New York State Common Retirement Fund, Albany, reached agreements with five major U.S. companies to work toward a low-carbon future, said New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli, who is also sole trustee of the pension fund, on Thursday.
The agreements led to the $247.7 billion pension fund withdrawing shareholder resolutions with the companies. They call for the companies to take various steps, including setting targets to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, adopting energy efficiency measures, and increasing renewable energy use.
Domino's Pizza Inc. and chemical maker Albemarle Corp. pledged to adopt greenhouse gas emissions targets, while water treatment company Pentair PLC agreed to set emissions and clean-energy targets. Steelmaker Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. will set emissions targets and co-fund a green hydrogen project, while Realty Income Corp. agreed to engage with clients to adopt emissions targets.
The companies will also report regularly on their progress in meeting those goals.
Mr. DiNapoli thanked the companies in a statement for recognizing their role in building a lower carbon economy and their responsibility to shareholders' concerns about climate risk. "The transition to a low-carbon future and meeting our country's renewed commitment to the Paris Agreement present enormous opportunities for smart, sustainable investments," he said.
In December, the pension fund set a goal to transition its portfolio to net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2040.
New York State Common Retirement Fund has filed more than 150 climate change-related shareholder resolutions and reached 77 agreements with portfolio companies to analyze climate risks, set greenhouse gas reduction targets, set renewable energy and energy efficiency goals, prevent deforestation, publish sustainability reports and appoint directors with environmental expertise.