Blackrock rejects call to stop fossil fuel funding


SYDNEY: BlackRock Inc, the world’s largest money manager, voted against a resolution calling for Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) to stop financing new fossil fuel projects, it said late on Wednesday.
CBA’s largest shareholder said it opposed the resolution, which also asked the bank to publish targets to cut its fossil fuel exposures consistent with net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, because it was overly prescriptive.
“(It) risks unduly constraining management’s ability to make business decisions,” BlackRock said in a statement on its website.
“Further, the company has demonstrated its commitment to integrating climate risks into its long-term strategy, including task force on climate-related financial disclosures-aligned reporting since 2018 and a stated goal of net zero emissions by 2050.”
The lack of support for the resolution was a perfect example of an asset manager failing to live up to its own net zero commitments, said Jack Bertolus of activist group Market Forces, which helped investors organise the resolution.
BlackRock accounts for a large part of the US$32 trillion (about K112.70 trillion) of total assets supporting groups that have declared commitments to limit greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050, including the institutional investors group on climate change in Europe and the United Nations-backed principles for responsible investment. – Reuters