BlackRock’s 2030 emissions target: promising ambition, but the proof is in the policy - BlackRock's Big Problem


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    BlackRock’s 2030 emissions target: promising ambition, but the proof is in the policy

    One year after joining the Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative, BlackRock releases its interim emissions reduction target for 2030.

    New York, April 14th, 2022 – Today, BlackRock announced that by 2030, at least 75% of its corporate and sovereign assets managed on behalf of clients will be invested in issuers with science-based targets or equivalent.

    Coming from the world’s largest institutional investor, this commitment could potentially have significant influence on lowering global emissions. The actual impact of the target, however, depends on whether BlackRock implements guidelines to ensure that the heavy emitters in its portfolio are explicitly covered by its goal. 

    Without concrete policies, the asset manager will risk providing cover for the worst climate actors to continue their polluting business as usual. Left unaddressed, this will create a loophole in the financial giant’s net-zero commitment that will allow runaway emissions that could push the world past 1.5°C global warming.   

    BlackRock must also provide more details on how it will evaluate if companies are actually achieving climate targets. It is crucial that companies’ commitments require halving emissions by 2030 rather than relying on offsets and other unproven technologies. 

    Lara Cuvelier, Sustainable Investment Manager with Reclaim Finance:
    “BlackRock must ensure that the bulk of the companies that it invests in have at least halved their overall emissions by 2030. If BlackRock doesn’t disclose the concrete and timebound requests made to companies, this announcement is another smokescreen. The world’s largest asset manager cannot get away with vaguely defined commitments. It must act with urgency, especially with respect to the fossil fuel expansionists in BlackRock’s portfolio that are leading us to climate catastrophe. After all, BlackRock today holds $34 billion in companies planning to expand their coal business, such as Glencore.”

    Casey Harrell, Senior Strategist with the BlackRock’s Big Problem Campaign:

    “BlackRock issued an aspirational goal that it has confidence it can achieve. This goal is big enough that it could have the global impact needed. The real aspirational answer to what percentage of AUM BlackRock needs to have aligned with 1.5°C by 2030 is 100%, because, — you know — math. The next step BlackRock must take is to ensure these science-based targets are based on credible 1.5°C scenarios and that these plans are on track for success well before 2030. To do this, BlackRock must include specific targets and emission reduction goals for heavy polluting sectors. It must use every tool in its toolbelt to achieve these results, including engagement, voting, investment policy, and fund capital allocation.”


    Media contact:

    Jacey Bingler, Senior Communications Manager, The Sunrise Project