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Students, Activists Protest Yale University Investment Policies

Dozens of Yale University students and activists staged a sit-in at the Yale Investments Office to protest the school’s investment in the fossil fuel industry.

The protest, which began on Friday afternoon, called on the school to end its investment practices that harm climate. The protestors also demanded from the university to cancel its “predatory investments” holding Puerto Rico’s debt.

“The funds for our education should not come from environmental destruction and predatory debt,” Martin Mann, a member of Fossil Free Yale and Yale Young Democratic Socialists of America, told Hartford Courant.

“These investments are immoral. They signal that the University sees no issue with the hypocrisy of supporting and profiting from fossil fuel extraction, climate injustice, and neo-colonial exploitation while priding itself in its climate science research and educationof social justice.”

According to Fossil Free Yale, a student organization on campus, the university’s two investment managers, Baupost and Cyrus Capital Partners, hold more than $1000 million in bonds issued by the Puerto Rico Sales Tax Financing Corporation.

The activists and student groups have been demanding Yale to waive off the debt Puerto Rico owes to the school.

The protest comes in the backdrop of various universities across the country divesting endowment from fossil fuel companies. Earlier this year, Seattle University announced its decision to divest its $230 million endowments in the next five years to address the climate change crisis. The university also set June 30, 2023 as the final deadline to  fully divest the endowment from fossil fuel reserve owing companies.

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