This petition goes beyond the original petition from the Williams Endowment Initiative by requesting that Williams commit to an 80% reduction of emissions from 1990 levels by 2050 and pledging to increase contributions to the Alumni Fund.
President Falk and the Board of Trustees,
Trustees Advisory Committee on Shareholder Responsibility
Executive Committee of the Society of Alumni
RE: Williams' Leadership on Climate Change
Williams has shown leadership on climate change through its commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions within the decade. The urgent challenges associated with climate change warrant increased leadership.
We who have signed this petition represent alumni from many decades, committed to addressing climate change. We earnestly ask Williams' leadership to move deliberately to effect the following:
** Commit to the 80% reduction in carbon emissions by 2050 as requested in the petition signed by over 1200 students, faculty and alumni.
** Divest the College's direct and indirect endowment holdings in the top 200 large fossil fuel companies by 2020 and find opportunities to invest in clean energy solutions.
In recognition of the potential expenses inherent in these measures, we commit to making contributions to the Alumni Fund of at least 10% greater than our previous gift to offset potential costs of reinvesting. We will encourage fellow alumni to do the same. We recognize the unfortunate paradox that larger financial yields at present may derive in part from investments in companies that threaten the future well-being of the planet and its inhabitants. This position is ultimately untenable as it makes the biosphere subordinate to the economy rather than the other way around.