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World's biggest wealth fund blacklists 4 Canadian firms for greenhouse emissions

Wed 13th May, 2020 2:26am
May 13 (Reuters) - The Norwegian central bank on Wednesday
excluded four Canadian oil and gas companies from its
$1-trillion wealth fund, the world's largest, for producing too
much greenhouse gas emissions, its first use of carbon emissions
as a criterion to blacklist firms.
    Canadian Natural Resources Ltd  CNQ.TO , Cenovus Energy Inc
 CVE.TO , Suncor Energy Inc  SU.TO , and Imperial Oil Ltd
 IMO.TO  were excluded from the fund due to "unacceptable
greenhouse gas emissions", Norges Bank said in a statement https://www.norges-bank.no/en/news-events/news-publications/News-items/2020/2020-05-13-spu.
    The decision was based on recommendations from the Council
on Ethics, the fund's ethics watchdog, because of the companies'
carbon emissions from production of oil to oil sands, the
central bank said. 
    Carbon emissions became a criterion for exclusion from the
fund four years ago, and in 2017 the Council on Ethics
recommended "a small handful" of firms be blacklisted for
producing too much greenhouse gas emissions in either the oil,
cement and steel sectors.
    Norges Bank also excluded three other companies - Egypt's
ElSewedy Electric Co, Brazilian iron ore miner Vale SA
 VALE3.SA , and Brazilian power holding Eletrobras  ELET6.SA  -
for causing severe environmental damage.
    Vale declined to comment, while the four Canadian firms did
not respond to requests for a comment after market hours.
Eletrobras and ElSewedy could not immediately be reached.
    The central bank said it took a long time to sell shares of
several of the blacklisted companies in a reasonable manner due
to the "market situation, including liquidity in individual
shares."
    The fund, formally called the Government Pension Fund Global
and set up in 1996 to save petroleum revenues for future
generations, has grown to almost three times Norway's annual
gross domestic product, far exceeding original projections.

 (Reporting by Ismail Shakil in Bengaluru; editing by
Uttaresh.V)
 ((ismail.shakil@tr.com; +91 8861175297; Tweet @ismail___s;))
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