ALBANY — Comptroller Tom DiNapoli has set a target of getting the state’s $226 billion pension fund’s portfolio to net-zero emissions by 2040 and outlined the most detailed path to date on reviewing — and potentially divesting from — fossil fuel companies.
The fund’s new plan, announced Wednesday, builds on DiNapoli’s previous commitment to review the fund’s portfolio for climate risks, and has been fully embraced by advocates and legislators who had called for full-scale divestment. The 2040 decarbonization target is 10 years sooner than any other U.S. pension fund, according to advocates, marking a major victory and makes New York’s one of the largest funds in the country pursue this level of divestment.
DiNapoli, who in previous years has warned of the difficulties involved with divestment, announced a systematic review of fossil fuel companies starting with the riskiest — coal — in mid-2019. The pension dropped most coal companies due to that climate risk review, which included an opportunity for companies to demonstrate they had plans to transition. A review of tar sands companies is currently underway.
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