Sixteen European investors call for ‘Say on Climate’ in proposal at Engie

APG, Candriam and MN among filers at French energy giant.

Sixteen European investors, including the €522 billon Dutch asset manager APG, have filed a shareholder proposal at Engie, calling on the French utility to offer a Say on Climate vote and improve its disclosure so investors can fully assess its strategy against a 1.5C scenario. 

The filers of the resolution, which are from France, the Netherlands and Belgium, include APG, Candriam, PGGM, Degroof Petercam, Ecofi, l’ERAFP, La Banque Postale, La Financière de l’Échiquier, Mandarine Gestion, Mirova, Messieurs Hottinguer & Cie Gestion Privée, MN, OFI Invest and Sycomore.  

It was coordinated by France’s responsible investment association, Forum pour l’Investissement Responsable, and goes to the vote on 26 April.

The resolution has two requests: first, the utility has been asked to amend its articles of association to include an advisory Say on Climate vote, giving investors a vote on Engie’s strategy every three years and the implementation of it every year. 

Second, the firm has been asked to gather “sufficient information” so that shareholders can fully assess its current plan, including its full value chain emissions (Scope 1,2 and 3), against a 1.5C scenario. 

“As highlighted by our request to have Engie commit to a regular Say on Climate vote, investors are convinced that general meetings should enable an honest and professional dialogue between shareholders and their investee companies,” the filers wrote.  

“This is why the coalition has decided, in addition to the aforementioned resolution, to ask Engie’s board of directors to add an agenda item to discuss the range of specific information required by investors to assess companies’ transition plans during the general meeting.”

The filing of the proposal follows “multiple meetings” between the filers and Engie’s board of directors, the investors revealed.  

Engie’s is recommending a vote against the resolution, highlighting that it already put its energy transition strategy to shareholders at its 2022 annual general meeting and “and has improved the information set out in the TCFD report that features in its integrated report”. 

It added that it is “reluctant to implement an annual vote on the implementation of its strategy”, given the difficulties and uncertainties around carbon trajectories.