Phi Beta Cons

Harvard Students: Divest from Energy

We read in this piece on Campus Reform that some Harvard students are demanding that the university divest ownership in energy stocks because the continuing production and use of fossil fuels threatens to kill millions if not billions of people. Evidently, those students do not understand how equity markets work. If Harvard sells, someone else buys the shares at the market price. The companies are not financially hurt by the trading of their stock and are not going to stop producing fuels that virtually everyone needs and wants. I wrote about this silliness recently on Minding the Campus.

The students could move out of their fossil-fuel-heated dorms and apartments and camp out in the winter weather of Cambridge. Doing that would have just as much impact on the environment as their divestment demands.

George Leef — George Leef is the director of research for the John William Pope Center for Higher Education Policy.

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