Danish pension fund P+ announced it will sell out of 40 coal stocks by the end of the year – a divestment that will reap some DKK250m (€33.6m), which it said it will then reinvest elsewhere.

The fund, which is also called the Pension Fund for Academics, said it was excluding all firms deriving more than 5% of turnover from the extraction of coal, in line with the new responsible investment policy it made public a month ago, with a view to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.

Kirstine Lund Christiansen, deputy director at P+, said: “We are divesting coal companies now, and in the future we will ensure that we do not bring coal companies into our portfolio.”

The pension fund said global mining giants BHP and Vale were among the firms blacklisted, adding that the DKK250m divestment represented a relatively small portion of its total DKK130bn portfolio, and that the capital released would be reinvested “to continue to ensure a good and stable return for the members.”

“Exclusion of all coal companies fulfils the wish of a large portion of members that their pension is not invested in coal extraction,” said Lund Christiansen.

P+ said that as part of its tighter rules on coal divestment, it would apply qualitative assessment in the case of conglomerates and companies that made up over 0.05% of the equity benchmark, focusing on which units in the company extracted coal and whether they had a plan to stop this activity.

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