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Washington, D.C. – A new investigation by Bloomberg News reveals Texas is damaging its reputation as a business-friendly state by enforcing its anti-responsible investing law. 

In 2021, Texas Governor Greg Abbot signed legislation requiring state entities to divest from businesses that “cut ties” with big polluters, like oil and gas companies. Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar then published a list of entities that he determined the state should stop doing business with. 

Bloomberg’s investigation found:

  • 72 BlackRock funds on the prohibited list have invested more than $2 billion in the oil industry.
  • Almost half the funds on Texas’ boycott list have invested a combined $5 billion directly in the oil and gas industry.
  • Two thirds of the now banned funds have more than $13 billion invested in Texas-based companies.

“The findings demonstrate how vague rhetoric used by Republicans attacking what they call “woke” capitalism has found its way into statutes that have proven difficult to interpret and seemingly contradictory to the state’s self-proclaimed reputation as business friendly,” Bloomberg reports.

Unlocking America’s Future (UAF) weighed in on the Texas law saying attacks on responsible investing are not just unworkable, they are also unpopular. Only 8% of Americans think investigating how U.S. companies spend money on ESG initiatives should be a priority. 

“Policies that block responsible investing hurt the economy, and now we see they can’t be executed.Texas wanted to pave the way for other states to attack ESG, but they’ve just shown the nation their plan is a failure and, in the process, damaged their reputation as a state that’s good for business,” said UAF spokesperson Kyle Herrig. 

To read the full article by Amanda Albright, Mathieu Menhamou, and Saijel Kishan, click here.