Bob Dudley faces criticism for calling for university to ‘come to its senses’ over divestment
Adam VaughanLast modified on Tue 24 Apr 2018 16.46 BST
BP’s chief executive has come under fire from campaigners after he urged Cambridge University not to drop its fossil fuel investments.
Bob Dudley was greeted with laughter when he told an industry conference on Tuesday: “We donate and do lots of research at Cambridge so I hope they come to their senses on this.”
His comments came a week after he launched BP’s climate change strategy, which involves expanding into clean energy and capping carbon emissions.
“These [divestment] efforts are coming out of the US, the east coast and west coast, and New York, and it is generally the simplified idea that we turn everything into renewables – that climate change will be solved by renewables,” he said.
“When you dig into it and look into the numbers, of course, it can’t work. You’ve got to get more sophisticated about it.”
Divestment campaigners reacted angrily and said Cambridge’s academic freedom was at risk.
Sign up to the daily Business Today email or follow Guardian Business on Twitter at @BusinessDesk Cambridge Zero Carbon Society, which is lobbying the university to ditch its estimated £377m investment in fossil fuels, said: “BP’s mask slipped to reveal the ugliness lying beneath.