This is an exciting time for environmental and social change. With Bristol City Councils pledge to be carbon neutral by 2030, UWE is uniquely placed as a pioneer among other universities within a rapidly changing city that was recently Europe’s Green capital.
Opportunities arising from this shifting paradigm are great, and we should utilise them to their full potential within our university.
During my three year involvement with the Green Team I have helped organise several events and campaigns as well as workshops and talks. From many meetings with university staff and students I have learnt alot, and my experience has set me ready to affront these problems with greater confidence and knowledge.
My campaign focuses on the overlooked connection between money and climate change; banks and fossil fuels.
The university income of £271,3 Million; our tuition fees, onsite accomodation fees, funding grants, research grants, all the university money goes through several banks.
Most people think all our money is ‘kept safe’ by banks, when really they invest our money in all sorts of trades and industries which we may not support or even agree with, most are not transparent or traceable, let alone ethical; many are invested in tobacco, arms dealing and of course fossil fuels.
Fossil fuels are stranded assets. They are coming to the end of their lives and banks that invest in fossil fuels are betting on a losing horse, while contributing to destroying the planet.
It is the universities fiduciary duty to uphold financial policies which excludes banks tied to environmentally damaging industries, and includes banks actively investing in sustainable projects.
We as students have the power to instigate change within the university, and changing how our money is dealt with, what it funds and what it does not is a great impact to have for the future.
My aims are three:>
- Raise awareness
- Lobby the university to divest from the 'dirty' big five banks
- Create an ethical banking and investment policy to guide future finance
It is vital that to truly turn our backs on unsustainable living that we must take a good look at how our money is held and spent, and change to align with a more regenerative future.
If you believe we can use our money for global sustainability, then follow me.
To contact Curzio click here.