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強烈呼籲全港大學去碳撤資!

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強烈呼籲全港大學去碳撤資!

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香港大學,去碳撤資,義不容辭!

今年5月5至13日被定為「全球去碳撤資總動員」(Global Divestment Mobilization)活動的日子。5月7日星期日,「350香港」的一眾成員在一天之內前往香港5間大學,並進行了橫額展示和高呼口號的公民行動。以下是當天所拍的照片。

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中文大學,去碳撤資,義不容辭!

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理工大學,去碳撤資,義不容辭!

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城市大學,去碳撤資,義不容辭!

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浸會大學,去碳撤資,義不容辭!

什麼是「去碳撤資」?讓我在此作簡單的解釋。

大家是否知道,自有準確氣候紀錄的近150年以來,地球最熱的十五年都出現在 1998年之後?而最熱的一年就是去年?第二則是前年?而第三年則是大前年?此外,大家可知北冰洋海冰融化的速度已經遠超科學家的預期,去年的融化更是破了歷來的紀錄?而澳洲大堡礁的珊瑚,已有三分之二因為水溫上升和海水酸化而出現白化和死亡,從而嚴重影響海洋的生態?

聯合國巴黎氣候峰會明確指出,要阻止巨大災難的發生,我們必須將全球的升溫限制在攝氏2度之內。但科學家的計算顯示,如果我們繼續今天的經濟發展模式,至本世紀下半葉,全球的升溫將達5、6度之多,而陸地上的冰雪融化流入海中,會令全球的海平面上升達一米或更多。

情況已經清楚不過,在全球暖化氣候變遷的巨大災難之前,我們這一代是仍然有機會力挽狂瀾的最後一代!如果我們不能盡快扭轉現今的發展趨勢,我們將要面對的,是一個充滿災難、紛亂甚至戰爭的恐怖世界。

如何力挽狂瀾?就是盡快停止化石燃料的使用,從而停止二氣化碳的工業排放(現今的排放量是每年超過三百億噸)。作為平民百姓,除了敦促政府透過政策以「去碳」外(辦法當然是以太陽能、風能等「可再生能源」取代煤、石油和天然氣),我們還應該身體力行,不要再將金錢投資在化石燃料產業之上。簡單的邏輯是,我們繼續買煤炭、石油和天然氣的股票或相關投資產品的話,便等於合資買一條繩以齊齊上吊自殺。
早於前年( 2015)四月,筆者已經去信給香港大學校長馬菲森、中文大學校長沈祖堯、以及兩所大學的畢業生評議會,促請他們將兩所大學的資金從化石燃料企業撤走。很可惜,兩所大學皆未有作出積極回應。

同年九月,我與朋友正式成立了關注全球暖化的組織「350香港」,並於巴黎氣候峰會的前夕(11月29日)舉辦了香港歷來第一次「氣候大遊行」(Youtube短片 )。去年七月和今年初,我們先後提出了「立法會選舉」和「特首選舉」的「氣候挑戰」。

今年四月初,我寄出了27封掛號信件,對象是香港九間大學的校長、校務委員會主席、以及學生會會長,目的是要求全港大學「去碳撤資」。迄今為止,我們已收到香港大學、中文大學、理工大學和教育大學的回覆,其中以馬菲森教授和沈祖堯教授的親自回答最令人鼓舞。兩人皆謂大學當局正認真考慮「去碳撤資」的可能性。

茲附上致香港大學的有關信件,懇請各位花點時間閱讀,以了解我們必須努力的方向。如想加入我們的行列,請發電郵致[email protected] 與我們聯絡。

To: Professor the Hon. Arthur K.C. Li, Council Chairman, The University of Hong Kong
Professor Peter Mathieson, Vice-Chancellor and President, The University of Hong Kong

Dear _______________ ,

A Call for the Divestment of All Funds
from the Fossil Fuel Industry by All Universities in Hong Kong

First let me introduce myself. My name is LEE Wai-choi, Eddy. I am the co-founder and convenor of an organization called 350HK (350hk.org) committed to the fighting of the climate crisis. I am writing to call for the divestment of all funds from the fossil fuel Industry by all universities in Hong Kong.

Universities are not just institutions of higher education. They embody the hope of our society. And yet catastrophic climate change resulting from global warming is fast destroying this hope for all societies on Earth. As global warming is caused by carbon dioxide produced by the burning of fossil fuel (coal, oil and gas), we at 350HK would like to sincerely suggest that The University of Hong Kong should divest all her funds from the fossil fuel industry.

The divestment timeframe could be from one year to as many as five years. The important thing is not to terminate all such investments immediately, but to send out a loud and clear message to the society at large that such investments amount to approving and encouraging the inflicting of pain and suffering to humankind as well as the non-human world via climate disasters. Divestment is about doing the right thing, and hence is largely a moral decision. It is well known that most universities of the world have a strict rule against investment in gambling and tobacco industry. It is high time fossil fuel be added to this list, as the damage they are bringing to our world is incomparably larger.

The Global Divestment Campaign was first launched by an organization called “350.org” about five years ago. Realizing the severity and urgency of the climate crisis, many top universities have since responded to this call, including Stanford University and Syracuse University in the US, and Oxford University, SOAS London University and Glasgow University in the UK. Other institutions committed to divestment include faith-based organizations like the World Council of Churches and philanthropic organizations like the Rockefeller Brothers Fund. A list of such organizations could be found from the website: https://gofossilfree.org/commitments/.

From a purely investment point of view, fossil fuel is deemed by many financial experts to be a “sunset industry”, and hence not a good investment choice. If the world is to stay within the safety limit of “2 degrees temperature rise” as agreed by the 2015 Paris Climate Conference, many assets of the industry will become “stranded assets”, with their value plummeting to near zero. Renewable energy like solar and wind with no carbon emission will be the future industry of choice.

The period from 5th to 13th May this year has been designated the Global Divestment Mobilization (GDM) week (https://globaldivestmentmobilisation.org/ ). While we understand the time is too short for any firm commitment to be made by your university before that time, we would appreciate it very much if you could advise us whether your university will put divestment on her agenda in the near future, and if yes, what tentative roadmap and timetable will be adopted. In case the answer to the above question is in the negative (i.e. no divestment would be contemplated in the near- and mid-term future), we would also appreciate it if you could explain to us what are the difficulties involved.

Please note that a letter similar to this one is being sent to all other eight universities in Hong Kong, and all replies will be made known to the public during the GDM week. A similarly worded letter has also been sent to the Student Unions of all universities. University students will be actively involved in this campaign, for clearly their future is at stake.

For your reference, further information on the dire situation we are in could be found in Wikipedia under the headings “Effects of Global Warming” , “Abrupt Climate Change”, “Arctic Methane Emissions”, “Ocean Acidification”, “Coral Bleaching” and “Holocene Extinction” etc.

We look forward to your positive reply. For any questions, please feel free to contact me at 9738 1551 or [email protected].

With Best Regards,

Dr. Eddy Lee Wai-choi
Co-Founder and Convenor,
350HK
3rd April 2017

致 香港大學學生會會長:

強烈呼籲全港大學「去碳撤資」

你好!我是李偉才,筆名李逆熵,是環保組織「350香港」的創辦人兼召集人。這個組織的宗旨,是透過公民行動以對抗全球暖化危機。這次至函,是懇切呼籲全港的大學生團結一致,督促母校盡快「去碳撤資」(divest from fossil fuel industries)。為此,這封信也同時寄給了本港其餘八間大學的學生會。

眾所周知,全球暖化危機是人類現今面對最嚴峻的挑戰。如果我們無法有效地應對這項挑戰,我們所致力追求的人權、自由、民主、法治、社會公義、經濟發展、國際和平等等理想,都會成為泡影。自然生態環境的迅速崩壞和資源的短缺(包括糧食和淡水資源短缺),將導致日益惡化的難民潮和國際軍事衝突。2015的聯合國「巴黎氣候峰會」明確指出,要阻止巨大災難的發生,我們必須將全球升溫(自十九世紀中葉起計)控制在攝氏2度甚至 1.5度之內,而惟一的方法,是盡快以沒有二氧化碳排放的「可再生能源」,取代煤、石油和天然氣等「化石燃料」。按照科學家的計算,能夠力挽狂瀾的「機會窗口」,不會超過15年。

情況已經十分清楚,我們繼續投資在化石燃料產業之上,便等於眾籌買繩來集體上吊。約5年前,位於美國的「350.org」(https://350.org/)便已發起了一個全球性的「撤資運動」(divestment campaign)。大學是社會的良知和思想先鋒,所謂「先天下之憂而憂」,在這方面當然責無旁貸。為此,我們已於本月3號去函全港九所大學的校長和校委會主席,強烈呼籲他們響應這項運動。函件樣式見於附錄。

「撤資」的決定固然要由校方(校委會及管理層)作出,但大學的真正主體是學生,有了學生的推動,事情必然事半而功倍。我們在此懇切建議, 貴會成立一個「大學去碳撤資關注組」,並主動要求校方作出「撤資」的決定。有關的背景資料(包括其他大學的撤資狀況),可參閱《維基百科》中的 “fossil fuel divestment” 條目。

如想進一步了解敝會的活動,歡迎 閣下與其他學生會執委前往敝會的網址面書瀏覽。如有任何查詢或有志加入我們的行列,請隨時與本會([email protected] )或本人(電話:9738 1551;電郵:[email protected] )聯絡。

祝 學業進步、視野高升!

李偉才「350香港」創辦人暨召集人(香港大學物理系學士,澳洲新南威爾斯大學博士)
2017年 4月 5日

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