NUI Galway Climate Congress – Divestment and Sustainable Choices
Tuesday 21st of March 2017
Join us for NUI Galway’s third annual Climate Congress – sponsored by Trócaire and organized by the CCAFS Society (Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security). This year’s theme focuses on efforts towards divestment from fossil fuels and sustainable investment at both local and national levels.
This year’s speakers include:
-Thomas Pringle T.D. Creator of Irelands National Divestment Bill
-Ian Halstead of L&P Investments (Dublin)
-Nuala Haughey of Think-Tank for Action on Social Change
There will also be a participatory working group to discuss strategies for overcoming barriers to political engagement in the context of climate change from 14:00-17:00 If you wish to attend this, please select both general admission and workshop tickets below (note that in the interest of time efficiency this working group will be capped at a maximum of 25 participants).
Tickets available at this link
NUI Galway commits to Fossil Fuel Divestment
On Tuesday the 28th of February, students from the Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) Society of NUI Galway were informed that their campaign had been a success. NUI Galway has officially committed to divest from fossil fuel shares by the end of 2017.
The CCAFS society had submitted a petition of over 1,000 signatures, and a report highlighting the case for divestment of the €3.4 million worth of shares that NUI Galway has invested in companies such as Gazprom and Statoil in late November. This report was welcomed by University President, Dr James Browne, who highlighted divestment of fossil fuel shares is in line with the values held by NUI Galway with regards to sustainability.
Colm Duffy, Auditor of the CCAFS Society, Director of the Fossil Free Campaign and Students’ Union Postgraduate Officer was pleased with the results so far: “It is with no small measure of delight that we announce NUI Galway’s commitment to divestment. We are extremely happy with the result and the support from Dr Browne. We are glad that this campaign has come to a conclusion, and we look forward to assisting NUI Galway in the formation of its Ethical Investment Policy”.
Students’ Union President, Jimmy McGovern, who has worked closely with the CCAFS society, added: “NUI Galway’s decision to completely divest from fossil fuels shows leadership in the right direction. This proposal began through student activism and is a prime example of why we must empower students, the future of our society, by giving them a platform to have influence and input in our University’s developments. NUI Galway has given its students that platform in this instance and we applaud them for that.”
Speaking of the University’s significant commitment to fossil fuel divestment, NUI Galway President Dr James Browne, said: “This is an important development and I am delighted that NUI Galway has taken a leadership position nationally in promoting such an ethical investment policy, including fossil fuel divestment. I’d like to commend the students involved in CCAFS and the Students’ Union leadership who have highlighted an important global issue that impacts on climate change, social equity and a range of important ethical issues today. Their actions and advocacy demonstrate their commitment as global citizens who will shape our planet’s future. “
Should you be interested in finding out more about divestment at a local and national level, NUI Galway will be hosting the 3rd annual Climate Congress on Divestment and Sustainable Investment on Tuesday the 21st of March. Details for the Congress can be found below.
Pictured are (left to right): Jimmy McGovern (NUI Galway Students’ Union President); Hazel Wolstenholme (CCAFS); Dr James Browne (NUI Galway President); Colm Duffy Auditor CCAFS & NUIG Students’ Union Postgraduate Officer); Aoife Kervic (CCAFS); & Brendan Hallahan (CCAFS).
Event page: https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/nui-galway-climate-congress-divestment-and-sustainable-choices-tickets-32582584387?aff=escb&utm-medium=discovery&utm-campaign=social&utm-content=attendeeshare&utm-source=cp&utm-term=eventcard#tickets
NUI Galway Students’ Union Supports the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement (BDS)
NUI Galway Students’ Union has officially joined the international Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which calls for an academic, cultural and economic boycott of the state of Israel. The decision was taken by a referendum of NUI Galway students last month. The referendum, which was called by The Palestine Solidarity Society asked students whether or not they agreed with the motion: “That NUI Galway Students’ Union actively supports the campaign of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against the State of Israel”. 65% of voters supported the motion.
The BDS movement, called for by Palestinian civil society in 2005, advocates non-violent punitive measures against Israel until it complies with the precepts of international law towards Palestine. This consists of ending its occupation and colonisation of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall, recognising the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality, and respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN Resolution 194.
Sean Kearns, President of NUI Galway Students’ Union, said:
‘NUI Galway students have a long and proud history of fighting for societal change, both domestically and internationally, and this result is the latest example of that tradition. Alongside promoting awareness of the need for the broader BDS campaign, NUI Galway Students’ Union are currently working on developing a policy that will outline how they will be lobbying the university to comply with the BDS campaign.’
Fionnghuala Nic Roibeaird, Auditor of the NUI Galway Palestine Society, said:
‘We would like to thank all those who campaigned and voted for the motion. No doubt NUI Galway Students’ Union shall be just the first of many students’ unions in Ireland to join the BDS campaign, and we are confident that students in Ireland and elsewhere will not be silent on instances of international oppression in our own time’.