Elon Musk calls S&P 500 ESG Index 'a scam' after Tesla gets kicked off list

In a series of tweets, Tesla CEO Elon Musk expressed his displeasure and said political attacks on him would escalate in coming months

FP Staff May 19, 2022 08:15:43 IST
Elon Musk calls S&P 500 ESG Index 'a scam' after Tesla gets kicked off list

File image of Elon Musk. AFP

Elon Musk lambasted S&P Global Ratings and said it has "lost its integrity" after Tesla lost its spot from the Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) 500 index.

S&P Global index tracks companies on their environmental, social and governance standards. The Tesla CEO said, "ESG is a scam. It has been weaponized by phony social justice warriors."

He further said, "Exxon is rated top ten best in world for environment, social & governance (ESG) by S&P 500, while Tesla didn’t make the list!"

Expressing his displeasure, Musk in a series of tweets, said "political attacks" on him would "escalate dramatically in coming months."

Musk also said that despite Tesla "doing more for the environment than any other company ever," it has been removed from S&P global index.

At the beginning of this week, S&P Global Ratings announced removal of the largest producer of electric cars from the sustainability list citing concerns related to working conditions at Tesla among its reasons.

S&P explained the reasons in a blog and citied accusations of racial discrimination and poor working conditions at Tesla's California factory and the car maker's handling of federal investigations of crashes involving its autopilot feature.

S&P Dow Jones Indices' ESG chief Margaret Dorn said, "While Tesla may be playing its part in taking fuel-powered cars off the road, it has fallen behind its peers when examined through a wider ESG lens."

As per the announcement, in it changes, effective 2 May, the sustainability index added Twitter Inc and oil refiner Phillips 66, while dropped Delta Air Lines and Chevron Corp.

According to Barron's, nearly $65 billion is indexed or benchmarked to the S&P ESG index, compared to more than $13 trillion for the overall S&P 500 — which includes Tesla.

With inputs from agencies

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