Georgetown University (GU) students are banding together under new organization GU Fossil Free to demand that the university divest from its current investments in fossil fuel and coal companies and to put a freeze on new investments in such companies for five years.
The group says it is appealing to the university's Catholic and Jesuit traditions of social justice and environmental stewardship.
"Fossil fuel companies are responsible for the deteriorating condition of our planet, they pose a threat to public heath, and they have a long track record of disregarding human rights," Sydney Browning, a student member of GU Fossil Free, said in a press release.
GU Fossil Free says GU's investments in fossil fuel companies "signifies complicity" in what the coalition believes is "one of the most profound injustices of our era."
Wednesday the group delivered a proposal to GU President John DeGioia's office, asking the administration and the Board of Trustees to "make substantial moves" toward divestment.
DeGioia is not in town, but the students left their proposal for his review.
"We're confident that he will receive and read our letter and proposal when he returns, and that we can start an open dialogue about how to move forward on this issue," Madeline Collins, a student member of GU Fossil Free, told Patch in a email.
GU confirmed that the President's Office received the letter from GU Fossil Fuel and they they would give it "careful consideration."
"We take these concerns seriously. In fact, that is precisely why last year we enhanced the Committee on Investments and Social Responsibility (CISR) with the ability to make recommendations about our investment practices," Stacy Kerr, a University spokeswoman said in an email to Patch.
"We are asking the CISR to give the proposal careful consideration at its upcoming meetings," Kerr added.
More about GU Fossil Free: www.facebook.com/GUFossilFree