Skip to main content

Royal Holloway divests from fossil fuels

Royal Holloway divests from fossil fuels

  • Date18 July 2023

Royal Holloway is divesting all fossil fuel companies from its investment portfolio following a review of its Statement of Investment Policy.

Reduction in fossil fuels.jpg

The policy has been updated in recognition of its commitment to environmental sustainability, social justice and addressing the climate emergency within its endowment investments. The new policy also has explicit exclusions on armaments, gambling, adult entertainment, and tobacco.

Royal Holloway did not previously have any investments in armament companies but did retain two legacy investments in the oil and gas sector: Royal Dutch Shell and Equinor.

After thorough consultation with students and staff, led by Royal Holloway’s Students’ Union and supported by members of the University’s Environmental Sustainability Working Group, and careful consideration from the University's Investment Sub Committee, Royal Holloway has sold these investments and now has zero exposure to organisations involved in the exploration, production, refining, storage and/or transportation of oil, gas and/or coal across its portfolio. Royal Holloway joins more than 100 UK universities in taking this step.

Royal Holloway recognises that the climate and ecological emergency is having severe impacts on people across the world, in particular communities in the Global South. A rapid and just energy transition away from fossil fuel dependence is necessary to create a secure, sustainable future for all. 

Maia Jarvis, President of Royal Holloway Students’ Union and member of the University's Investment Sub Committee, said: “I am thrilled that Royal Holloway is taking action to align the University’s investments with its institutional commitment to address the climate crisis.

“It is an incredibly exciting time for sustainability at Royal Holloway and this collaborative step between the Students’ Union, staff, and the University Council’s Investment Sub Committee is a true demonstration of community and values-led work.

“It has been incredibly rewarding organising and working with colleagues to conduct this review. I look forward to seeing the next steps the University and the Students’ Union will take together to ensure students are at heart of climate action.”

Professor Julie Sanders, Vice-Chancellor and Principal of Royal Holloway, added: “I am proud that we have become a University that invests in more environmentally sustainable companies. We recognise that the world faces a climate and ecological emergency, and we have a responsibility as educators to lead on environmental sustainability and make a positive change for the future.

“We all need to play our part by making conscious decisions to protect our climate and environment for future generations – ensuring we can reach a better, cleaner world for everyone to live in.”

To find out more about Royal Holloway’s commitment to environmental sustainability see its Sustainability Strategy.

Explore Royal Holloway

Get help paying for your studies at Royal Holloway through a range of scholarships and bursaries.

There are lots of exciting ways to get involved at Royal Holloway. Discover new interests and enjoy existing ones.

Heading to university is exciting. Finding the right place to live will get you off to a good start.

Whether you need support with your health or practical advice on budgeting or finding part-time work, we can help.

Discover more about our academic departments and schools.

Find out why Royal Holloway is in the top 25% of UK universities for research rated ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’.

Royal Holloway is a research intensive university and our academics collaborate across disciplines to achieve excellence.

Discover world-class research at Royal Holloway.

Discover more about who we are today, and our vision for the future.

Royal Holloway began as two pioneering colleges for the education of women in the 19th century, and their spirit lives on today.

We’ve played a role in thousands of careers, some of them particularly remarkable.

Find about our decision-making processes and the people who lead and manage Royal Holloway today.