Institutional investor engagement of fossil fuel companies faces critical credibility test ahead of May 27 Chevron AGM
May 22, 2015
15,000 participants contact pension funds; only 10 of 1,066 funds respond 1066 pension funds in 44 countries refuse to disclose voting intention to members. Some of the world’s largest pension funds have failed to disclose how they will vote on the unique shareholder resolution 7 at the May 27 Chevron AGM, bringing into question their credibility as transparent and accountable asset owners to the current and future pensioners in whose name they invest.
Since its 13 May 2015 launch, the VoteYourPension.org platform has been used by over 15,000 participants of pension funds and clients of mutual funds to contact an impressive 1066 funds in 44 countries, with only 10 responding.
The VoteYourPension.org platform has been supported by a collaboration of global non-profits in support of resolution 7, the first to propose the return of capital by a fossil fuel company. The investment industry acknowledges that the carbon bubble is a major investment risk.
SumOfUs Senior Shareholder Advocacy Manager Lisa Lindsley said: “SumOfUs members’ retirement savings finances the Chevron holdings of these pension and mutual funds. Our members deserve to know how the shares associated with their money are being voted.”
CEO of the Asset Owners Disclosure Project (AODP) Julian Poulter said: “These aren’t citizens screaming at governments and corporations for change, these are engaged pension members whose retirement savings are at risk. Pension funds have a fiduciary duty to act.”
“Asset Owners have five days to respond to thousands of their own members and prove that engagement is a credible way to manage carbon risk in their portfolios. Members want to know why they aren’t supporting Stockholder Proposal 7 when so many funds have talked endlessly about carbon bubble risks.”
In a separately issued media release, As You Sow President and Chief Counsel Danielle Fugere, said: “Chevron’s continuing to pour billions into finding and developing remote, high-cost, high-carbon reserves is increasingly imprudent.”
As You Sow CEO Andrew Behar added: “The bottom line here is that shareholders lack confidence in the company’s direction and we don’t think that we have a climate competent board capable of innovative thinking, therefore the capital is better spent as dividends than wasted by stranding more assets.”
Oliver Wagg, Communications Manager, AODP
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; Tel: +44 (0) 7885 377264; @AODProject
Brett Abrams, Fitzgibbon Media (SumOfUs)
Email: email@example.com; Tel: +1 516-841-1105; @SumOfUs
NOTES TO MEDIA
Filed by US non-profit group As You Sow, the resolution asks Chevron to halt capital expenditure on exploration for more un-burnable reserves and instead return capital to share-owners. To support the Chevron resolution, global non-profit organisations Asset Owners Disclosure Project (AODP) and SumOfUs launched online engagement platform, Vote Your Pension (@VoteYourPension). The online platform provides the opportunity for pension fund and mutual fund members to focus coordinated action on a single company in order to protect their retirement savings. These savings are at risk of being wasted if they are sunk into high-cost, high-carbon projects that fail to make an economic return in the face of lower-than-expected demand, volatile prices, cost-competitive renewable energy and growing climate regulation.
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SumOfUs.org is a global movement of consumers, investors, and workers all around the world, standing together to hold corporations accountable for their actions and forge a new, sustainable and just path for our global economy.