AG joins 13-state push against anti-coal investment initiative

CHARLESTON, WV (NEWS RELEASE) — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey joined a coalition of 13 states in urging the commissioner of the California Department of Insurance to reconsider a divestment policy that undermines the continued success of coal mining.

The California Department of Insurance’s “Climate Risk Carbon Initiative” requires insurance companies to disclose a list of investments and divest any made in fossil fuels. The initiative applies not only to insurance companies located in California, but also insurance companies headquartered in other states that do business in California.

“This is an attempt by the insurance commissioner of one state to regulate the energy sector of a nation,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “There is no benefit to the public or the insurance market by requiring these disclosures and divestments; the action only serves to harm coal miners, their families and everyone who depends upon coal’s success.”

The insurance commissioner also is requiring that insurance carriers sign a pledge to never again invest in coal. However, the so-called risk initiative doesn’t place the same requirements on the renewable energy sector.

The letter points out the potential for legal action if California’s insurance commissioner continues to call for divestment and discriminatory disclosures of fossil fuel investments.

West Virginia joined the Oklahoma-led letter along with the attorneys general of Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Texas, Utah and Wyoming and the governor of Kentucky.

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