Comptroller DiNapoli: NYS Pension Fund to Divest from Fossil Fuels December 14 2020

From Sustainable Finger Lakes:

In essence, New York State's Comptroller, who is the sole custodian of the state $226 billion pension fund has announced that his office will:
  1. Decarbonize the pension fund's full portfolio by 2040 with interim targets
  2. Complete a systematic review of all fossil fuel investments within 4 years, including divesting from any companies which don't have a plan to leave fossil fuels behind. This includes transitioning their business away from oil and gas production, servicing or transportation, and alignment with the Paris Climate Agreement
  3. Engage in rigorous reporting including annual in-depth reports on implementation plus media announcements each time a review is undertaken and completed. Hiring of new staff to implement the plan.
  4. Commit to a higher level of director engagement including voting against board directors at non-fossil fuel companies that aren't taking climate action in line with the fund's decarbonization goal.
Read more about the announcement in the DivestNY Coalition media release and this background document.

If you’d like to thank the Comptroller through the 350.org website, click here.

Read Bill McKibben's NY Times Op Ed here. In it he suggests that the once-dominant fossil fuel industry has reached a low in financial and political power.

And this, from an editorial in the Albany Times Union:

This is not some feel-good political move. It's an acknowledgment from the nation's fourth-largest pension fund — the world's 14th biggest — that companies based on fossil fuels are going to be poor investments in the not-too-distant future. And such a statement from a large-scale investor has the potential to be a self-fulfilling prophecy of its own. It can lower other investors' confidence in fossil-fuel stocks and depress companies' values, in turn making them even less attractive investments.