Louisiana State Treasurer John Schroder announced on Wednesday that the Pelican State will withdraw $794 million in treasury funds from BlackRock over its ESG green energy activism.
Schroder announced that $560 million had already been removed from BlackRock and $794 million will be removed from the world’s largest asset manager by the end of 2022.
“This divestment is necessary to protect Louisiana from mandates BlackRock has called for that would cripple our critical energy sector,” Schroder said in a statement. “I refuse to spend a penny of Treasury funds with a company that will take food off tables, money out of pockets and jobs away from hardworking Louisianans.”
Schroder serves as the incoming chair of the national State Financial Officers Foundation. He explained that his action was in response to BlackRock’s embrace of “net zero” Energy, Social, and Governance (ESG) investment strategies that would harm the oil and natural gas industry. Louisiana is a large producer of oil.
Further, he said his decision arose after a meeting with BlackRock representatives, whose statements contradicted BlackRock CEO Larry Fink’s public statements.
Schroder said in his letter to Fink that BlackRock fails to meet the company’s fiduciary duty to investors.
“A focus on political or social goals or placing those goals above the duty to enhance investors’ returns is unacceptable under Louisiana law,” Schroder said.
“They are pushing their agendas contrary to the best interests of the people whose money they are using!” he added. “This is a complete disregard for personal liberty.”
Consumers’ Research Executive Director Will Hild said in a statement that Schroder’s move helps to put an end to BlackRock’s “economic vandalism”:
Consumers’ Research applauds Treasurer Schroder’s commendable decision to withdraw the state’s assets from BlackRock’s misuse. As noted in his letter, BlackRock is using the people of Louisiana’s money to advance a destructive agenda that raises costs for consumers in the state and across the country. The seeds of today’s energy crisis were planted by BlackRock and others in their reckless abandonment of their fiduciary duty to cozy up to radical, woke politicians. We are glad to see the Treasurer working to put an end to their economic vandalism.
Derek Kreifels, the CEO of the State Financial Officers Foundation, said in a statement:
Louisiana State Treasurer Schroder is taking decisive action to protect the citizens of Louisiana by divesting their state’s treasury funds from investment behemoth BlackRock. BlackRock and other investment giants have weaponized ESG, pushing climate and social policy with no regard for the harm they are causing to everyday Americans and calling it an investment strategy. Their reckless agenda is robbing Americans of their retirement dollars and driving up the costs of everyday goods like groceries, gas, and energy.
Kreifeils added, “Louisiana’s divestment, the largest to date, follows similar actions by several states including Utah, West Virginia, and Arkansas with more actions likely coming soon.”
Sean Moran is a congressional reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.