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More investors are putting companies in climate change hot-seat

A record number of companies were put in the shareholder hot-seat last year by US investors who they say the firms aren’t doing enough to disclose and manage how their business will be affected by climate change.

“Investors cannot remain silent to the threats of global climate change, which has the potential to negatively impact businesses and their long-term profitability,” said New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli, whose office oversees the state’s $129.4 billion pension fund. “The New York State Common Retirement Fund wants the companies it invests in to more clearly assess and better manage the far-reaching risks of climate change.”

According to Ceres, a coalition focused on business sustainability, investors filed 95 shareholder resolutions with 82 US and Canadian companies in 2009 — a 40 per cent increase in filings over the previous year. Ceres calls the jump a “first sign of the growing pressure on companies to disclose climate risks and opportunities in the wake of the recent Securities and Exchange Commission’s climate disclosure guidance and other recent policy developments.”

Shareholder resolutions are proposals to vote on certain issues at a company’s annual shareholder meeting. While they’re typically non-binding, the results of such votes often generate significant media attention and can put pressure on a business to change its policies.

Among the companies targeted by investors last year were ExxonMobil and ConocoPhillips. Both were asked to report on regulatory, legal and reputational risks, as well as environmental impacts, from their extensive Canadian oil sands operations.

“As the SEC recently affirmed with its disclosure guidance, climate change presents clear material risks and opportunities for US businesses — and investors have a right to know which companies are well prepared and which are not,” said Mindy S. Lubber, president of Ceres, which helps coordinate the shareholder filings.

Besides ExxonMobil and ConocoPhillips, other companies at which energy- and climate-related resolutions were filed last year include:

  • Southern Company, which is one of the largest producers of electricity in the US and the second-largest emitter of carbon dioxide among the nation’s power generators.
  • International Paper
  • RR Donnelley
  • Weyerhaeuser
  • Boston Properties
  • CVS Caremark
  • Federal Realty Investment Trust
  • Home Depot
  • Kimco Realty Corporation
  • Kroger
  • Lennar
  • Lowe’s
  • MGM Mirage
  • NVR
  • Ryland
  • Safeway
  • Standard Pacific
  • Target
  • The TJX Companies
  • Toll Brothers
  • Walmart
  • Wynn Resorts
  • CONSOL Energy
  • International Coal Group
  • Massey Energy
  • CMS Energy Corporation
  • Dynegy
  • MDU Resources Group
  • Mirant Corporation
  • The Southern Company
  • American Express
  • JPMorgan Chase
  • SunTrust Banks
  • BP
  • Chesapeake Energy
  • Chevron
  • EQT Corporation
  • Shell
  • Valero Energy
  • 3M
  • AK Steel
  • Apple
  • Aqua America
  • C.R. Bard
  • Eagle Materials
  • Expedia
  • Gentex
  • KBR
  • Layne Christensen Company
  • SanDisk Corporation
  • St. Jude Medical
  • Team
  • Vulcan Materials
  • Great-West Lifeco
  • Viterra

1 Comment

  • Mr R. zoellick
    Posted April 9, 2010 at 4:14 pm


    1.investing on climate change projects
    2. Environmental Management project
    3. Reining/control of carbon emissions from sectors

    These projects were approved to check the depletion of ozone layer,greenhouse
    effect by the system known as clean development mechanism (CDM) lunched
    at china.

    This allow developed countries to meet their greenhouse gasses target
    by investing in clean energy projects in the developing world.
    China now believed to be the world’s biggest source of greenhouse gasses to
    make more substantive commitments to reducing carbon emissions.

    These were disclosed and approved by Mr Robert zoellick, president world bank
    saying that,this is an important part of dealing with climate changes.

    The world bank basically serves as a guarantor and strongly supporting the(CDM
    projects) with the sum,so that other developing countries will benefit from it.

    Mr Robert zoellick and boards call for the attention of the Government,National
    climatic organizations,climate change investors to support in this global target.
    You are hereby informed by the board for this global opportunities .

    summit your abstract /clearance letter immediately

    Best Regards
    Mr. Robert Zoellick.
    President world bank

    E-mail to:
    climate investment fund
    Mr David max
    max climate consulting
    World bank Projects
    11 strand U.K, London

    Tel: +447045797221
    This email is confidential and has been scanned by the Message Labs
    e-mail Security System

Comments are closed.

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