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New ExxonMobil CEO calls for socially responsible energy as investors re-file climate proposal

Investors want company to provide a 2-degree scenario analysis

A coalition of institutional investors with $4trn under management, led by New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli and the Church Commissioners for England, have re-filed their climate change disclosure proposal at oil major ExxonMobil that gained a massive 38% support last year.
They want the company to disclose how it will ensure its business stays resilient amid climate change. The investors have had what they term extensive positive engagement with Exxon since last year’s AGM.
A number of major investors from Europe have joined in co-filing the proposal this year. These are Amundi, APG, AXA Investment Management, BNP Paribas Investment Partners, charity funds firm CCLA, Hermes Equity Ownership Services, HSBC Global Asset Management, Dutch fiduciary manager MN (on behalf of PMT and PME, the major Dutch pension funds) and Schroders.
“While our discussions have been positive, Exxon has not committed to provide the 2 degree scenario analysis investors expect from the oil and gas majors, and we have therefore again co-filed New York State’s resolution,” said Edward Mason, Head of Responsible Investment for the Church Commissioners. “We believe Exxon’s board can and should support our reasonable disclosure request.“Meanwhile, new Exxon Chairman and CEO Darren Woods, who has taken over from US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson as Chairman and CEO of Exxon, has blogged about meeting the world’s energy needs “in an environmentally and socially responsible way”.
“Governments,” he writes, “can help advance the search for energy technologies by funding basic research and by enacting forward-looking policies.”

“A uniform price of carbon applied consistently across the economy is a sensible approach to emissions reduction. One option being discussed by policymakers is a national revenue-neutral carbon tax. This would promote greater energy efficiency and the use of today’s lower-carbon options, avoid further burdening the economy, and also provide incentives for markets to develop additional low-carbon energy solutions for the future.”
The discrepancy between the 38% support at last year’s Exxon AGM and the near unanimous support for the similar ‘Aiming for A’ proposals at peer companies BP and Shell led to the ‘Missing 60’ initiative by campaign group Preventable Surprises. Exxon’s AGM is likely to take place in May.