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Georgetown University to divest from coal companies

coal barge

Georgetown University, Washington, “will not make or continue” direct investments in coal-mining companies on behalf of its $1.5 billion endowment, spokeswoman Rachel Pugh said.

The university's board approved the coal-related resolution Thursday. Georgetown officials also will encourage the endowment's external investment managers to avoid investing in coal companies.

“The work of understanding and responding to the demands of climate change … requires our most serious attention,” said Georgetown President John J. DeGioia in a news release. “We can best respond to this evolving and ongoing challenge when we embrace the tensions embedded in this work … as we seek an ever deeper understanding of how to respond best in ways that contribute to the common good.”

Georgetown University Fossil Free — a student-run campaign urging the university to divest from fossil-fuel companies — and the university's Committee on Investing and Social Responsibility – an advisory committee comprising faculty, students and administrators charged with reviewing proposals on issues related to socially responsible investing — presented their proposals to the board earlier this spring.