Beginning of the Ende

All across the world, people are taking divestment action as and where they can. Here’s a great blog about the recent action in Germany, Ende Gelande. (Here, and no further.)

Mountains, pictures, action.

“I’m so glad to see people drawing a firm line in the coalfields, and stopping the planet’s largest coal-digging machines. We’re driven not by ideology but by physics: there’s simply no way to burn all this lignite and keep the climate intact. These protesters are lifeguards for an endangered planet.”

Bill McKibben,

Photo: Tobias Mandt Photo: Tobias Mandt

I’m running and I’m running and I’m just one, just one amongst hundreds of people running to escape the batons and the pepper spray, running to break through the police line and run on and on across the field to the mine. But as we’re running and my legs are pumping and the adrenaline’s thumping I turn and see something that makes my blood turn cold and time stand still. I see a man made massive with body armour and a helmet and a baton, and I see him throw his shoulder back and form…

View original post 1,557 more words


Divest Carleton member writes to the Sierra Club

(This letter was sent by one of Divest Carleton’s founding members to the Sierra Club regarding their recent ranking of ‘green colleges.’ )

To the editor:
As a long time Sierra Club activist, I am appalled that your magazine would again rank “green” colleges without reference to their record on fossil fuel divestment. We now know that to avoid catastrophic climate change, the majority of carbon reserves already on the books will have to be left in the ground. But the fossil fuel companies continue with basic business plans that ignore this reality and seek to burn it all, find more, and then burn that. To protect those plans they “invest” millions in candidate support and lobbying to prevent significant political action.
It is not “cool,” but flat our wrong for colleges to continue to profit from these companies, essentially creating a vested interest in their success. There may have been a time when the “on-campus” indicators were a useful way to identify green colleges. That time is now gone. By publishing these rankings the Club gives opponents of divestment ammunition which they can use to argue about what is really “cool” and “green.”
On-campus actions are laudable and necessary, but more is needed to address climate change.Think of it this way. If every college in the top 100 meets its most ambitions “on-campus” greenhouse gas reduction goals, it will not make even a ripple in total emissions. But if all 100 divested their fossil fuel holdings, it would significantly change the moral and political climate surrounding fossil fuels, and could well spark a grass roots movement powerful enough to seriously address the dire threats that we face.
My hope is that you will write a correction or retraction or, perhaps publish a new list which recognizes divestment as a crucial indicator. In any case, please, in next year’s rankings, make up the green list based on divestment support and relegate on-campus greening to side articles which identify some of the more creative actions, as was done with divestment in this issue.
Brett A. Smith