A faculty panel has been established to provide impartial scholarly advice as the University works to develop and implement its dissociation process to advance action on climate change.
Last May, Princeton’s Board of Trustees established an administrative process for dissociating from companies engaged in climate disinformation campaigns or that are involved in the thermal coal and tar sands segments of the fossil fuel industry, unless they prove able to meet a rigorous standard for greenhouse gas emissions.
The new faculty panel includes professors with expertise in fields including environmental studies, ethics, economics, public policy and engineering. The group will be led by Anu Ramaswami, the Sanjay Swani '87 Professor of India Studies and chair of the Chadha Center for Global India. Ramaswami is also a professor of civil and environmental engineering, the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies (PIIRS), and the High Meadows Environmental Institute (HMEI).
The panel was announced at the Council of the Princeton University Community (CPUC) meeting on Sept. 20.
The faculty group may draw on additional expertise within and beyond the University community to inform its research. The group was charged with submitting a public written report by the end of the academic year. An administrative committee will use the panel’s findings to propose to the Board of Trustees a set of actionable criteria for dissociation and a process for implementing them, now and in the future.
On campus, Princeton is committed to achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2046, which is the University’s 300th anniversary. The University’s Sustainability Action Plan, adopted by the University in April 2019, sets bold targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and outlines innovative strategies to engage all faculty, staff and students in creating a sustainable campus and future. Through this process, Princeton is discovering and modeling best practices and innovations that can be scaled for the campus, the community and the world.
Over the past half century, Princeton has led environmental research supporting the urgent need for climate action and offering clean energy solutions.