Our SU development officer Jack Wyse, who is a strong supporter of the fossil fuel divestment campaign, was present at the meeting to put the matter of fossil fuel divestment squarely in front of some of the University’s big financial ‘movers and shakers’ including Bob Rabone (Head of Finance), David Young (the Investment Group Chairman) and representatives from Sarasins & partners (the body that manages the University’s investments). People and Planet also turned out at the Arts Tower in full force with signs and banners in hand, to make a big impression on these individuals as they arrived at the meeting.
During the meeting Sarasins and Partners said that they were aware of the Fossil Free campaign at other universities whose funds they also manage but that this was the first time they had actually discussed divestment in the context of a board meeting: an achievement we can be proud of! However whilst in principle they were in agreement with the idea, the other board members said that they would not make a statement of intent to begin divesting from fossil fuels (yet).
So all this means is that we need to keep campaigning as hard as ever to put more pressure on the University to divest before they begin drawing up their ‘Sustainable Investment Policy’ in May. And with our petition reaching the 1000 signature mark last week, there is every sign that we’re gaining momentum!