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Georgetown University will divest its endowment from fossil fuel companies, marking a huge win for climate change activists and the planet. Currently, less than 5 percent of the university’s $1.9 billion endowment is invested in fossil fuel companies, an official told the student newspaper The Hoya.

The announcement comes after a sustained, student-led campaign calling for divestment. “This decision comes after eight years of dedicated campaigning from GU Fossil Free,” says the student group in a statement, “our members, past and present, could not be more proud.” 

The university board decision also came on the same day the Georgetown University Student Association voted to support divestment within four years; it passed by 90 percent on Thursday. 

Here’s the new policy: “The university will continue to make investments that target a market rate of return in renewable energy, energy efficiency and related areas while freezing new endowment investments in companies or funds whose primary business is the exploration or extraction of fossil fuels. Georgetown will divest from public securities of fossil fuel companies within the next five years and divest from existing private investments in those companies over the next 10 years.” 

The win inspired climate-conscious groups at nearby schools. Student groups at American University and George Washington University are also trying to get their schools to divest from fossil fuels. “Congratulations to GU Fossil Free. American University, we can’t let them beat us in everything… let’s follow suit?” tweets Fossil Free AU. 

Climate activists at GWU, meanwhile, have encountered obstacles as they try to get their university to divest. Video shows campus police pushing a Sunrise organizer down a flight of stairs during a recent action. The officer has since been placed on administrative leave

FYI: D.C. scrubbed its pension fund of fossil fuel firms in 2016—Amanda Michelle Gomez (tips? Email  

CITY DESK LINKS, by Amanda Michelle Gomez:

  • As part of her housing development goal—that is, adding 36,000 units to D.C. by 2025—Mayor Muriel Bowser wants to end “outdated” urban renewal plans in Shaw and downtown D.C. neighborhoods. [BisNow

  • D.C. police officer who fist bumped a member of the extremist white nationalist group Proud Boys did not face any discipline. [DCist]

  • Blocked hydrant delays firefighters’ response to fire that displaces 21 people in Fort Dupont neighborhood. [WTOP]

  • Metro to remake its headquarters, hopes to “bring new life to solemn Judiciary Square.” [Post]   

LOOSE LIPS LINKS, by Mitch Ryals (tips?

  • Mayor Muriel Bowser joined Mike Bloomberg in Virginia last night at a campaign event crashed by gun rights activists. [Twitter]

  • Jack Evans sightings at the Dupont Circle Farmers Market, where he was collecting signatures to get his name on the ballot. [Twitter, Twitter]

  • ICYMI: Former D.C. employee alleges shoddy security in D.C. government buildings. The security company’s owner contributed money to local pols. [WCP, Post]

  • Are charter school networks in D.C. getting too big? [Post]

YOUNG & HUNGRY LINKS, by Laura Hayes (tips?

  • AOC could consider trying out our Asian supermarkets. [Post]

  • New words to add to your foodie vocabulary. [Eater]

  • Where to avoid Valentine’s Day, including Georgetown’s cat cafe. [Washingtonian]

ARTS LINKS, by Kayla Randall (tips?

  • Silent Sky at Ford’s Theatre is a galactic treat. [WCP]

  • The Mexical Cultural Institute’s Mexicalidadpresents design work as a platform for change. [WCP]

  • A National Gallery of Art tour helps people with memory loss and their caregivers enjoy the artwork. [DCist]

SPORTS LINKS, by Kelyn Soong (tips?

  • The XFL is officially back. And on Saturday, more than 17,000 fans showed up to cheer on the DC Defenders at Audi Field. It remains to be seen if the enthusiasm can last, but for one weekend at least, the league put out a product that football fans seemed to enjoy. [WUSA9]

  • Alex Ovechkin can potentially join the 700 goals club tonight in D.C. against the New York Islanders. [NBC Sports Washington]

  • The U.S. women’s national team is going to the Tokyo Olympics—and Washington Spirit star Rose Lavelle will have another chance to shine on the big stage. [SI]

  • Dan Snyder wants to get into the sports betting game. According to the Post, lawmakers in Maryland and Virginia say the team is tangling the possibility of building a stadium in their state in exchange for being included in the burgeoning sports gambling business. [Post]

MAKE PLANS, by Emma Sarappo (Love this section? Get the full To Do This Week newsletter here. Tips?

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