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York VC announces the university has divested from fossil fuels

Sustainability is central to his 10-year vision

In today's inaugural speech, York's Vice-Chancellor Professor Charlie Jeffery announced the university no longer holds investments in fossil fuel companies. The new VC "vowed" that sustainability had a place at the "heart of a 10-year vision". He referenced the global climate crisis briefly in his speech.

"We face a global climate emergency. We have brilliant expertise, including among our students, who are often passionate about tackling that emergency, and we have an obligation to act."

The divestment announcement follows on from YUSU declaring a "Climate and Ecological Emergency" back on the 27 September.

Both former and current YUSU Environment and Ethics Officers have been thanked after a long campaign to push for divestment from fossil fuels.

Other issues mentioned in the VC's speech included community, local collaboration and internationalism.

YUSU President Samara Jones commented to the university

"We are delighted that the University has listened to the voices of students and now divested. The VC's recognition that we face a climate emergency is a major step forward and we look forward to working with the University to develop an ambitious strategy."

The new VC also announced the University of York will produce its own plan to respond to the climate crisis. This includes harnessing "expertise and passion" in the area of climate change to produce a response.