Bill McKibben, Noam Chomsky, James Hansen, Naomi Oreskes, others use auction to bring Multi-School Fossil Fuel Divestment Fund to $50,000

For Immediate Release: February 15, 2016

Contacts: Boston College alumna Annabelle Rebolli, annabellereboli@gmail.com, 347-899-5851

Boston College undergrad Jorge Mejia, mejiajh@bc.edu, 917-484-3048

Website: http://divestfund.org/   |   @DivestFund   |   facebook.com/divestfund

Climate Justice at Boston College:  https://climatejusticebc.com/who-we-are/cjbc-history/

BC Alumni for Climate Justice: https://www.facebook.com/BCAlumClimate/

Bill McKibben, Noam Chomsky, James Hansen, Naomi Oreskes, others use auction to bring Multi-School Fossil Fuel Divestment Fund to $50,000

New York, NY – The Multi-School Fossil-Free Divestment Fund, a grassroots collaboration connecting donors to campus divestment efforts, hosted an auction that raised just under $18,000 for the 26 participating campuses. The auction coincided with the Paris Climate talks, connecting local divestment efforts to the larger political problem that is the climate crisis. The total value is now over $50,000–all donations steered away from universities with fossil fuel investments. A growing chorus of students, alumni, and parents are calling on universities to pull their investments from companies whose practices are incompatible with the globally agreed upon 2° C warming threshold. Schools will only receive the donations in the Fund if they heed this call.

A collaboration among a dozen members of the Fund, the auction effectively expanded the reach of fossil fuel divestment. Auctioned items included many items related to universities with divestment campaigns: a personalized barber-shop-style “Happy Birthday” from Stanford’s Fleet Street singers, Italian ice with Harvard historian of science Naomi Oreskes, lunch with climate scientist-turned-activist James Hansen, conversation with world-renowned linguist and activist Noam Chomsky, and a Climate Denialist Tour of MIT.

Many items reflected the future that climate justice organizers are building: a membership to the Wisconsin Bike Fed, Zipcar gift certificate, Red Fire Farm Locavore Deep Winter CSA Farm Share, family membership to the Aldo Leopold Foundation. Still others were simply delightful: a week’s stay at a cottage on the Isle of White, massages, portrait sessions, and artwork galore. There were items with well-known participants, like a ski excursion with 350.org co-founder and Right Livelihood winner Bill McKibben. As well as lesser-known, like energy insider Sam Brintons tour of congress.

Fran Ludwig, an organizer with the Fund and BC Alumni for Climate Justice explained: “We aimed to have this auction be inclusive, in terms of location, price, and style of the items. That’s because we wanted to engage people to one powerful part of the climate justice movement–fossil fuel divestment.” Together with other organizers, donors are being contacted and recruited into climate activism. After all, explained CJBC member and BC first year Jorge Mejia, “money doesn’t mean much without people–people organized to fight the fossil fuel juggernaut is our only hope.”

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