Resolution Establishing a Sustainable Investments Task Force
May 5, 2013

WHEREAS, a group of Dickinson students known as "Reinvest Dickinson" has called for Dickinson to divest its endowment from the top 200 fossil fuel companies; and

WHEREAS, both the Committee on Investments and the college's administration have engaged in discussions with representatives of Reinvest Dickinson about divesting from fossil fuels; and

WHEREAS, divestment from fossil fuels is a complex undertaking, particularly for Dickinson, which is part of a group of 13 institutions that pool their endowments into a single common portfolio through the use of an investment consortium (Investure, LLC.); and

WHEREAS, Dickinson is a leader in environmental education and environmentally sustainable practices; and

WHEREAS, Dickinson seeks to deploy its resources in a sustainable manner which balances economic, social, and environmental outcomes (i.e. the "triple bottom line"); and

WHEREAS, any decision on the divestment issue will affect the entire Dickinson community; and

WHEREAS, the effects of divestment must be fully understood by all parties before any decision is made (including a decision not to divest); and

WHEREAS, Dickinson Student Senate passed a resolution on April 16, 2013 urging the Board of Trustees to establish "a special working group to be composed of trustees, students, staff, and faculty, and tasked with:

  • Managing the investigation - by parties on Dickinson's campus and off - of the merits and drawbacks of divestment from fossil fuels.
  • Coordinating a process of community conversation and education that offers all stakeholders and constituencies a chance at thoughtful, meaningful engagement with this issue.
  • Making a recommendation to the Investment Committee of the Board of Trustees on further action related to the question of divesting the endowment from fossil fuels"

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Board of Trustees of Dickinson College hereby establishes a Sustainable Investments Task Force to:

  • Investigate the advantages and disadvantages of fossil fuel divestment as it pertains specifically to Dickinson
  • Investigate the likely impacts of divestment on the fossil fuel industry, as well as the role which fossil fuels and renewable energy play in the global economy.
  • Coordinate a process of community conversation and education which allows for meaningful engagement by all Dickinson stakeholders,
  • Submit a recommendation to the Committee on Investments of the Board of Trustees on a course of action pertaining to the question of divestment from fossil fuels.

The Sustainable Investments Task Force shall be comprised of the following members, each of whom shall be appointed by the Chair of the Board of Trustees:

  • Two (2) Trustees, one of whom shall be designated by the Chair of the Board of Trustees to chair the task force
  • Two (2) members of Dickinson's faculty
  • Two (2) members of Dickinson's administration
  • Two (2) Dickinson students
  • One (1) member of Dickinson's non-exempt staff

At the discretion of the task force chair, additional members of the Dickinson administration shall be permitted to attend meetings of the task force, provide information and analysis, and engage in discussions. However, these additional members shall not be permitted to vote on matters before the task force.