Harvard Students Sue University Over Refusal To Divest

A group of Harvard law, graduate and undergraduate students is suing to compel Harvard to withdraw its investments in oil, coal and natural gas. (Harvard Climate Justice Coalition v. Harvard)

On November 19, 2014, we sued the Harvard Corporation to compel it to withdraw its investments from fossil fuel companies. As seven Harvard students organized under the name “Harvard Climate Justice Coalition,” we allege that the Corporation’s funding of global warming harms its students and future generations, and that Harvard’s leaders have a duty to divest the university’s endowment from the reckless activities of the oil, gas, and coal industries.

We’re bringing this case by ourselves, without lawyers, because we believe that we have a responsibility to confront global warming. Climate change has arrived, wrecking the planet and posing serious dangers to the most vulnerable among us. Unless and until institutions like Harvard act to address the root causes of global warming, we will remain addicted to a system of energy production and economic injustice that guarantees catastrophe. Our university has a legal obligation — and, more importantly, a moral duty —to stop profiting from human suffering and environmental destruction. Our lawsuit simply asks Harvard to live up to its centuries-old promise to promote “the advancement of youth.”

Our case, Harvard Climate Justice Coalition v. President and Fellows of Harvard College, is currently in the Suffolk County Superior Court of Massachusetts. You can read our complaint (the summary of our claims) here. Please also consult our resources on the case for university divestment, the science of climate change, and some frequently asked questions about our case. Please feel free to contact us at harvardclimatejustice at gmail.com

The Complaint
The Evidence