“…. Coal is the single greatest threat to civilization and all life on our planet. …the dirtiest trick that governments play on their citizens is that they are working for “clean coal.” “The trains carrying coal to power plants are death trains. Coal-fired power plants are factories of death.” — James Hansen, arrested on this day in 2009 during a protest against mountaintop removal mining at Massey Energy Company. Painting by Robert Shetterly from Americans Who Tell the Truth (http://bit.ly/MCWsgP). Teaching resources on coal: http://bit.ly/LP6vB8
From “Americans Who Tell the Truth”
The corporate leaders of the U.S. are engineering a massive upwards redistribution of wealth, from the poor to the 1% — and the fossil fuel industry is at the center of it. Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett just awarded Royal Dutch Shell $1.65 billion in tax credits and zero liability for environmental impacts to build an ethane processing plant in western PA. All in the name of job creation. Interestingly, Corbett also seems to think that cutting $1 billion from public education won’t have a negative impact on jobs.
Fossil fuel exploitation, not education — this is the nationwide mantra for 2012 and beyond. The political system is not offering any solutions. Institutions of conscience must do everything they can to confront the fossil fuel industry. Divest now!
This is Swarthmore’s alumni weekend! Mountain Justice is spending the weekend educating alumni about Swarthmore’s unjust investments, our efforts to expose them, and why divestment is an effective step toward environmental justice.
If you are an alumnus visiting this site in response to our flyering, THANK YOU! Please look around the site. To start with, this page explains what divestment is, and why it works. Here’s an op-ed by one of our members that talks about mountaintop removal and the Appalachian communities that originally inspired us to begin this campaign. And here’s a fun video that we made to counteract coal industry propaganda. There’s a lot of other good stuff, too. You might be interested in Swarthmore President Rebecca Chopp’s response to our divestment proposal, and our ensuing response to her.
We spent the last year raising awareness and support among students on campus. Unfortunately, though we have some support among administrators, the Board of Managers has not yet committed to divestment. That’s why alumni outreach is a priority for this summer and next year. Swarthmore’s administrators listen to you alums way more than us students — let’s work together to make divestment happen!
Contact the alumni outreach team at SwarthmoreMJ@gmail.com to get involved or add your name to a statement of support.