Republican AGs Attempt to Block BlackRock’s Alleged Promotion of ESG Policies

  • A group of 17 Republican AGs filed a motion to intervene in connection with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) issuance of a three-year blanket authorization allowing BlackRock Inc. to buy more than $10 million in utility companies. The AGs raise concern about whether the federal regulator should prioritize ensuring that the asset manager refrains from imposing environmental, social, and governance (ESG) policies on those acquired companies.
  • According to the motion, BlackRock has represented itself as a passive, non-controlling investor when applying for and receiving blanket authorizations from FERC in the past. The AGs allege that BlackRock is not in fact a passive investor because it has publicly committed to phasing out traditional energy investments and is a signatory to associations that champion ESG policies.
  • The AGs ask FERC to audit whether BlackRock is in compliance with its representations and commitments in their application for reauthorization, to order BlackRock to function as a passive, non-controlling investor and to cease any attempts to influence utility operations to adopt ESG policies.