The state of Texas announced new restrictions on at least 10 finance firms that have declared an opposition to oil and other fossil fuels, since such a stance could “undermine” the Texas economy that depends heavily on such fuel sources.
The Daily Caller reports that the restrictions, announced by the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts Glenn Hegar, will prevent the companies in question from entering into most contracts with entities at the state or local level. The new policy is the result of a law passed in 2021 that requires the state government to limit its ties with anti-oil companies. As a result, the government requested information from over 100 companies to determine their stances on fossil fuels.
The ten companies that currently fall under this new ban are: BlackRock Inc.,
UBS Group AG, BNP Paribas SA, Credit Suisse Group AG, Danske Bank A/S, Jupiter Fund Management Plc, Nordea Bank ABP, Schroders Plc, Svenska Handelsbanken, and Swedbank AB. BlackRock in particular has come under heavy scrutiny in recent years due to its extreme emphasis on so-called “environmental, social, and governance investing” (ESG), a new international practice that sees companies receive a certain score based on how much they invest in green energy, racial and diversity-based quotas, and other far-left practices.
Hager said that the list of newly-banned companies will serve to “create some clarity for Texans whose tax dollars may be working to directly undermine our state’s economic health.”
“A diverse energy portfolio is necessary for Texas to meet our future energy needs, and a vibrant Texas oil and gas industry is a stabilizing force in today’s economic and geopolitical environment,” Hegar said in a statement. “My greatest concern is the false narrative that has been created by the environmental crusaders in Washington, D.C., and Wall Street that our economy can completely transition away from fossil fuels, when, in fact, they will be part of our everyday life into the foreseeable future.”
In response, BlackRock released a statement accusing Hegar of “politicizing state pension funds,” and declaring that the decision is “not a fact-based judgment.”
“BlackRock does not boycott fossil fuels – investing over $100 billion in Texas energy companies on behalf of our clients proves that,” the company added. “Elected and appointed public officials have a duty to act in the best interests of the people the serve.”