The greening of the BBC accelerates unchecked. I hope the 18,000 BBC staff who are in the pension fund are happy how their £9bn of funds are being managed; during the course of the past year, the trustees – who incude eco-nut head of news Helen Boaden – decided to entrust a major strand of the fund management to an outfit called Hermes EOS. This is what the fund annual report says (p15):
Hermes EOS is expected to develop policies on socially,ethically and environmentally responsible investing and to encourage these practices in the course of engagementswhere these will enhance or protect companies’ long-term prospects.
Now I do not claim to be an expert on pension funds, but that strikes me as a declaration that henceforward, management of the trust will be dominated by green principles. The impression is reinforced by the fact that Hermes EOS is listed as a member affiliate of an outfit called Eurosif, which desrcribes itself as ‘a pan-European network and think-tank whose mission is to Develop Sustainability through European Financial Markets’. In my book, that’s corporate speak for EU-related eco-loonery. The boss in the UK is Will Oulton:
Will joined Mercer in May 2010 as Head of Responsible Investment for Investment Consulting across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Previous to Mercer, Will was the Director of Responsible Investment at FTSE Group where he led the development of FTSE’s global sustainability indices and services including the FTSE4Good, Environmental Markets and Carbon Strategy indices. In June 2009, he edited the book “Investment Opportunities for a Low Carbon World” and in February 2010 was appointed as Vice President of the European Sustainable Investment Forum – EUROSIF.
And there we have it. The BBC has placed its pension fund into the grasping hands of a load of green zealots. Hermes EOS campaigners will be there are every relevant board meeting trying to force companies to adopt green policies, come what may.
The latest balance sheet shows that over the past five years, the fund has grown by just 3.7% against an industry average of 5%.
I’ve reported before that the pension fund has become – like everything else at the corporation – a greenie enterprise. What’s beyond belief is that the whole of the BBC has slowly but surely also morphed into an integrated campaigning machine for the eco cause, and Hermes EOS is now another arm of that effort. If I were a BBC pensioner, I would be afraid, very afraid.