September 10, 2021 Read More →

Harvard endowment will stop future investment in fossil fuels

The Harvard Crimson:

Following years of public pressure, Harvard said Thursday it would allow its remaining investments in the fossil fuel industry to expire, paving the way for it to eventually divest from the sector. The move marks a stark twist in a decade-long saga that has pitted student activists against University administrators and dominated campus politics for years.

In an email to Harvard affiliates Thursday afternoon, University President Lawrence S. Bacow — who has for years publicly opposed divestment — stopped short of using the word divest, but said that “legacy investments” through third-party firms “are in runoff mode,” and called financial exposure to the fossil fuel industry imprudent.

Fossil Fuel Divest Harvard, which has been pushing the University to pull its investments in the fossil fuel industry since it was founded in 2012, declared victory.

“So long as Harvard follows through, this is divestment,” Connor Chung ’23, a Divest Harvard organizer, said. “This is what they told us for a decade they couldn’t do, and today, the students, faculty, and alumni have been vindicated.”

Bacow wrote that the Harvard Management Company, which manages the University’s $41.9 billion endowment, “does not intend” to make future investments in the fossil fuel industry. He said the University would not renew HMC’s partnerships with private equity funds that have holdings in the sector once its current obligations to them expire

[Jasper Goodman and Kelsey Griffin]

More: Harvard Will Move to Divest its Endowment from Fossil Fuels

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