West Virginia Bans Five Wall Street Firms from State Contracts over ESG Climate Activism

MANHATTAN, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES - 2022/05/25: BlackRock offices in New York City. (Photo by Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty Images)
Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty Images, Zhou Gukai/VCG via Getty Images

West Virginia Treasurer Riley Moore on Thursday banned five Wall Street firms from state banking contracts over the financial giants’ advancing ESG climate activism to the detriment of West Virginians.

“While the ‘Environmental, Social and Governance’ or ‘ESG’ movement might be politically popular in California or in New York, financial institutions need to understand their practices are hurting people across West Virginia,” West Virginia Treasurer Riley Moore said in a statement on Thursday. “I simply cannot stand by and allow financial institutions working against West Virginia’s critical industries to profit off the very funds their policies attempt to diminish.”

ESG investing has become the latest avenue through which leftist politicians and Wall Street firms push corporations and states to adopt social and political positions they otherwise would not adopt. In this case, the ESG movement has moved to divest from the fossil fuel industry and toward the green industry.

Moore escalated the fight against giant financial companies’ attempt to damage the fossil fuel industry and instead redirect funds to the green energy.

In his release, Moore said that five Wall Street firms no longer qualify for state banking contracts: BlackRock, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, and Wells Fargo. In effect, these firms will no longer have access to roughly $18 billion worth of inflows and outflows each year.

U.S. Bank (US Bancorp) was flagged as a potential loss for state banking contracts; however, the financial firms were removed after the firm relented and eliminated anti-coal mining activities from its ESG efforts.

Moore and West Virginia have led the state fight against the financial firms’ anti-fossil fuel activism. West Virginia became the first state to withdraw from a BlackRock investment fund due to its net-zero emissions commitment.

Moore said in a statement in January that BlackRock’s climate change goals run contrary to the wishes of West Virginians.

“As the state’s chief financial officer and chairman of the Board of Treasury Investments, I have a duty to ensure that taxpayer dollars are managed in a responsible, financially sound fashion which reflects the best interests of our state and country, and I believe doing business with BlackRock runs contrary to that duty,” Moore said.

“BlackRock CEO Larry Fink has been outspoken in pressuring corporate leaders to commit to investment goals that will undermine reliable energy sources like coal, natural gas and oil under the guise of helping the planet, but at the same time he’s pouring billions in new capital into China, turning a blind eye to abhorrent human rights violations, genocide and that country’s role in creating the COVID-19 global pandemic,” Moore continued.

Moore added, “Even liberal financier George Soros has said BlackRock’s China investments are ‘a tragic mistake’ that could potentially damage our national security.

Sean Moran is a congressional reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.

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