DISCLOSING THE REAL “CLIMATE RISK”: CASE STUDY: UK “ESG” Billionaire Behind U.S. Climate Regulatory, Litigation Campaigns

From Government Accountability & Oversight

WEBEDITOR

GAO published research today revealing the breadth and depth of a campaign by “ESG” investors  — and one investor in particular — costing hundreds of millions of dollars and instilling in investors the fear that their assets could become worthless, or nearly so, as a result of adverse regulatory and inevitable climate-litigation outcomes.

The campaign is seemingly designed to drive investment to “ESG”-rated entities, in which these activist investors have played bets and which compose part of a a financial “bubble”, one that was rapidly deflating even prior to the recent stock market meltdowns.

A major component of this campaign, as detailed in the paper “DISCLOSING THE REAL “CLIMATE RISK”: CASE STUDY: UK “ESG” Billionaire Behind U.S. Climate Regulatory, Litigation Campaigns,” is regulation by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). After a campaign in which one investor sunk over twenty million U.S. dollar, the Biden SEC proposed the desired rule, comments on which proposal rule are due today.

The research is included or otherwise referenced in GAO’s comments submitted to the SEC. Read the entire paper here.

Toplines

  • New research details how scores of millions of dollars are directed by a UK investor to finance “climate disclosure” campaigns now threatening U.S. companies through proposed rules from the Biden SEC, and to support U.S. climate litigation despite denials by grant recipients that funds are used for U.S.-targeted operations
  • Agenda has driven billions to “ESG” managers — those invested in companies with (or claiming) “Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance” priorities — has helped create an ESG “bubble” now rapidly deflating
  • ESG campaigning has appearance of being massive, sophisticated rent-seeking operation
  • Self-described “opportunistic activist” hedge-fund ESG investor embodies, leads the practice, funding campaigns designed to scare investment away from non-ESG companies; “describes activism as a tool to protect his investments”

Key Points

  • British billionaire and “ESG” hedge fund manager Sir Christopher Hohn has directed scores of millions of dollars to the climate advocacy industry driving investment to ESG
  • Hohn funds global climate litigation-support infrastructure through a network of groups
  • Profits from Hohn’s hedge-fund operation are run from the UK to underwrite ESG, “climate risk disclosure” and climate litigation to, e.g., the U.S.
  • Despite claims by grant beneficiaries that Hohn’s charity “has a strict policy against funding any activities related to US litigation”, funds granted to a Dutch group heavily financed by Hohn are then transferred to U.S. beneficiaries central to the U.S. climate litigation industry
  • Hohn’s foundation maintains strategic oversight of grantees, to second- or third-order beneficiaries
  • Despite successful “ethical investor” branding campaign, Sir Christopher recently described his shareholder activism as “more opportunistic rather than fundamental”; “he describes activism as a tool to protect his investments”
  • A senior Chinese Communist official serves as an “independent climate advisor” to Hohn’s campaign
  • This ‘philanthropic’ activism is reasonably viewed as an historically successful marketing and branding campaign benefitting Hohn’s ESG investment fund and increasing the value of his holdings
  • While the policy advocacy is underwritten as charity, “climate disclosure” and climate litigation, like all ESG campaigning, may well be most properly viewed as necessary support mechanisms for a particular investor class’s chosen portfolio of investments

Transparency Group Sues Biden

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Tom Abbott
June 21, 2022 6:20 am

I wonder if the Biden Crime Family has benefited from this billionaire’s largess?

william Johnston
Reply to  Tom Abbott
June 21, 2022 6:30 am

Rhetorical question. Next.

John Burdick
June 21, 2022 6:25 am

Hohn is one piece of a worldwide consortium of wealthy investors profiting from changes in government policies to which they are privy to ahead of time. They also do it in “charitable foundations” to avoid taxation. Nifty little scam they have going for investing the elites money and avoiding scrutiny.

TonyL
June 21, 2022 6:28 am

Oh Look!
A Fat Cat investor playing “Pump and Dump” games, this time with corporate ESG ratings as the investment figure of merit.

As usual, any “Pump and Dump” game requires somebody to play the part of “The Bigger Fool”, who buys the investment right before the “Dump” phase.
Here people seem to be lined up to play the part of “The Bigger Fool”.

It’s Popcorn time.

Old Man Winter
June 21, 2022 6:35 am

ESG’s just more virtue signalling that gives them license to be as hypocritical as possible!

Reply to  Old Man Winter
June 21, 2022 8:56 am

Sadly way more than just virtue signalling, govts are easy to control (via virtue signalling), which leaves banks and corporations, ESG has already prevented new fossil fuel power stations and related infrastructure.

The future belongs to China.

Old Man Winter
Reply to  climanrecon
June 21, 2022 9:38 am

I should’ve changed “be as hypocritical as possible” to “do whatever it takes to get what
they want”.

Last edited 15 days ago by Old Man Winter
Derg
Reply to  climanrecon
June 21, 2022 10:03 am

Sadly, this ^

Steve Case
June 21, 2022 6:36 am

Stock brokers will tell you that ESG is sort of a nebulous thing as companies decide for themselves what it means and some companies like the oil industries dabble in environmental investments when you wouldn’t think of them as ESG qualified. They go on to say that there are mutual funds that specialize in ESG and if you’re looking to rid yourself of ESG ala the GAO report today, those would be the ones to dump.

Derg
Reply to  Steve Case
June 21, 2022 10:05 am

Steve I work for a large insurance company that now has a climate czar….Jesus H Christ on a popsicle stick.

fretslider
June 21, 2022 6:51 am

Where does Extinction Rebellion get its money?

“…he has pumped money into Extinction Rebellion (XR), the “respectful disruption” campaign that has staged high-profile sit-in protests around the world. When Hohn was revealed as XR’s single biggest donor, he said: “Humanity is aggressively destroying the world with climate change and there is an urgent need for us all to wake up to this fact.”

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2021/mar/05/the-very-private-life-of-the-man-on-britains-biggest-salary

He’s a very rich loony.

Drake
Reply to  fretslider
June 21, 2022 9:17 am

Not loony at all. Extremely greedy and willing to use any and all methods to achieve his goals.

I would assume that he cares less about CAGW, or the environment, just that he has found a way to make money from the morns who do, and wishes to increase the number of said morons willing to invest. XR just helps to keep the needed “fears” in the public eye to encourage more moron investment.

I wouldn’t doubt that when he knows the SEC will require what he wants them to, he will short the negatively affected industries as another way to get more profits. Greedy, thy name is GREEN.

DaveS
Reply to  fretslider
June 21, 2022 9:51 am

XR are the useful idiots.

john harmsworth
Reply to  fretslider
June 21, 2022 9:52 am

Bogus virtue signalling for profit, in the same moral territory as The Guardian? The usual suspects, methinks.

Carbon Bigfoot
Reply to  fretslider
June 21, 2022 1:21 pm

I think he needs to meet kate.

Fraizer
June 21, 2022 6:53 am

Now we know who’s paying Griff

Ben Vorlich
Reply to  Fraizer
June 21, 2022 12:12 pm

He’s not earning much at the moment

Old Man Winter
June 21, 2022 7:01 am

While they’re keeping 24/7 solar as a reliable standby to avoid blackouts, they’re also HEAVILY
promoting carbon capture which will let them keep it as a PERMANENT part of their long-term
scam. Right now. battery backup’s way too expensive to make solar & wind reliable. Germany
has enough nameplate capacity in solar & wind each for 100% of what they use & yet face a
daunting shortfall because of too little storage. Oz is constrained by too much water @
Tumut (Joannenova- … Snowy Hydro can’t run … too much water). That’s the “dirty little
secret” they’re not telling anyone, including The True Believers™.

David Wojick did a rough estimate of the cost to have enough backup for a “5-day dark
period” for solar. His estimate was 200 hrs of storage for each hour of production- 8 days.
This would cost $50B/GW just for battery storage. (CFACT 1/19/22 Unreliability Makes
Solar Power Impossibly Expensive)

David cited a paper where Gregory calculated the cost of replacing the 3k TWh produced
annually in the US by reliable 24/7 solar with solar & wind. His result was up to 30 days of
backup.for each hour of production- almost 4 times as much as David had “guesstimated”
with solar alone. The main reason it was so high was seasonality which peaked in
May/June- after winter which uses a lot of energy.

Gregory also ran scenarios that kept some 24/7 solar in the mix, as it’s “blessed” as being
okay because of carbon capture. This reduced the cost a lot & is their “backdoor way” to
keep RE from totally failing. They NEED 24/7 solar LONG-TERM as there is no other way to
get a lot of backup & they need that truth to stay hidden. Carbon capture is the vehicle to make
that possible. Sneaky little beggars!

https://www.cfact.org/2022/06/16/breakthrough-in-u-s-grid-storage-estimating/

https://blog.friendsofscience.org/2021/12/21/the-cost-of-net-zero-electrification-of-the-u-s-a/amp/

Steve Case
Reply to  Old Man Winter
June 21, 2022 7:13 am

While they’re keeping 24/7 solar as a reliable standby to avoid blackouts, they’re also HEAVILY promoting carbon capture which will let them keep it as a PERMANENT part of their long-term scam. 
________________________________________________________

Sequestration, carbon capture or whatever it’s being called, is entirely without merit.

Old Man Winter
Reply to  Steve Case
June 21, 2022 7:51 am

They must keep the illusion of it’s merit and/or potential alive. Without that, they can’t
justify using “evil 24/7 solar” which they NEED as the hidden main part of their storage
scam Pentultimate hypocricy!

Drake
Reply to  Steve Case
June 21, 2022 9:22 am

But just remember the BEST method of “carbon capture” is to use CO2 to pressurize old oil fields to increase production. That is the only reason that there are credits for that, both Rep. and Dem. paid for politicians made sure their cronies in the oil and gas industries could benefit from GREEN.

Pat from kerbob
Reply to  Drake
June 23, 2022 9:03 pm

It’s not pressurization. Another name for co2 is acid gas and it acts as a lubricant for enhanced oil recovery.

DMacKenzie
Reply to  Steve Case
June 21, 2022 9:28 am

Steve, very approximately….
If you accept that you need hydrocarbon liquid fuels for a good part of your economy, you are forced to accept sequestration as viable CO2 control method (you also need to believe in Carbmageddon). However, hydrocarbon liquid fuels need to be double-double today’s price with 1/3 of that price being spent on sequestration (CO2 capture, drying the water out of it, big HP compression, and pipelining to depleted gas reservoirs).
Don’t kid yourself, the powers that be are moving that direction…they just aren’t very excited about the numbers and don’t want the man in the street to know just yet, until most of it can be hidden in fuel cost increases, due to inflation, Putin, Chinese chips, evil oil profiteering, whatever…..

Steve Case
Reply to  DMacKenzie
June 22, 2022 10:49 am

If you accept that you need hydrocarbon liquid fuels for a good part of your economy, you are forced to accept sequestration as viable CO2 control method (you also need to believe in Carbmageddon).
_______________________________________

I don’t accept “Carbmageddon”. Warmer weather, longer growing seasons, more rain, more arable land and CO2 enhanced food production is not a problem and doesn’t require a solution.

Old Man Winter
Reply to  Old Man Winter
June 21, 2022 7:28 am

Horrendous errors-

1) Paragraph 2, line 2- “His estimate was 200 hrs of storage for each hour of production- 8 days”

s/b “His estimate was 200 GWhs of storage for each GW of continuous production- 8 days”

2) Paragraph 3, line 2- “His result was up to 30 days of backup,.for each hour of production-”

s/b “His result was up to 730 GWhs of backup. for each GW of continuous production- 30 days”

I apologize for the inconvenience. Thank you.

Last edited 15 days ago by Old Man Winter
June 21, 2022 7:50 am

Which Dutch group?

fretslider
Reply to  HenryP
June 21, 2022 8:19 am

You could do worse than this one…

leitmotif
Reply to  fretslider
June 21, 2022 8:33 am

I think that’s the only rock song with yodelling in it.

fretslider
Reply to  leitmotif
June 21, 2022 9:12 am

No flute in that one!

Ben Vorlich
Reply to  leitmotif
June 21, 2022 12:22 pm

Saw them live at The Flowerpot in Derby about a month ago. Thijs Van Leer and Pierre van der Linden from the early 1970s and two new members. An excellent performance took me back to my 20s.

Brad-DXT
Reply to  fretslider
June 21, 2022 9:43 am

Needs more cowbell.

Reply to  fretslider
June 21, 2022 3:47 pm

Dull and boring. Kept waiting for it to start, but they just kept playing the unmemorable opening riffs over and over. How about a little SRV?

Nick Graves
Reply to  Pflashgordon
June 22, 2022 12:22 am

Texas Flood for green points?

markl
June 21, 2022 9:26 am

CC is just one leg of the ESG stool being barkered by the Marx brothers. All of the craziness happening in the world today is not coincidental but a plan a century in the making.

john harmsworth
June 21, 2022 9:47 am

Sounds like the kind of story Russell Brand would like to cover on his podcast. 5.7 million subscribers I believe and he’s moving further and further to the right wit every story he looks into.

Derg
Reply to  john harmsworth
June 21, 2022 10:09 am

Try the No Agenda podcast. They have no advertising and have been following global warming which became climate change and turned into climate extinction for over 10 years.

n.n
June 21, 2022 10:19 am

Go Green for renewable, laundered greenbacks.

Jeff Reppun
June 21, 2022 11:49 am

The real climate change risks lie with the industries dependent on reliable energy supply, more so than the energy producer. That is who SEC should be pushing to disclose climate risk.

With energy supply disruptions that are caused by subsidized promotion of intermittent sources of energy, these companies will be negatively affected financially by the inevitable disruptions.

US industry’s ability to compete against China, who actually learned a lesson recently on the downside of intermittent reliability, will be impacted, as will their investors. The real long-term winners are likely to be the fossil fuel industry which will eventually be called on to help undo the catastrophic damage instigated by ignorant policy makers.

The reduction of refining capacity, initiated by not just the pandemic but also an aversion of the industry to commit capital and maintenance expense in view of political threats, is what we now must deal with in higher fuel prices.

2hotel9
June 21, 2022 2:21 pm

Piano wire time.

Gunga Din
June 21, 2022 3:29 pm

But, is he a buddy of Soros?

June 21, 2022 8:24 pm

Hohn should have this whole category of criminality named after him, like Ponzai.

marlene
June 21, 2022 8:30 pm

There you have it. Because of the “climate change” scheme, money no longer trickles down. It trickles up.

Alasdair
June 22, 2022 5:56 am

I have nothing but contempt for this Sir Christopher Hohn in the way he using his wealth to destroy other peoples lives in the interests of his own greed.

As a major supporter of the ‘Extinction Rebellion Movement’ he is merely acting as the ‘Useful Tool’ of the Chinese Communist Party.

We oldies know what happens when the Communists get control; but it seems to me that the younger generation are unaware and have weirdly mixed feelings. They are sitting Ducks.

Kingsley Smith
June 23, 2022 9:34 pm

Does Hohn own a private jet?

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