Commercial, GHG Emissions, Finance - October 3, 2022
Princeton Trustees Vote to Divest From Oil Companies
Princeton University announced its Board of Trustees voted to divest the endowment from all publicly traded fossil-fuel companies, including Exxon Mobil and Dominion Energy.
The move was made seven years after the Princeton Sustainable Investment Initiative sent in a proposal calling for the university to sell its assets in coal companies and other fossil fuels, according to an article in the Princeton Alumni Weekly.
In 2020, Divest Princeton, a group of students and alumni, renewed the effort by sending in a proposal to the Council of the Princeton University Community (CPUC).
The CPUC reviewed the proposal and in May 2021 its board announced it planned to separate itself from companies that participated in climate disinformation.
The board committed to “a net-zero endowment portfolio,” according to a University announcement. “The Princeton University Investment Company (Princo) will eliminate its fossil-fuel holdings and “ensure that the endowment does not benefit from any future exposure to those companies.”
“The actions taken by the University and the Board of Trustees are a huge step towards the full divestment and dissociation from fossil fuels,” Divest Princeton co-coordinators Nate Howard ’25 and Aaron Serianni ’25 told PAW by email. “This decision is the result of a decade of activism by Princeton students, faculty, staff, and alumni.”
Princeton announced in March that its investments in fossil fuels totaled $1.7 billion or 4.5%.