By A.J. Higgins
Maine Public news story
Four years ago, Unity College became the first U.S. college to eliminate fossil fuels from its international investment portfolio. Now, Unity College President Dr. Melik Peter Khoury says the central Maine school is redoubling its efforts to create a “net-zero” campus and spread its message of energy sustainability to other higher education institutions.
“I think what Unity College allowed many institutions to do is realize that it was possible — until then there were many conversations, but no institution actually took the plunge,” he says.
Khoury says Unity College’s concern over climate change and clean energy investment has spread to other institutions, which collectively have exceeded $5.2 trillion in assets diverted from fossil fuel production.
“We’re very proud to say that four years later, while we continue to be the first, like many firsts, it was the right thing to do,” Khoury said. “We do not regret it and as a result our portfolio did not suffer because of it. In some ways, we received some donations in direct response to our decision and the institution is better for it.”
Khoury says Unity College is proud to have blazed an investment trail that places a priority on climate change data and fiduciary responsibility.