The Norwegian sovereign wealth Fund, the largest of its kind in the world Fund, which, in the opinion of the participants of the campaign against climate change needs to send a “shock wave” through the oil and gas industry all over the world, because it recommended that the government completely withdraw the Fund’s assets in the amount of $ 40 billion of oil and gas industry.
In his statement on Friday, March 8, Finance Minister SIV Jensen explained that this decision is intended “to reduce the vulnerability of the” Norwegian Fund “before coming permanent decline in oil prices”. At $ 1 trillion. $ . The US sovereign wealth Fund of Norway is the largest state investment Fund in the world. According to the representative of the Ministry of Finance, to the present time the Fund invests in exploration and production of energy, about 66 billion kroner ($7.5 billion), accounting for approximately 1.2% of the total portfolio shares of the Fund.
Recommendation of the Norwegian Fund will now be sent to the national Parliament for approval.
Groups opposed to climate change, which in recent years have aggressively fought for the elimination of fossil fuel as a key way to reduce threats of greenhouse gases and uncontrolled global warming, celebrated the announcement as a possible decisive turning point.
“We welcome and support this proposal.” Said Yossi Kadan (Yossi Cadan), senior member 350.org campaign for the withdrawal of assets. “If it passes through Parliament, it will cause a shock wave in the market, causing the biggest blow to the illusion that the energy industry there is still decades of business activity. This decision should sound as a warning to private banks and investors whose oil and gas assets are becoming more risky and morally bankrupt”.
Bill McKibben (Bill McKibben), one of the founders of the group, called it a “huge, huge, huge victory.”
In his statement 350.org he adds: “to avoid the most catastrophic effects of climate change and keep global warming below 1.5° C, we need to leave fossil fuels in the ground and transfer the finances towards sustainable energy solutions for all. Climate impacts are already sounding in the country, and we have nothing to lose. Last year Northern heat waves, forest fires North of the Arctic circle and the worrying news that the thickest Arctic sea ice is starting to break down, showed how climate change is close to Norway. Norwegian financiers seems inconceivable to continue to invest in companies that cause all this chaos.
Catherine Howarth (Catherine Howarth), Executive Director of the movement ShareAction, which provides analysis to investors, aimed at creating a more sustainable society, said that the statement of the Norwegian Foundation “is another indication that investors are increasingly dissatisfied with the companies involved in exploration and production of crude oil”.
Institutional investors, managers of sovereign wealth funds and pension funds, she added, “derive their capital from oil and gas companies on the grounds that faster-than-expected growth of clean energy and the associated regulation make the business model of the oil and gas industry is highly vulnerable. This announcement will put pressure on investors to enhance their interaction with the integrated oil companies on the eve of the season (AGM) when shareholders are going to evaluate and analyze the results and strategy of the company.
While the financial reality of the climate crisis becomes ever more obvious to global investors and markets, the group 350.org says that the merit in putting forward a proposal belongs to activists from around the world who boldly spoke out to demand an end to financial and energy hegemony of fossil fuel and energy industry.
The group stated that the basis of the global campaign for the release of fuel and energy assets is “a mass movement based on the people — ordinary people pushing their local institutions to combat fossil fuel industry that is most responsible for the current climate crisis.”
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