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How organized Republican efforts punish companies for climate action


Mr. Moore, the treasurer of West Virginia, in November coordinated a letter from 16 state treasurers and supervisors to banks across the country threatening “collective action in response to the continuing and growing economic boycott of traditional energy industries by U.S. financial institutions. ”

“We sincerely hope that no financial institution will be deprived of the right to provide banking services to our states,” the letter reads.

And in January, Mr. Moore pulled about $ 20 million from a fund run by BlackRock because the firm called on other companies to cut emissions. BlackRock still manages several billion for the West Virginia pension system. “We refuse BlackRock because they refuse us,” Mr Moore said in an interview.

Privately elected officials in conservative states were even more rude.

“These big banks are signaling virtue because they have woken up,” said Gary Howell, a West Virginia spokesman who sponsored a bill that would blacklist fossil fuel companies. The message was received by Documented, a corporate oversight group, at the request of the Freedom of Information Act. “They are either silent or on the list, that’s my goal,” he wrote.

Mr. Howell did not respond to a request for comment.

Idaho senior officials, including the governor and the entire congressional delegation, sent a letter last week to the CEO of S&P Global, a rating agency, opposes the company ‘s use of ESG indicators in its state rankings. “It is impossible that the state of Idaho did not come to the conclusion that S&P has adopted a politicized rating system,” – wrote Republicans. Similar letters were sent by officials from other states, including Utah.

Curtis Loftis, the South Carolina treasurer, wrote an e-mail to senior JPMorgan executives Sept. 1 and warned banks to “stay away from political cultural wars and especially refrain from petty,” awakened “cultures of abolition.”

Mr. Fink of BlackRock has become the main target of the Conservatives. Last June, BlackRock joined Vanguard and State Street to help activists with the hedge fund Engine No. 1 win three seats on Exxon’s board in order to push the energy giant to reduce carbon emissions.

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