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Reed agrees to divest fossil fuel stocks
Reed College announced Monday that it will sell its endowment investments in oil and coal stocks, joining the divestment movement to raise awareness about climate change.
Reed is going beyond merely selling its fossil fuels stocks. It will redeploy the proceeds with environmentally conscious investment managers and community-owned renewable energy projects.
"This is the right time to divest," said Roger Perlmutter, chairman of the Reed Board of Trustees, "and even more importantly, to reinvest in the rapidly growing sustainable energy sector."
The Southeast Portland private college announced its decision during the commencement ceremony for its 2014 graduation class.
The Board of Trustees has been considering the issue in response to requests by climate activists that include students, professors, and alumni.
A Reed committee made up of trustees, faculty, administrators and students evaluated the idea, and found that divestment of fossil fuel investments was warranted by the colleges Investment Responsibility Policy. The committee noted that an increasing number of donors to Reed were concerned their money would be used to buy fossil fuel stocks.
"It is crucial at this moment in history for institutions like Reed to follow through on their commitments to serve the public good," says President John R. Kroger. "Climate change is likely to seriously affect the lives of our students, and financially supporting the industries responsible for it undermines Reed's mission."
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