Connor, President of the SRC, told qmunicate: ‘The SRC is incredibly delighted with the decision by the University Court to divest from the Fossil Fuel industry. This decision is a testament to the strength of effective student activism. This campaign by the SRC and the Glasgow University Climate Action Society has concentrated on securing environmental and financial sustainability for the University community and wider society for generations to come. This historic decision fits well with the University’s role in society as a forum of debate a vehicle of social progress and an institution which acts on its green values rather than paying lip service to them.’
The decision is not only a victory for GUCA and the SRC, but for all student activists at the university. The announcement has been well received around the world, with students across the UK celebrating the Court’s decision in the hope that their university will now follow in Glasgow’s footsteps. The support that the fight against divestment was given, not only by students from the university, but by students and environmental campaigners across the world, and the result that it achieved, is a testament to student-led campaigns, and points to a very bright future.
To read the article on why qmunicate supports divestment, click here.
[Louisa Burden – @burdisthew0rd]