May 18, 2015 / 3:51 PM / 4 years ago

Oxford University says will not invest in coal, tar sands companies

LONDON, May 18 (Reuters) - The University of Oxford will continue to avoid investments in companies involved in coal extraction and tar sands, the university’s highest decision-making body said on Monday.

The university's funds - the Oxford Endowment Fund and the Oxford Capital Fund - have 2 billion pounds ($3.1 billion) of assets under management, and none of it is currently invested in coal or tar sands, the university said in a statement. (ouem.co.uk/)

“Our investment managers take a long-term view and take into account global risks, including climate change, when considering what investments to make,” said Oxford University Vice-Chancellor Professor Andrew Hamilton.

A student union resolution in October called on the council to drop its shares in coal and tar sands companies and move its investments towards low-carbon industries.

The university was supposed to make a decision on fossil fuel divestment in March but the University Council postponed it to have more time to consider “serious issues”.

Around 200 institutions globally, with a combined asset size of over $50 billion, have committed to move out of the fossil fuel industry, including the Rockefeller Brothers Foundation, Church of England, the British Medical Association, Stanford University and the World Council of Churches. ($1 = 0.6382 pounds) (Reporting by Nina Chestney and Simon Jessop; Editing by Steve Slater)

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