Institutional investors back Shell climate change AGM motion as deadline nears

Momentum building for “Aiming for A” resolution

It’s emerged that something approaching 50 global institutional investors are backing the filing of a climate change resolution for Royal Dutch Shell’s annual general meeting (AGM) next year.

As at the end of last week, the resolution, which is being filed by an investor coalition known as “Aiming for A” coordinated by charity investment specialist CCLA, had 88 sets of completed paperwork ahead of the December 22 filing deadline, said Helen Wildsmith, Head of Ethical & Responsible Investment at the fund manager.

The resolutions, and in particular the involvement of church investors, has received wide media coverage; it was reported by RI in October. The “supportive, but stretching” resolutions focus attention on the risks and opportunities that climate change poses and asks for further reporting.

“We should have the necessary 100 co-filers in time,” said Wildsmith, the former Executive Director of UKSIF (the UK’s sustainable investment and finance association).The 50 institutional investors range from pension funds, church investors, foundations and their fund managers, and are from the UK, North America, Scandinavia and Australia, she said.

They include “about a dozen” overseas institutional investors, a similar amount of UK local authority pension funds, the same number of Church Investing Group members and half a dozen Charities Responsible Investment Network members. Supporters also include the Environment Agency Pension Fund, RI can reveal.

The Shell co-filing group is roughly 50:50 institutional and high net worth individuals (HNWIs). The deadline for filing a similar proposal at fellow oil major BP is January 21.

The ‘Aiming for A’ initiative was formed in 2012 to ask major UK-listed utilities and extractives companies to aim for inclusion in the Carbon Disclosure Project’s (CDP’s) Carbon Performance Leadership Index (CPLI). The idea was for “supportive” shareholder resolutions to be filed at AGMs.