AS proposes new investment plan

A proposal to pull student government investments from fossil fuel companies was presented for feedback during a Chico State Board of Directors meeting Monday afternoon.

The Associated Students, the student government at Chico State, has invested $271,000 in mutual funds with the University Foundation, a nonprofit organization that accepts donations for the university.

Exxon-Mobil and ConocoPhillips are among the corporations that A.S. money has invested in, according to an endowment report. Both are among the top 10 fossil fuel companies in the world, according to 350.org, a website that supports nationwide fossil fuel divestment by colleges and universities.

The Environmental Affairs Council, an A.S. government body, is asking the University Foundation to commit to a 7-year divestment of funding from top 200 publicly traded non-renewable energy companies.

Lori Hoffman, Chico State’s vice president for business and finance, contributed most of the feedback to the proposal.

Pulling investments from these companies would not prevent them from reinvesting in fossil fuels, Hoffman said.

Investment returns are also likely to decrease with divestment, Hoffman said in a previous interview with The Orion.

Most of the foundation’s returns and endowments are used to fund student scholarships.

Hoffman recommended pulling all of A.S.’s endowment money out of the foundation.

In a student government meeting earlier that afternoon, Haley she was hoping student government and the university could collaborate to make divestment a reality.

“We don’t want to further a divorce between A.S. and the university,” Haley said.

Once a final version of the proposal is drafted, Haley said she plans to present it to the University Foundation’s investment committee for approval.

 

Mozes Zarate can be reached at [email protected] or @mzarate139 on Twitter.