Major US pension fund plans fossil-free future
(Climate News Network, 17 Dec 2020) Goodbye to fossil fuels, says one major US pension fund: they’re no good for either the climate or the economy.
In what’s being billed as “the biggest leap forward worldwide on climate finance action this year,” a major US pension fund has announced plans to move its money out of fossil fuels.
The New York State Common Retirement Fund has a portfolio of $226 billion worth of investments under its control. A substantial portion of that cash pile has been invested in the fossil fuel industry, including more than $1bn in the oil giant ExxonMobil.
Tom DiNapoli, the New York State comptroller, who oversees the state’s fiscal affairs, said the retirement fund was pulling its money out of fossil fuels not only for the good of the climate: the move also made financial sense.
“New York State’s pension fund is at the leading edge of investors addressing climate risk because investing for the low-carbon future is essential to protect the fund’s long-term value”, said DiNapoli.
“We continue to assess energy sector companies in our portfolio for their future ability to provide investment returns in light of the global consensus on climate change. Divestment is a last resort, but it is an investment tool we can apply to companies that consistently put our investments’ long-term value at risk.”