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Message from Principal Deane on climate change rally

Principal and Vice-Chancellor Patrick Deane on the university's ongoing efforts to help tackle climate change.

Today, Queen’s students are gathering on campus to participate in a climate change rally and many staff and faculty will join them. Institutions of higher education have the capacity to affect great change, to be places where ideas can be discussed freely and issues of the day debated. Our students are using their voices to bring to the world’s attention one of the greatest challenges of our time. I both applaud and deeply respect their protest.

Fighting climate change is a serious responsibility and at Queen’s, research is underway to help find solutions. Across campus, we share a desire to promote environmental responsibility and a healthy future for our planet. I also recognize there may be differing opinions about how to achieve our sustainability goals. With respect to divestment, our board has engaged in an open dialogue before on the issue. I think it is important we continue the conversation.

Queen’s is committed to taking strong actions on sustainability and does so through a broad range of activities including teaching, research, and our own practices. The university has already made significant progress in meeting its greenhouse gas reduction targets of 35 per cent by 2020, 70 per cent by 2030, and carbon neutrality by 2040, as laid out in the university’s Climate Action Plan.

Tackling one of the most significant issues of our time will require each of us to do our part. We must work together to ensure we leave a positive, lasting legacy for those who follow.  

– Patrick Deane, Principal and Vice-Chancellor, Queen's University