Where we’re at Keep it in the ground The Guardian Com

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Where we’re at


Alan Rusbridger <info@mail.theguardian.com> Unsubscribe

1:42 AM (7 hours ago)

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I’ve emailed you a few times recently asking for help with the Guardian’s Keep it in the Ground campaign, and want to take a moment to both thank you for your support and provide you an update on where we’re at.

The campaign team is currently hard at work producing the features we’ll launch later this week, addressed to the Gates Foundation. I’m headed to the Guardian’s office in New York, speaking to media about the campaign and following up on several Keep it in the Ground meetings, some of them confidential at the moment.

In the meantime, here are some highlights since the end of last week. I hope you’ll recognise that the campaign is growing momentum and support.

On Saturday we published a special edition of the Guardian featuring twenty-four moving letters written by readers to the Wellcome Trust. The letters are incredibly impressive and written by a wide range of people around the world. Do, please, read them and share them if you haven’t already. The letters inspired dozens of you to write your own this weekend. We’ll be sending them directly to Wellcome Trust board members this week.

Yesterday we reported that UK poet laureate Sir Andrew Motion and more than a dozen authors and judges honoured by the Wellcome book prize are calling on the Trust to divest from fossil fuels. Motion told the Guardian’s Head of Environment, Damian Carrington, “The Wellcome Trust does magnificent work in all sorts of ways, but its investment in fossil fuels contradicts many of its own policies. By divesting from fossil fuels it would show leadership in keeping with its reputation and ideals.” Three of the authors on this year’s shortlist of six for the prestigious prize have said they favour the trust divesting.

Our investigative reporting has also begun to bear fruit. By digging into fossil fuel company lobbying in Brussels, our Europe environment correspondent Arthur Neslen, discovered that Shell was apparently very successful at influencing the EU’s key energy and climate targets that were agreed by European governments last year. There is plenty more in that vein to come.

Newspapers, broadcasters and magazines across India, Europe and the US have been picking up on the campaign. There was a good piece of reporting in the Financial Times – ‘Prince Charles shuns fossil fuel investments’ – which includes the campaign and indicates the Guardian is in growing company:

“In the UK, divestment plans have been announced by the University of Glasgow, the British Medical Association, SOAS, University of London, and the publishers of The Guardian newspaper, which has launched its own anti- fossil fuel campaign: Keep it in the ground. Several other institutions and individuals have also decided to abandon such assets, the FT has learnt, including the heir to the throne. Prince Charles, a vocal climate action champion, does not comment publicly on his personal financial dealings. But sources at Buckingham Palace confirmed that ‘his private investments and his charitable foundation do not have any fossil fuel holdings’.

What next? As you’ve seen, we’ve devoted quite a bit of our time and attention of late to the Wellcome Trust. Starting later this week the campaign team will turn its focus to the Gates Foundation. If you’re one of the almost 1,000 members of the scientific community who has provided us with a statement of support, I can assure you that we’ll be in touch.

If you have any questions or concerns, please respond to this email or write to my team at keep.it@theguardian.com.

Very best wishes,

Alan Rusbridger, Editor in chief of the Guardian, and the team — Amanda, James, Emma, Mark, Sonia, Natalie, Damian, Fran, Felicity, Suzanne, Simon, Duncan, Terry, Jennifer, Adam, Nabeelah, Harry, Laura, Aron, Alex, Georgia, Karl, Dominic, Lilah, Damien, Wolfgang, Jo, Helen, James, Alice

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