Copyright: 123RF/Marcel Schauer

New York City is taking major steps toward divesting from fossil fuels by hiring investment advisors to review three of its pension plans and make recommendations about divestment.

Combined, the three plans have more than $155 billion in assets under management, of which about $3 billion is invested in fossil fuel reserve owners’ securities.

The city has hired Meketa Investment Group Inc. to review the New York Employees’ Retirement System, the New York City Board of Education Retirement System and the New York City Teachers’ Retirement System, which has also hired BlackRock Financial Management Inc.

Read: Considerations for institutional investors around divestment

The review will inform a divestment strategy for the funds. This comes after the city first announced its goal to divest from fossil fuels within five years in 2018.

“Climate change is the most pressing challenge of our time, and we need to meet our climate emergency with every tool at our disposal to protect our children and our children’s children,” said Scott M. Stringer, the city’s comptroller, in a press release. “In accordance with our fiduciary duty, the trustees are taking the next major step in our first-in-the-nation divestment goal and leading the charge toward a clean, green and sustainable economy. Our city workers and our future deserve nothing less.”

The city is also aiming to hire public market investment managers to target companies that generate revenue from climate migration, renewable energy, energy efficiency, green buildings and electric vehicle energy storage, with the goal of doubling the city’s investments in climate solutions.

Read: Divesting from fossil fuels doesn’t mean sacrificing returns: report

Copyright © 2020 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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