New York’s $ 226 billion pension fund drives down fossil fuel inventories

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Pension funds, she added, are conservative investors who have been reluctant to make decisions seen as political, “so for a major investor, to say that we are going out of this business sends a very strong signal. market that climate change is a financial risk. ”

New York’s fund, the New York State Common Retirement Fund, has historically invested around $ 12 billion in fossil fuels. Now he is committed to selling his investments in any oil, gas, oil and pipeline companies that have no clear plans to abandon the fossil fuel business. Few companies have disclosed such plans.

The fund is also committed to encouraging other companies in which it invests to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases that heat the planet that they and their suppliers emit. The fund will sell its stakes in companies if they haven’t eliminated those issues by 2040, according to the announcement. The plan could free billions of dollars for potential investments in renewable energy and carbon-neutral industries, analysts said.

Richard Brooks, senior strategist at climate advocacy group 350.org, welcomed Mr DiNapoli’s announcement.

“People now understand that it is the pension funds, universities and asset managers that all facilitate this industry, support it and allow it to continue to pollute communities, cause climate change and lobby against meaningful climate action, ”said Brooks, whose group was one of 40 climate advocacy and pensioners organizations that had led an eight-year campaign to persuade New York institutions to redirect their investments.

He added: “This is part of a larger movement, increasingly including some banks and insurance companies, to reshape the financial sector in the United States”

The movement is growing around the world, with pension funds in the UK, Ireland and Sweden adopting divestment plans. António Guterres, the secretary general of the United Nations, urged governments, foundations and universities to do the same.

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