The states of Arkansas, Missouri and Texas are part of a 17-state efforts to prevent financial institutions from making investment decisions that affect the fossil fuel industry.
Led by Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita, the states have filed an effort in court to prevent the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission from reauthorizing BlackRock Inc, one of the world’s largest investment firms, from owning more than $10 million in utility company voting securities because of its pledge to reduce the carbon impact reported Indiana Environmental Reporter.
Oklahoma is not part of the effort but has its own law preventing BlackRock and banks from using USG standards to prevent investments in the oil and gas industry. Just last week, BlackRock and several other financial groups were banned from doing business with state agencies because of their anti-oil-and-gas stances, per the announcement by state Treasurer Todd Russ.
The Journal Record reported it led to a meeting this past week between BlackRock officials and some state leaders. Here’s why BlackRock wanted an argent meeting…it manages 60% of the state’s $10.2 billion pension fund.
Governor Kevin Stitt commented this past week about the state’s action.
“BlackRock doesn’t want to turn into the next Bud Light, that’s for sure,” Stitt said at a Thursday press conference, a reference to a controversial beer commercial that featured a transgendered person. “They’re traveling the country and very concerned when they show up on a list.”
As the Journal Record reported, BlackRock issued a statement after the state’s announcement, indicating it invests more than $15 billion in public energy companies based in Oklahoma.
“BlackRock offers our clients the choices to help them achieve their investment objectives. Boycott lists raise costs for Oklahoma taxpayers and reduce returns for firefighters, teachers, and state employees seeking to retire with dignity.”
The New York company said its investment conviction is that climate risk is investment risk.
“We believe that society is on the cusp of transformational change towards sustainability,” its policy page reads.
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