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May 17, 2013

Fossil fuel divestment debate heats up at US college

Conservatives say environmental activism at Swarthmore College is suppressing speech.

Student Testimony at Swarthmore Board Meeting [Screenshot from YouTube]


Activists fighting climate change have taken the battle against fossil fuels to US university campuses. But conservatives are targeting one liberal arts college for what they say is suppression of free speech, after students disrupted a board meeting on campus. 
Student activists at Swarthmore College took over an open board meeting, which was held on May 4 to discuss calls to divest the school's $1.5 billion financial endowment from fossil fuel companies. The college says divesting flouts its responsibility to maximise investments that fund students' education, including financial aid. 

Video of the student protest, which addressed a number of social issues on campus in addition to divestment, circulated online: