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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Sustainable Investment Program


Comptroller DiNapoli has made addressing the investment risks and opportunities posed by climate change a priority for the Fund. His leadership has been internationally recognized and has led to the Fund being ranked the top U.S. public pension fund, and third globally, for its efforts to assess and combat climate-related investment risk by the Asset Owners Disclosure Project. At the core of DiNapoli’s work on climate change is his Sustainable Investment Program:


Sustainable Investing

Comptroller DiNapoli has committed more than $10 billion to sustainable investments that integrate key environmental, social and governance (ESG) principles into the Fund’s investments, including:

  • $4 billion allocated to a groundbreaking Low Emissions Index that shifts money away from the worst greenhouse gas emitters;
  • $6 billion targeted to sustainable investments across asset classes; and
  • LEED Gold real estate investments, green bonds and private equity investments.

Comptroller DiNapoli, in partnership with Governor Cuomo, has established a Decarbonization Advisory Panel to identify additional avenues for further addressing the risks and seizing the opportunities of climate change for the Fund.

The Fund conducts comprehensive environmental, social and governance (ESG) assessments for all new investments and conducts an annual climate risk assessment by measuring the carbon footprint of the Fund’s public equity portfolio (which had a 16 percent lower overall emissions profile than its benchmark in 2017).


Active Ownership

Comptroller DiNapoli protects the Fund’s holdings by using his status as a major investor to urge corporations to improve their reporting and reductions of GHG emissions and to plan for the opportunities and risks presented by the emerging low carbon economy. In recent years, DiNapoli and the Fund have:

  • Filed more than 140 climate change-related shareholder resolutions, reaching 55 agreements with companies to analyze climate risks, set targets to reduce GHG emissions, increase renewable energy and energy efficiency, prevent deforestation, and appoint directors with environmental expertise;
  • Dramatically increased shareholder support for having major fossil fuel companies and utilities, including ExxonMobil and Duke Energy, examine how goals of the Paris Agreement will impact their businesses and explain their internal plans for addressing climate risk;
  • Called on more than 300 companies in the Pension Fund’s Low Emissions Index to publicly disclose emissions data, succeeding in getting more than 100 to disclose this information; and
  • Joined forces with investors representing trillions of dollars to urge companies to accelerate and expand their emissions reductions, improve their disclosures of climate risk and create sustainable business practices. These investor coalitions include PRI, CDP’s Carbon Action, the Climate Action 100+ and CERES, where Comptroller DiNapoli has served on the Board of Directors since 2011.


Public Policy Advocacy

Comptroller DiNapoli provides public policy leadership on climate change issues that may impact the Fund’s returns, at the international, federal, and state levels. Among these efforts, he has:

  • Supported the Climate Risk Disclosure Act that would direct the Securities and Exchange Commission to require public companies to disclose GHG emissions and plans for addressing risks associated with climate change;
  • Recruited fellow state comptrollers and treasurers to oppose efforts to weaken federal emissions standards for cars and trucks; and
  • Called on the Environmental Protection Agency to halt its roll back of the federal Clean Power Plan.