University of Glasgow to divest fully from fossil fuel industry

first_imgThis represents 12% of the university’s endowment funds, worth around £153.9m as at 31 July 2013, the date of the last published accounts.The campaign to persuade the university to divest from fossil fuels has been led by GUCAS, and has lasted around a year.The university already bans directly held tobacco stocks from its portfolio, as these investments run entirely counter to its direct interests in research.David Newall, secretary of the University of Glasgow Court, said: “The university recognises the devastating impact climate change may have on our planet, and the need for the world to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels.“Over the coming years, we will steadily reduce our investment in the fossil fuel extraction industry, while also taking steps to reduce our carbon consumption.”Directly held stocks in the endowment fund portfolio as at 31 July 2013 included Shell, BP, Chevron, Statoil Holdings and BHP Billiton.Portfolio management is split between Schroders and Newton.The commitment to divest is subject to reassurance that the financial impact for the university will be acceptable, the detail of which will be monitored by the University Court.The decision to divest does not extend to the University of Glasgow Pension Scheme, run by separate pension fund trustees.Other UK universities are reportedly considering the issue of fossil fuel divestment within their endowment funds.Oxford University’s executive governing body is set to make a decision early next year.In the US, 13 universities, including Stanford, have now pledged to divest from the fossil fuel industry.Last month, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, whose endowment is worth $868m (€682m), announced its decision to divest from the industry.Meanwhile, a low-carbon energy system could free up trillions of dollars over the next 20 years to invest in better economic growth, according to two new reports from the Climate Policy Initiative.The reports found that moving to a low-carbon electricity system would bring the global economy around $1.8trn in financial savings between 2015 and 2035 because of significantly reduced operational costs associated with extracting and transporting coal and gas outweigh increased financing costs for renewable energy and losses in the value of existing fossil fuel assets.And changing from oil to low-carbon transport could increase global investment capacity by trillions or result in net costs, depending on policy choices.Governments own 50-70% of global oil, gas and coal resources, and collect taxes and royalties on the portion they do not own.However, governments also control much of the policy that could lead either to asset stranding (losses in the financial value of fossil fuel assets) or financial savings.And, says CPI, the right policies can maximise the financial benefits of a low-carbon transition. The University of Glasgow has become the first European university to commit to disinvesting fully from companies in the fossil fuel industry.The decision was taken by the university’s governing body, the University Court.It follows a consultation process by an independent working group taking evidence from the Glasgow University Climate Action Society (GUCAS) and the university investment committee.Full divestment will mean the reallocation of around £18m (€12.7m) worth of current investments over a 10-year period.last_img read more

Trojans clinch third straight NCAA title

first_imgFor the second year in a row junior Daniel Nguyen clinched the NCAA championship for USC, as the No. 2 Trojans claimed their third consecutive title in a 4-3 win against undefeated No. 1 Virginia.This was the second time USC had won three consecutive titles.Finishing strong · In a thrilling back-and-forth third set, junior Daniel Nguyen clinched USC’s win over top-seeded and undefeated Virginia in the NCAA title match. The win gave the Trojans their third consecutive national championship. – Dieuwertje Kast | Summer Trojan USC coach Peter Smith couldn’t have been more proud.“One word: history. I mean how many teams have won three in a row,” Smith said. “These boys did it. … It’s a very proud day to be a Trojan.”Disposing of its previous opponents handily, USC looked as if they might be unchallenged en route to yet another NCAA title.Within the first hour, the Trojans had secured the doubles point and were in command on five of the six courts during the first set of the singles matches.Freshman Emilio Gomez exerted his dominance on court five, blanking Justin Shane 6-0 in the first set and moving on to take a 5-3 edge in the second. Shane tried making a comeback in the second set, taking the ninth game of the set to deuce, but Gomez never wavered and was the first Trojan to secure a victory in singles play, giving USC a 2-0 lead in the match.Junior Steve Johnson was challenged by Virgina’s Michael Shabaz on court one. Tied at six apiece, Johnson used his signature serve to take control of the tiebreak to propel himself to a 8-6 (7-2) win after a grueling back-and-forth first set.“You’ve got to bring the fire on a day like today,” Johnson said.Johnson had a 5-3 edge in the second set, in the close, scrappy deuce-filled duel against Shabaz. But Johnson never looked back, earning the Trojans another point, winning 8-6, 6-3 to give USC a commanding 3-0 lead.But the Cavaliers refused to quit.Ngyuen was blanked 0-6 in the second set against Singh, but he kept his cool.“I was bummed, but just tried to stay focused and take it one point and a time and stay composed,” Nguyen said.On court two, senior Jaak Poldma defeated Virginia’s Alex Domijan in the first set. The co-captain, however, would fall in the second set and the deciding third set 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 allowing Domijan to clinch the first point of the day for the Cavaliers.After senior Peter Lucassen battled back to knot his score with Virginia’s Julen Uriguen at one set apiece, he eventually fell in the third set 2-6, 6-1, 3-6. This cut USC’s deficit to a single point at 3-2.Freshman Ray Sarmiento also won his first set, beating Virginia’s Jarmere Jenkins 6-3.The freshman, however, faltered in the second and third sets, allowing Jenkins to tie the score at three apiece, setting the stage for Nguyen.“You can’t worry about losing in that situation,” Smith said. “You’ve got to go for it.”Nguyen broke Singh’s serve to lead 4-2 in the third set after Singh double-faulted. Nguyen took it to four deuce points in the eighth game, when he fell 3-5.Nguyen was on serve when he fell 15-40 to Singh. Nguyen brought it back to deuce, but he lost the game.Singh was on serve when Nguyen went up 30-15, two points away from the national championship title. Singh prolonged USC’s win a bit longer, winning the second point to bring the score to 40-30.In one last point of beautiful footwork and ball placement, Nguyen did it again, beating Singh to clinch yet another NCAA title.“It’s definitely a dream come true. [In] last year’s [match] I didn’t realize I clinched, but this year I realized I was last match on. I literally just pushed myself mentally and physically,” said an emotional Nguyen.  “I believed in myself and my team.”last_img read more

Mixed bag for the Irish in Dubai

first_imgMcIlroy who leads the race to Dubai is 3 off the lead on 3 under with 5 to play while Lowry is 4 over after 13.Marcus Fraser , Ian Poulter , Andy Sullivan and Martin Kaymer share a 1 shot clubhouse lead on 6 under .last_img