Editorial: Don’t Let Oil Spoil Seattle U

If Seattle University is truly invested in its Jesuit values, then it’s time to divest.

The fossil fuel divestment movement calls for universities to eliminate their stock in fossil fuel companies on a moral basis.

As the Fossil Free organization declares on its website, “It’s wrong to profit from wrecking the climate.”

Some say that divestment is unrealistic because of the economic burden it creates. However, given the tenuous state of fossil fuel and coal supplies, these extremely profitable stocks are also some of the most risky. Clean energy, however, is an up-and-coming industry that could see tremendous growth in the coming years.

More important than the financial concern, however, is the threat that investment in fossil fuels poses to the school’s core values. If Seattle U truly seeks to empower leaders for a just and humane world, then certainly we have a responsibility towards the environment. It’s all well and good to preach about social justice, but when push comes to shove, we need to be willing to make good on the values we profess—or else, what are they good for?

Divestment simply makes sense for Seattle U. As a globally engaged campus in one of the greenest cities in the United States, continuing to invest in fossil fuel companies would be nothing short of hypocrisy.

When it comes down to it, you can’t put a price on the health of the planet. The administration’s response to the upcoming divestment rally will reveal how committed we really are to creating a just and humane world.