Divestment Action Week

Thank you for your interest in Divestment Action Week.

Divestment Action Week will be a mass campus mobilization for fossil fuel divestment. 

To get involved in planning divestment action week, join this group on facebook

What is Fossil Fuel Divestment?

Fossil fuel divestment means taking someone's investments out of the fossil fuel industry and investing them elsewhere.

It is a moral and political statement that supporting the fossil fuel industry is wrong.

Right now there is a campaign to make UofT divest from fossil fuels. The Governing Council has commissioned an ad-hoc committee to issue a non-binding recommendation. Toronto350, UofT350 and other environmental groups are mobilizing students. We are growing as much pressure as possible for fossil fuel divestment.

We explain our argument thoroughly in Toronto350.org's Divestment brief. Our argument is that divestment must be a critical step in keeping the earth below 2 Degrees Celsius of warming. 

Budget

What is Divestment Action Week?

Divestment Action Week is a series of events from Nov 10-14 to raise support for UofT to divest from fossil fuels.

On Monday we will have an art build to engage students in designing the posters and messaging for our Wednesday March.

On Tuesday we will canvass students about our March to raise awareness of Fossil Fuel Divestment and inspire them to join the March.

On Wednesday we will have our big event. The Fossil Free UofT March. We are mobilizing students and organizations across campus for a game-changing show of support for divesting from climate change.

On Thursday we will have a party at a yet to be determined organization to celebrate our gains and have fun with everyone who got involved.

 

How can I get involved?

We would most like it if you joined us. We plan our actions through this Facebook group.


But students are busy, and we will love you for coming to our events too! The March especially.

Why fossil fuel divestment?

As a climate action organization, we are pursuing fossil fuel divestment because it refocuses the abstract challenge of climate change as something that exists in our immediate local institutions.

Divestment fights climate change because we attack the social license of the fossil fuel industry. By social license, we are talking about how it is now socially and politically acceptable to most people for fossil fuel corporations to extract dirty energy. And for our institutions to be invested in them. We want to make supporting the fossil fuel industry socially and politically unacceptable.

Attacking this license is taking away investor confidence in the fossil fuel industry. This means every new divestment increases the risks and costs of fossil fuel production. Increased costs will fossil fuel corporations to stop expanding their dirty projects.

UofT would be the first University in Canada to divest from fossil fuels. This would motivate the campaigns at UBC and McGill. It would inspiring more divestment campaigns in all Canadian universities. It will make national news that Canada's most prestigious University has realized that fossil fuels are an immoral and unprofitable investment.

What is the connection between fossil fuel divestment and the climate crisis?

Fossil fuel production is the major driver of the climate crisis. The climate crisis is the consequence of how much political power the fossil fuel industry has amassed. As a result, the climate movement is unable to make meaningful change to Canadian political policy under the current Conservative government.

Divestment interrupts formal politics by making people debate and consider how their everyday lives contribute to the climate crisis. It makes people ask what they value, and what this means they should do.

The most environmentally effective actions in recent years centre around frontline communities that stop destructive projects by defending their land. Divestment attacks market confidence in expanding fossil fuel production. This diminishes fossil fuel corporations' ability to fund disastrous projects in frontline communities.

By destroying investor confidence in the fossil fuel industry, the divestment movement aims to ultimately take away their money and power. By organizing the university community, it intends to increase and unleash our power.

What will Divestment Action Week accomplish?

Divestment Action Week will do two things: it will make students aware of the fossil fuel divestment conversation; and it will make a critical mass of the university active supporters of fossil fuel divestment.

To win the divestment argument, we need the Governing Council to agree with us.  This means we need to win many social struggles in the University by launching conversations about divestment and convincing people to support it. Divestment Action Week will be a mobilization that will change the University in favour of fossil fuel divestment.

Other Questions?

Toronto350.org has answered a more comprehensive list of questions here.