Two further UK local authority pension funds have allocated to BlackRock’s newest global renewable power fund, which has raised $1.5bn (€1.35bn) so far.

In a statement, BlackRock said the City and County of Swansea Pension Fund and North East Pension Fund had invested in the Global Renewable Power III (GRP III) fund “in a bid to capture growth opportunities in renewables and invest in line with their long-term financial and sustainability goals”.

BlackRock said that close to 20% of the $1.5bn raised to-date had come from funds in the UK’s Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS), representing around $240m.

Three unnamed LGPS funds committed to the first close of the power fund in late 2019, at which point BlackRock had raised $1bn. The asset manager today said more than 40 institutional investors were invested in GRP III.

Clive Lloyd, chair of the Swansea Pension Fund committee, said: “We were the first local government pension scheme in Wales - and among only a small number in the world - to commission a review of our equity investment portfolio to find out the exact extent of our carbon and fossil fuel-related investments.

“This latest step, in partnership with BlackRock, is part of an on-going effort to gain attractive returns for pensioners, reduce our carbon footprint and support climate-friendly energy production.”

Graham Buntain, investment manager, for the North East Scotland Pension Fund, added: “Demand for renewables continues to grow and this allocation produces both an attractive yield, whilst offering diversification benefits for our overall portfolio.”

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