Campus Climate Challenge

Divest Now

Community Highlights

In the five weeks since the Virginia March for Divestment and Virginia Power Shift (VAPS), there has been a monumental shift in Virginia campus activism, and an explosion of activity in the Virginia student divestment movement.

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            At Murray State University the Murray Environmental Student Society (M.E.S.S.) has been focusing on garnering support for the  establishment of  a Sustainable Projects Fund (SPF). This fund is often called a green fee by some campuses and it is a minimal fee of about $3-$5 that would come from student's tuition. The club frames this fee as giving up a Starbucks coffee once a semester. It is a small amount of money that could make instrumental changes for Murray State.

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721 VA > Fossil Fuels. VA BOV (Board of Visitors), Who's Side Are You On?

The youth of Virginia are ready to turn up. They are ready to bring it squarely to the jaw of the fossil fuel polluters. I know this because 350 students showed up in Fredericksburg, Virginia last weekend for Virginia Power Shift 2015. They chose to spend their Valentine’s Day weekend rallying for Global Divestment Day & building a loving movement, and that is why I know we will win.

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Growing up just outside of Houston, in a suburb containing the 6th largest refinery in the United States, the fossil fuel industry was all-encompassing in my childhood. From confusing the refineries’ smoke stacks for what I thought were “cloud-makers,” to knowing far too many family members - beside myself - with developed asthma, I was always peripherally aware of the fossil fuel industry, but never considered deeply what it meant to be raised in the center of an extractive economy.

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Adapted from a Community Power blog post drafted by Lee Samelson with content by John Farrell.

For the last three years, Community Power has been working to secure community control over our energy utilities. In October 2014, we took a big step in the right direction by forming the nation's first clean energy partnership, giving our city direct decision-making power in our relationship with our monopoly energy utilities. The partnership met for the first time last Wednesday. Our community coalition, including neighborhood groups, environmental justice organizations, local economy think-tanks, and youth climate organizations, including Grand Aspirations, an Energy Action Coalition partner, are now working to form a robust community stakeholder group to hold the process accountable and are advancing a 10-point work plan for what we can achieve in Minneapolis in the next 2 years.

How did it happen and can it happen elsewhere, too?

Watch this You Tube Video of John Farrell with Institute for Local Self-Reliance taking part in a panel "What the City of Minneapolis Clean Energy Partnership Represents" Wednesday, November 5, 2014 at the MnSEIA conference in Bloomington, MN.

Click here to read more.

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The Virginia Student Environmental Coalition (VSEC) just celebrated its first birthday. It was a raucous celebration where 60 students from across Virginia converged in Richmond to plan a future free of fossil fuels and make their voices heard in the halls of the Virginia’s capital. Their voices made it all the way to the Governor’s office.

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Young people across Kentucky know what is at stake if our communities and institutions don’t take sustainability seriously, our future. That is why we are united in the fight to protect our health, our communities, and our planet and it’s why we hosted a statewide day of action on November 20th.


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696 Today I had to choose between going to vote or $20 and to be honest, I hesitated.

Technically speaking my choice was actually between a mandatory event at my campus or going to vote, as both fall into my only 2 hour span of free time, but only one is going to charge me for lack of attendance.

I can practically feel your judgement leaking through the computer screen, so before you think too poorly of me rest assured that my desire for representation outweighed my desire for extra grocery money.

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