The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation just sold off its entire stake in a major fossil fuel company

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation — a global health philanthropy — sold off its entire $186 million stake in BP, according to recent filings from the Securities and Exchange Commission obtained by The Guardian.

The sell-off occured between September and December 2015, according to the filings, amid a bad year for BP. The company posted its largest ever annual loss, losing $6.5 billion in 2015.

BP’s stock price dipped 0.72% this morning, but has since rebounded slightly.

The Gates Foundation also dumped its nearly $825 million stake in ExxonMobil in early 2015.

While Bill Gates himself called divestment a “false solution,” in an interview, the Gates Foundation has shrank its total holdings in fossil fuel companies by 85% since 2014, according to The Guardian.

Gates Divest, a campaign to encourage the Gates Foundation to completely divest from the fossil fuel industry, celebrated the move.

“We are thrilled that the Gates foundation continues to divest from fossil fuel stocks, but it’s time to divest the rest,” Alec Connon, a Gates Divest organiser, told Inhabitat. “Investing in oil companies is completely inconsistent with the Gates foundation mission to ensure that everybody has the chance to live a healthy, productive life.”

The Gates Foundation’s divestment comes on the heels of controversy in the fossil fuel industry. ExxonMobil is under investigation by the New York state attorney general, for allegedly stifling concerns about the financial risks of climate change from their own scientists.

NOW WATCH: NASA is looking for ways to dispose of dead bodies in space — and it’s getting weird

NOW WATCH: Briefing videos

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.