One of the world’s largest pension funds, run by the Norwegian government, has excluded seven oil companies for causing “unacceptable greenhouse gas emissions”.
In addition it has also excluded five coal companies for breaching the Norwegian central bank’s new product-based coal criteria.
Companies excluded include German utility giant RWE, the largest CO2 emitter in Europe, as well as British mining company Glencore and Brazilian mining company Vale.
RWE and Glencore have been dropped for surpassing the fund’s coal revenue and production thresholds. Vale has been excluded for contributing to severe environmental damage as a result of repeated dam breaches.
A further four companies have been placed on the fund’s observation list for future exclusion. This includes German fossil fuel utility Uniper and Anglo-Australian mining company BHP.
According to Urgewald, a non-profit environmental and human rights organisation, BHP produced 27.5 million tons of thermal coal in 2019, which puts it far above the fund’s exclusion threshold of 20 million tons of annual coal production.
Urgewald director Heffa Schuecking says the organisation welcomed the fact that the Norwegian Government Pension Fund has moved forward with the exclusions first announced in 2019. But it said it was disappointed that further action wasn’t taken against some of those companies on the observation list.