Faith-based investors will ask ExxonMobil to change some of its corporate practices to better address climate change during the company’s annual general meeting in Dallas today.
(CNS/Gustavo Amador, EPA)
Working through the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility and advocacy groups, the shareholders have introduced a series of resolutions meant to change how the world’s largest publicly traded energy company responds to global warming.
Dominican Sister Patricia Daly, executive director of the Tri-State Coalition for Responsible Investment, said the resolution that her group of 34 institutional investors has introduced seeks a “moral response” from the company through a policy acknowledging the need to limit global average temperature increases to 2 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels.
Speaking during a teleconference with reporters May 23, Sister Patricia said the resolution, like others pertaining to climate change, “have always been grounded in justice and good business.”
Six resolutions related to global warming are on the agenda for the meeting in Dallas. In a letter to shareholders, a company official has called for their rejection, saying the firm has long addressed global warming concerns.
The company had tried to remove the resolutions from the annual meeting agenda; however, the Securities and Exchange Commission ruled in March that shareholders must be allowed to vote.
While efforts such as the one from the investment coalition have been soundly defeated in the past, this year’s proposals come as ExxonMobil is under scrutiny for its long-standing policy of failing to publicly acknowledge how climate change was impacting its operations.
Seventeen state attorneys general are investigating ExxonMobil and other energy producers for fraud in concealing the impact of climate change on the world.
Another resolution proposed by Capuchin Father Michael H. Crosby, executive director of the Wisconsin/Iowa/Minnesota Coalition for Responsible Investment, asks that the ExxonMobil board of directors nominate at least one candidate with expertise in climate change and environmental matters.
Father Crosby explained during the teleconference that the resolution was introduced because the company “won’t give us access to board members.” He said that by having an environmental expert on the board, the company would be better able to managing the risk of climate change to its business model.
This year’s annual meeting will give Exxon Mobil “a chance to restore the public trust,” Father Crosby said.
Company spokesman Alan T. Jeffers told The New York Times in mid-May that ExxonMobil welcomed discussions with shareholders to help them understand (Read More)