The European Commission has put out to tender a contract to study how the EU could best integrate environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors into its banking supervision. The tender was won by Blackrock, the global investment fund.
Given its portfolio spread, Blackrock has an investment exposure to a number of carbon investments.
Blackrock CEO Larry Fink wrote in his annual internal letter. “Climate change has become a defining factor in companies’ long-term prospects,” and “But awareness is rapidly changing, and I believe we are on the edge of a fundamental reshaping of finance.”
In a separate letter to investors BlackRock announced it would exit investments with high environmental risks, including thermal coal, and will also launch new investment products that screen for fossil fuels. (source: Washington Post).
Many believe that the EC is at the forefront of climate change action and regulation. They don’t appreciate the level of lobbying at EC level and how closely the EC works with those whose businesses are linked to carbon. So, the question that needs to be posed is, should the Commission put this project in the hands of Blackrock based on Blackrock’s past record or future promises on climate change? Is the EC too close to big business when it comes to environmental regulation?
Put another way, is the EC appointing Blackrock, appointing the poacher to advise on gamekeeping?
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