Dear SRIAC: Response to their Letter

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by the REInvestment Campaign

Dear members of the Socially Responsible Investment Advisory Committee (SRIAC) and the Earlham community;

On December 6, 2013, the SRIAC formally responded to REInvestment’s proposal for divestment from coal and other fossil fuels. We of REInvestment appreciate SRIAC’s sustained interest in our group and our request. We are encouraged by SRIAC’s acknowledgement of the harm that fossil fu- els cause to people and the planet, and we certainly agree that Earlham should continue to work towards reducing our dependence on fossil fuels.

However, after months of conversation emphasizing the importance of environmental sustainability in Earlham’s future, the influence of Friends’ testimony for witness and integrity, and the irrevocable damage caused by fossil fuel extraction, we are disappointed that SRIAC’s recommended action does not acknowledge the immediacy of the climate crisis.

It is true that Earlham’s mission in an academic one. That said, as part of our mission of education we are guided by our strong Quaker principles. We have a moral imperative to act in accordance with these principles, which “are rooted in a commitment to caring for the world we inhabit, improving humansociety… affirming the equality of all persons, and maintaining high ethical standards of personal conduct” (Earlham College Principles & Practices).

Environmental issues are arguably among the most pressing concerns of our time. At a Quaker institution that purports to look towards the future, engage with global issues, concern itself with social justice, and hold itself to a high standard of integrity, we must take action now.

REInvestment will continue to push for responsible investments at Earlham. We are looking forward to the future.

Sincerely,
The Responsible Energy Investment Campaign

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