The Conservation Breeding Specialist Group (CBSG) announced last week that they are divesting from fossil fuels! The international conservation organization has set itself a goal to be completely fossil fuel free by 2017. CBSG is an international conservation organization whose mission is to save threatened species by making conservation efforts more effective. Though for many years they have understood that climate change stands to undermine all of their conservation efforts. Divestment therefore was the natural next step to greening their institution.
CBSG is hoping for their divestment to send a symbolic message to the larger zoo and aquarium network to take similar action. Onnie Byers, CBSG chair states, “Many zoos and aquariums are going to great lengths to green their institutions. It is equally consistent with their mission for them to green their portfolios as well.”
350.org launched a new fossil fuel divestment campaign this past fall, and in less than 4 months campaigns have sprung up on over 250 colleges and universities across the country. In the picture on the right, you can see Bill McKibben meeting with student leaders from around Minnesota. From big schools like the University of Minnesota to small liberal arts colleges like Gustavus Adolphus College, the idea of divestment is spreading like wildfire. Active campaigns now exist on 12 colleges and universities in Minnesota. To get plugged in, email Patty@MN350.org and she can refer you to the group leaders.
In the last three weeks, student governments at Macalester, Northland, and Augsburg College have all passed resolutions in favor of divestiture! Getting a resolution passed through student government is a prominent and exciting step in the progression of a successful divestment campaign. Once a student government resolution is passed it is very difficult for a Board of Regents to ignore such a statement.
What can you do as an alum?
Interested in writing a letter to your alma mater or getting involved with divestment at your church? Check out this alumni letter writing campaign.
As we go deeper into this campaign, know that MN350 is here to support and leverage your campaigns. Below is a list of resources for your campaign to take advantage of as needed. Our goal is to make a stronger movement by connecting those working on divestment to each other so we can be as effective as possible. To let us know of your interest and/or to give feedback, please fill out this form.
Local Tools/Resources from MN350
- Facebook Page – This is a space to directly share and link your campaign with others around the state.
- MN350 Website
- MN Divestment Google Group – Stay in direct communication with those working on divestment in MN.
- One on one collaboration and coaching. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a conversation.
- Weekly statewide campaign leader conference calls for campaign representatives.
- 2-5 hour campaign tool trainings at the location of your choice. Email email@example.com to schedule a workshop.
- Share your asks and stories through media and the national movement. MN350 is developing relationships with state and national press. Please send us your updates!
National Movement Updates
Check out the Fossil Free blog for a plethora of stories from around the nation.