And… we’re off!
The Fossil Free USC campaign kicked off last month at O’week with the launch of our petition. The petition is opened to all students, staff, alumni and members of the community, and can be shared with anyone who supports the campaign.
We’ve also made contact with the Vice-Chancellor’s Office to request a meeting and discuss how other universities in Australia and worldwide have successfully divested from fossil fuels. The response we received indicated that USC does not directly invest in companies associated with fossil fuel, that the majority of USC’s investments are held with the Queensland Treasury Corporation (QTC), and that the remainder is held with the four large banks in Australia.
Clearly, we remain unconvinced about the nature of USC’s investments. With investments held with the QTC, we suspect USC is investing indirectly in the fossil fuel sector via QTC’s benchmark bonds, as these bonds may include corporate bonds issued by fossil fuel companies.
We need more details, so we’ve requested a meeting with the Chief Operating Officer to discuss further.
Two of our members are attending the National Fossil Free Convergence in Katoomba this weekend. They’ll get to meet people from other universities and communities across the country, connect with them and learn from them.
The program is full of good stuff, with experienced national and international speakers and a heap of skills-based workshops. Apart from meeting awesome like-minded people and building our network, we know the experience will help Fossil Free USC kick off on the next stage of the campaign.
We’d like to thank the USC Student Guild for partly funding our travel costs for this opportunity.
- We’re planning to hold an information session and/or workshop in the next few months to raise awareness about the issue on campus and build our USC network.
- There’s also the Global Divestment Mobilisation coming up early May, and we’ll be aiming to take part in this global movement in one way or another.
- We’re hoping to build the strength of our team in number, and will be recruiting and coaching new members as we go.
- We’ll also continue to promote our campaign and get signatures for our petition at every occasion we get. We’ll be at each USC Market Day this semester – come and say hello!
We’ll make sure to give you an update on the learnings and experience our two representatives gain from the Convergence, and share it all with you here!