Fossil Free UCL have stepped up their campaign…watch them mess up Michael Arthur’s commute
Over 50 protestors demanding UCL’s top brass pull the plug on college’s grubby investments in the fossil fuel industry blockaded a management meeting yesterday afternoon – by staging a ‘die-in’ on Tottenham Court Road. The protest, which saw “dead” students blocking the entrance to college’s conference centre at 188 TCR, meant the grey suits of the UCL Council were forced to wade through the crowd to get inside.
The die-in – which Fossil Free UCL say is the beginning of a “major escalation” of their campaign to have uni chiefs divest £14 million from the controversial industry – started at 3:30pm and lasted for an hour.
Chants included: “Council council council! Scum scum scum!”, “Council council council! Divest divest divest!” and “UCL, UCL, don’t put us in climate hell!”.
The event passed largely without incident – though students did clash with a rowdy Costa Coffee employee who objected to them lying across the entrance to his soulless coffee house.
One of the protestors, second year Guin Carter, said that the Provost had “brought shame upon UCL’s history of dissent and progressive politics.”
She says: “If UCL management choose not only to invest in climate-killing fossil fuels but refuse to negotiate with those demanding change, how else do they expect us to communicate with them?”
Glasgow became the first uni in Europe to divest from fossil fuels in October and since then campaigners at UCL have turned up the heat on greedy management.
Thursday’s die-in is unlikely to be the end of clashes between eco-warriors and the Provost and his cronies.
Fossil Free UCL say negotiations between the two have broken down after “broken promises” from management – which allegedly included a promise to funnel money into a specific ethical investment fund.