I urge all alumni who are concerned about the climate crisis to read Divest Princeton’s full response and analysis of the faculty report on fossil-fuel dissociation (On the Campus, July/August issue) on the website https:.
Over two years ago, Divest Princeton began urging the University to divest its $1.7 billion holdings in fossil fuels. We know that when Princeton wants to, it can act quickly and decisively. In 2017, when President Donald Trump rescinded DACA, Princeton filed a federal lawsuit only 58 days later. However, when it comes to combatting the climate crisis, Princeton is perfecting the art of delay and disinformation.
In May of 2021, with much self-congratulation, Princeton’s trustees announced that Princeton would consider dissociating from coal and tar sands. But this past year, as part of the faculty panel’s proceedings, it was quietly made public that the endowment has no exposure to companies that derive more than 15 percent of revenues from tar sands and only $19 million in run-off mode in thermal coal. When the dissociation statement was made in 2021, did the trustees, several of whom are also PRINCO directors, know that 98.9 percent of the $1.7 billion they had in oil and gas would go untouched? Did Princeton intentionally greenwash its own divestment announcement?
Alumni of this university must stop being enablers of the Board of Trustees’ complicity and lift their voices as this existential crisis unfolds in front of our eyes.