Skip to Content
77 Mass Ave

Act Now

MIT’s climate-change action plan.
December 22, 2015

On October 21, MIT released “A Plan for Action on Climate Change,” a five-year road map outlining steps the Institute will take—and announced that it will not divest from the fossil-fuel companies in its investment portfolio.

Citing “overwhelming” scientific evidence for climate change, the plan states that the problem “demands society’s urgent attention” and that “the world needs an aggressive but pragmatic transition plan to achieve a zero-carbon global energy system.” MIT will fund further research on the process of climate change as well as eight new centers for research on low-carbon energy technologies. It also pledged to use the campus as a “test bed” for carbon reduction ideas while working to lower campus emissions at least 32 percent by 2030, matching a U.S. government goal.

MIT hopes to attract industry partnerships producing at least $8 million in new annual funding for each of the eight research centers, totaling over $300 million over five years. The centers will focus on solar energy; energy storage; materials; carbon capture, use, and sequestration; nuclear energy; nuclear fusion; energy bioscience; and the electrical grid.

FossilFreeMIT, a student-led group founded in 2013, has collected over 3,400 signatures from MIT community members favoring divestment from about 200 companies in MIT’s portfolio. The report credits the group with helping to bring climate change “to the top of MIT’s institutional agenda” but states that the Institute will instead pursue a policy of “engagement” with industry to help make progress on climate change. To protest the decision not to divest, members of the group staged a sit-in outside the president’s office that was still under way as of mid December.

Keep Reading

Most Popular

transplant surgery
transplant surgery

The gene-edited pig heart given to a dying patient was infected with a pig virus

The first transplant of a genetically-modified pig heart into a human may have ended prematurely because of a well-known—and avoidable—risk.

open sourcing language models concept
open sourcing language models concept

Meta has built a massive new language AI—and it’s giving it away for free

Facebook’s parent company is inviting researchers to pore over and pick apart the flaws in its version of GPT-3

Muhammad bin Salman funds anti-aging research
Muhammad bin Salman funds anti-aging research

Saudi Arabia plans to spend $1 billion a year discovering treatments to slow aging

The oil kingdom fears that its population is aging at an accelerated rate and hopes to test drugs to reverse the problem. First up might be the diabetes drug metformin.

images created by Google Imagen
images created by Google Imagen

The dark secret behind those cute AI-generated animal images

Google Brain has revealed its own image-making AI, called Imagen. But don't expect to see anything that isn't wholesome.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose WongIllustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.