19 Students Arrested by Yale Police at Fossil Fuel Divestment Sit-In
Hannah Nesser is a junior at Yale College studying environmental engineering and organizing with Fossil Free Yale.
Nineteen Yale students were arrested by Yale police yesterday following a day-long sit-in that called for the university to reopen the conversation on fossil fuel divestment. Yale is one of the first schools where a fossil fuel divestment action has led to arrest.
Forty-eight students peacefully entered Woodbridge Hall, Yale’s main administrative building, at 9 a.m. yesterday. Within minutes of their arrival, Yale President Peter Salovey addressed the students, informing them of the administrative channels that exist for students interested in pursuing divestment. Afterward, students provided flowers to the administrative staff and a thank you letter to Salovey. Then, students peacefully and quietly sat in the building.
Students held the sit-in to call on the Yale to reopen the conversation on fossil fuel divestment. The sit-in follows a two year effort by student group Fossil Free Yale to work with the administration to divest the university’s endowment from fossil fuels. During this period, Fossil Free Yale worked through the same administrative channels that Salovey referenced when he addressed students yesterday morning.
In August 2014, Yale refused to divest, announcing instead a series of sustainability initiatives. Fossil Free Yale continued to attempt to work with the administration to achieve divestment, arguing that sustainability is unable to address the social injustices of fossil fuel extraction and burning. The university has not responded to these claims, and Fossil Free Yale held this sit-in to hold Yale decision-makers responsible for open and honest engagement with students.
At 5 p.m., Woodbridge Hall closed and Yale police arrested 19 students who refused to leave the building until the administration agreed to continue the conversation on fossil fuel divestment. The arrests, willing and peaceful, followed the university’s failure to respond to students.
“Yale would rather arrest its students than re-engage in the conversation” said Fossil Free Yale Project Manager Mitch Barrows.
During the arrests, 160 students gathered on Beinecke Plaza. Students told the story of Fossil Free Yale and Blue Feather Drum Group, a Native American performance group, performed and discussed the links between the fossil fuel industry and marginalized communities. More than 125 students joined hands and encircled Woodbridge Hall. Together, they chanted, "Students united will never be divided.”
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
A coalition of conservation groups and others announced Thursday that a historic number of comments and petitions of support have been submitted to the U.S. Department of the Interior in support of Bears Ears National Monument. Despite the entirely inadequate 15-day comment period ending on May 26, more than 685,000 comments in support of Bears Ears National Monument have been collected.
By Lena Moffitt
An oil tanker in Mead, Colorado exploded, killing one and injuring three on Thursday. Authorities are continuing to investigate the cause of the explosion.
In an unusual procedural move, the American Petroleum Institute (API) and American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers filed motions Thursday requesting the court's permission to withdraw from the Juliana v. US climate lawsuit, brought by 21 young people. The associations are following the lead of the National Association of Manufacturers, who filed a similar motion to withdraw on May 22.
Twenty-two GOP senators sent a letter Thursday urging Donald Trump to pull out of the Paris agreement. They argued remaining in the deal could "upend" the administration's ability "to fulfill its goal of rescinding the Clean Power Plan."
By Cheryl Johncox
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) rejected on Thursday Energy Transfer Partners' request to resume horizontal directional drilling at two sites for its Rover fracked gas pipeline. This rejection comes after numerous leaks into Ohio's wetlands, and Clean Air and Clean Water act violations. FERC has halted the process at only eight locations of the 32 where drilling is taking place under Ohio's wetlands and streams.
By Nadia Prupis
A majority of people in eight countries say they are ready to change their lifestyles if it would prevent climate catastrophe, a survey on global threats released Wednesday found.
Bill Maher is sick of billionaires' obsession with Mars, more like "Mars-a-Lago," he said.
In a new animation produced by ATTN:, the popular talk show host of Real Time, discusses the perils of our planet, including how "climate change is killing us."