Huge win! BlackRock responds with bold new climate commitments

Jay Owen Reforming Global Finance, SRI/ESG News

“Our thanks to our eagle-eyed research colleague Daryl Roberts for this background on Larry Fink’s announcement on shifting Blackrock’s portfolio to focus on climate risk!

Special vigilance is needed as mainstream finance begins to re-focus investment models and  accept its responsibilities!

~Hazel Henderson, Editor“

Critics’ cautious praise for BlackRock’s climate move
The $7 trillion money manager is shaking up Wall Street with its plan to make climate change a key focus of its investment decisions. Environmental activists said that they were encouraged but that BlackRock needed to go even further.
Advocacy groups took a victory lap, having made BlackRock a target of protests last year:
• “BlackRock’s new initiatives match the size of the crisis we’re seeing in 2020 and are the direct result of an outpouring of pressure from the global climate movement,” said Diana Best, a senior strategist for the Sunrise Project, an environmental group.
• “This announcement is a major step in the right direction for BlackRock,” Moira Birss of Amazon Watch said.
But they said more needed to be done:
• Ms. Birss said BlackRock hadn’t pledged to stop investing in companies involved with deforestation.
• Ben Cushing of the Sierra Club was critical of BlackRock’s continuing investments in oil, gas and coal companies.
BlackRock says it can do only so much on climate change, since two-thirds of its assets are in passive index funds. But its huge influence can nudge investors toward funds focused on sustainability, Matt Levine of Bloomberg Opinion writes.

What a day! Hopefully you caught the news about BlackRock and Larry Fink’s huge announcement on climate today. It’s a BIG WIN for our movement.



BlackRock responds to demands for climate action with bold new commitments 


Today, after increasing pressure from all sides, BlackRock CEO Larry Fink in his highly anticipated annual letter to the business community, announced a sweeping new set of policies which aim to put climate change and sustainability at the center of BlackRock’s business model.


This announcement is a major shift for BlackRock, which as we here all know had previously failed to take action on climate. It is a very important step in the right direction as the world faces increasing risk from climate change.


The news led the global financial and mainstream media. It originally broke on NYT’s DealBook, and was covered prominently in Bloomberg, FT as news and an incredible editorial, Washington Post, Reuters, the Guardian, Yahoo Finance, & CNBC’s Squawkbox.


So what does it all mean? Our in-depth analysis 


Prior to today’s announcement, our teams had been working hard to frame out what real action at the scale of the climate crisis needed to look like at BlackRock. We even launched a whole website about it. Many others, from climate alarmed Mothers to Youth also wrote Fink to tell him what he needed to do.


Amazingly, BlackRock’s new policies on climate addressed many of our demands. Our team spent the afternoon writing up a detailed – and we mean detailed – analysis of the good, the blah, and the gaps.


Read more on the Larry’s Letter site.




While it’s important to celebrate this huge win, we all know there is much more to do, on BlackRock and other asset managers, banks, and insurance companies. That’s why we’re so excited by the attention Stop The Money Pipeline has been getting. More soon.