Gorebal Warming Measure “Narrowly” Voted Down by Shell Oil Company Shareholders

Guest ayyy! by David Middleton

Shell investors vote down global-warming proposal

By Sarah Kent

Published: May 22, 2018 10:37 a.m. ET

THE HAGUE–Royal Dutch Shell PLC RDSB shareholders voted down Tuesday a proposal requiring the company align its strategy with efforts to limit global warming, signaling support for steps the company has already taken on climate change.

The resolution, put forward by Dutch activist shareholder group Follow This, won just 5% of the shareholder proxy vote. It called on the company to set emissions targets in line with international ambitions to limit global warming to less than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

[…]

At Tuesday’s meeting, a group of 27 investors with nearly $8 trillion under management put their names to a statement calling on the company and others in the industry to do more.

“We applaud the ambition stated…and indeed challenge all other oil-and-gas companies to follow suit; but we call for this ambition to be translated into firm medium- and short-term targets,” the statement said.

Signatories included Legal & General Investment Managers, Aviva Investors and UBS Asset Management, which count among the company’s top twenty shareholders, as well as the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, the largest pension fund in the U.S.

[…]

Marketwatch

Over the past week there have been several articles about this bit:

At Tuesday’s meeting, a group of 27 investors with nearly $8 trillion under management put their names to a statement calling on the company and others in the industry to do more.

So what?

When only 5% of shareholders are willing to vote for nonsense like this, who gives a rat’s ass about what a group of x investors with nearly $y trillion under management have to say about anything?

This post meets the approval of the real Arthur Fonzerelli…

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JimG1

Don’t have 8 trillion invested but I was one of those shareholders who voted it down.

Tom in Florida

Excellent. You invested to make money as do all investors. Green skinned zealots don’t seem to comprehend that.

Quite so. David does ask the question about who cares, but we should care about the “investment managers” that are pushing virtue signaling over making money for their clients. (Used to be in the industry; when I was, shenanigans like that were a fast ticket to SEC/NASD/State audit, shutdown, and appearances in court.)

John Garrett

Same here.
I’m seriously peeved by Shell’s continual appeasement of the climate nutters. I wish the company would just tell ’em to bugger off.

Old Englander

“Appeasement” and “Self destruct” are closely allied ideas, whether applied to companies or even countries (T. May, please note). The old maxim “never sell Shell” may not be wise much longer.

MarkW

If they were managing my money, they very quickly wouldn’t be.

rocketscientist

Seems wallets and reason won the day.

Latitude

Libs play optics…A million people demonstrated…..well, 325 million didn’t

Curious George

The consensus was for the measure. Only 95% of votes went against.

Joe Civis

lol ++

RockyRoad

An Olympic race narrowed to two competitors–it was reported by the Soviet Union that their man came in second and the other coming in next to last.
So typical!

LdB

They tried the same junk at the largest Australian company BHP .. they got 18% vote. Most of the vote was couple of big Superannuation funds with very green policies and board (as it isn’t there money what do they really care).
The stunt was covered by the left wing press as a win in the same manner. Obviously 20% is a win in green/eco groups
https://theconversation.com/rio-tintos-climate-change-resolution-marks-a-significant-shift-in-investor-culture-95927

Tom Halla

It would be against the fiduciary duty of the management to accept it. Doing something suicidal for the current business would seem to fit.

J Mac

Elitist virtue signaling goes down in flames….Love It!

Gary Pearse

The 8 trillion ‘under management’ is at great risk if this is what their thinking is. Check and see if any of your investments are their management and shift it into another financial group. Hmm…97% of climate troughers believe in dangerous human caused global warming and only 5% of investors. Want a free evaluation of this kind of investment group? Look how activists have P155ed away trillions to no discermible benefit on a ‘problem’ that so far has yet to declare itself.

Carbon Bigfoot

As long as Shell pays a 5% dividend there will be plenty of investors out there, including me, to take up the slack.

gunsmithkat

Well, they voted their pocketbook not the stupid.

nn

A consensus gave us catastrophic anthropogenic global warming. And a consensus took it away.

Bryan A

David,
Love the “Narrowly” Snark

markl

Idiots. What oil company in their right mind would vote to put limitations on itself or its’ product for appeasement of an issue that hasn’t been proven? This seems like the new Progressive tact to get what they want. Like convincing white people they’re all racist because of their color.

Coeur de Lion

Didn’t any of these clever people ask where the 2 degrees came from?

The usual suspects (eg. Guardian) are spinning this as though activists are holding Shell’s feet to the fire. In fact no institutional investors (even Norway’s wealth fund) voted for this resolution. I suspect they also don’t want shareholders setting operational targets displacing management’s discretion and accountability.
But the season of Climate Proxy Wars is just starting, and maybe they will get lucky with another target. A caveat from some observers:
“This trend, while relatively new, is alarming and it differs significantly from traditional activism. While traditional activist shareholders used the proxy proposal process to advance views that differed from management on what was best for the company, they never did anything that would undermine the reason for their investment, which was to maximize shareholder value. In contrast, the new wave of shareholder activists, have a fundamentally different goal; to exploit the proxy proposal process to drive wider societal change.”
More at https://rclutz.wordpress.com/2018/05/23/climate-proxy-fighting-season-and-first-result/

bill young

What gets me is that these so called investors, at least in the case of Aviva and Legal & General, are public companies owned by real investors. Have the directors of these companies consulted their shareholders before embarking on this action? Until recently I owned Aviva shares – I don’t recall being asked to vote on any climate related issues

Indeed; these companies (Aviva etc.) hold in trust the assets of their shareholders with a duty to maximise both assets and returns. At their board meetings they should asked why voted in this manner without consent.

Barbara

Go to UNEP FI and read some of their publications and about their activities.
For example:
“Carbon Asset Risk Framework”, Published July 2015
UNEP FI / WRI (World Resources Institute) report.
http://www.unepfi.org/publications/climate-change-publications/portfolio-carbon-initiative-publications/carbon-asset-risk-framework

Barbara

UNEP FI
Portfolio Decarbonization Coalition (PDC)
“Smart Carbon Pricing Policies Can Drive Investment in a Cleaner Future”, c.Nov. 2014
http://www.unepfi.org/pdc/smart-carbon-pricing-policies-can-drive-investment-in-a-cleaner-future

Barbara

UNEP FI
Re: (TCDF) Taskforce on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures
Investment
http://www.unepfi.org/investment/tcfd

Barbara

Above should be: (TCFD)

Barbara

UNEP FI
Energy Efficiency
Re: Energy Efficiency investment, financing.
http://www.unepfi.org/climate-change/energy-efficiency

Barbara

UNEP FI
Re: Shareholder proposals.
“Over 100 Financial Institutions Mobilized to Increase Global Investment in Energy Efficiency”, 2015, 4 pages.
http://www.unepfi.org/fileadmin/documents/EnergyEfficiencyFinanceStatement.pdf

Barbara

UNEP FI, 12 December 2017
Re: UN Alliance.
“UNEP FI, UN Global Compact and PRI Form UN Alliance For SDG Finance”
http://www.unepfi.org/news/themes/positive-impact/unep-fi-un-global-compact-and-pri-form-alliance-for-sdg-finance

Barbara

UNPRI / PRI Association, London, UK
PRI partnership with UNEP FI and UN Global Compact
http://www.unpri.org
And:
Gov. UK
Companies House
PRI Association, London, UK
Section: Filing History > Reports
https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/07207947

Barbara

UNEP FI
Search Results For: Ceres
Supporting Institutions include: Ceres
http://www.unepfi.org/?s=Ceres

Barbara

UNEP FI
Re: IPCC
“2009 Investors Statement on the Urgent Need for a Global Agreement on Climate Change”, 12 pages
Includes signers.
http://www.unepfi.org/fileadmin/documents/need_agreement.pdf
And:
UNEP FI, June 2014
Re: IPCC
http://unepfi.org/publications/climate-change-publications/guidance-for-financial-institutions-publications/climate-change-implications-for-investors-and-financial-institutions

Barbara

UNEP FI
Search Results For: Freshfields report, 2005
UNEP FI and PRI
Webpage has additional articles.
http://www.unepfi.org/?s=Freshfields+report
Al Gore also mentioned in another article on this webpage.

Barbara

UNEP FI
Search Results For: Roadmaps
24 October 2016
Roadmaps include Australia, Canada, UK and US.
http://www.unepfi.org/?s=roadmaps
Al Gore mentioned in another article on this webpage.

Barbara

UNEP FI
Search Results For: North America
Actions, activities, events, etc.
Also > Older Posts Pages.
http://www.unepfi.org/?s=North+America

afonzarelli

AAAYYY!!!

afonzarelli

(DM, any chance you can move my comment to the top spot? ☺)…

Paul Penrose

What a bunch of dimwits. How the hell can an oil company reduce emissions in any meaningful way except by selling less oil? That’s economic suicide. I wouldn’t want my money managed by any investment company that couldn’t understand why this would be a bad thing.

BallBounces

Instead of money, they should pay investors like this GVC dividends — green vanity credits.

“Signatories included … the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, the largest pension fund in the U.S.”
CALPER’s constituents are the retirees of the state governments. However this is not much of a risk to them, because the state’s taxpayers are on the hook for the difference if investment returns don’t cover the costs (and they don’t and won’t). So the ultimate losers on this kind of investment policy are the people who pay high taxes in this people’s republic.

s-t

So they are making a STATEMENT through the retirement system?
Isn’t that SPEECH?
Isn’t there a free speech violation of all the people covered who never licence anyone to make such statement?

Erny72

Perhaps surprisingly, one of the votes against the motion was the Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund who, despite conflating political virtue signalling with making money on an investment portfolio of late, decided that “…the companies are best positioned to set the specific targets in-line with their long-term strategy…”,meaning it’s not up to slacktivist shareholders to dictate how a company runs its affairs.
It’s not all indicative of the SWF seeing sense though, they still maintain that “…boards should integrate relevant climate change challenges and opportunities in their business management…”.
Jesus Wept.

Davis

“Gorebal”, should be “Gorebull”.

drednicolson

It’s the Gorebull Woemann what done it!

Rob

Shell isn’t likely be in the retail business much longer if they don’t get their prices at the pump under control.

troe

Just enough people who understand the importance of making a return on their investment. Naturally the gang will call for a taxpayer bailout of the mislead retirees. The Mike things change the more they stay the same

LdB

I don’t have a problem with companies with investors as the investors should know what the board is doing. In Australia the big eco company players are superannuation funds and they often don’t disclose clear and exactly what they are doing to the members.
The green groups love them but it’s easy to play the moral high ground with other peoples money.
https://www.smh.com.au/money/super-and-retirement/australian-super-fund-comes-second-in-global-green-rankings-20160429-gohxfo.html

John B

Those people with trillions under management have a legal responsibility to maximise the returns on those funds. Investors in those funds are within their legal rights to sue fund managers who take actions that do not maximise returns. Such laws are pretty standard across the Western world.

Wallaby Geoff

In Australia we pay about US$3.80 (per US gallon). Should be about the say as US.
Our fuel is overpriced for one reason – profit motive. I think Europe is much worse however.

michael hart

A large fraction of it is due to taxes. e.g. http://news.bbc.co.uk/olmedia/930000/images/_933965_fuel_duty3_300.gif
Some politicians like to talk the green twaddle about getting rid of fossil fuels. But those politicians never get to be Chancellor of the Exchequer, who over-rules everybody except the Prime Minister. They need the revenue from taxes on fossil fuels, and they know it.

Bob in Castlemaine

In Australia the excise tax payable on both diesel and unleaded petrol (gasoline) is currently around $0.41/litre, GST is around $0.12/litre i.e. taxes make up about 38% of a typical current pump price of $1.36/litre. In 2016 Australian passenger cars and light commercial vehicles consumed almost 25,000 megalitres of diesel and petrol fuel combined, presumably this means that in 2018 the Federal Government will be pocketing around $13billion in taxes paid on fuel for passenger cars and light commercials.

MarkW

In what passes for your mind, are you saying that oil companies in the US don’t make a profit?
Regardless, only a few pennies of the cost of that gasoline is profit.

Bob in Castlemaine

Good to see the lunatics aren’t yet in charge at RDSB.

Sara

Shell did the smart thing and asked OTHER shareholders to vote. The non-institutional investors, not the gazillionaires, ruled the day. If I had money in a fund that was as foolish as those mentioned, I’d move it very quickly and loudly to something more sensible.
Those turkey CAGWers are going to try all the tricks they can, you know.

Sara

They may own those shares, David Middleton, but if they vote to do something that makes the stock price tank, then they have many shares of nothing. RDShell can be broken up and sold off to other companies. How many times have we seen this?

JN

I always get amused with this religious phrase “…set emissions targets in line with international ambitions to limit global warming to less than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.”
I would like to know sound evidente that support this…

Steve Borodin

i think I will disinvest in Legal and General.

paqyfelyc

Can someone tell me
* why the plural, “levels”?
* the plural implies the existence of several, different levels. Which ones are the reference to compute the +2°C limit? the average, the higher, the lower, some combination… ???
* how is the +2°C limit computed?
* how much higher of these levels are we currently? +1? +1.99? +3?

Ian Macdonald

I have shares managed by Aegon, and they misused their position as my broker to vote FOR this nonsense on my behalf – Which action I had not agreed to.
I wrote to them this morning explaining why I was DIVESTING myself of them as my fund manager.

AGW is not Science

Wouldn’t it be awesome if Eco-Fascists could be evicted from their lofty positions in “management” in the organizations they control by shareholders revolting against this type of economic value-destroying activity?! Sounds like a great way to launch a “counter-offensive” against Eco-Fascism.

… a group of 27 investors with nearly $8 trillion under management …
Sounds like a big number. Out of a total aprox. $142 trillion total worldwide under management, not so much.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_assets_under_management
And the value of Shell stock they own isn’t mentioned. Typical.

mwhite

https://www.thegwpf.com/green-groups-invest-in-fossil-fuels-leaked-documents-reveal/
“the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the American Museum of Natural History, and several left-leaning funds have investments in private equity firms specializing in oil and gas”

fretslider

So, in 2017 the rebellion was 6.3% and this year it was 5%
Could support be mirroring the drop in global temperatures these ast two years?

afonzarelli

David, you’re cooler than Elvis !!! Thanks for the add on, my dad ‘ll really luv it. Sorry for the delay in my show of appreciation. These days the fonics sometimes comes a little slow. (didn’t come up with elvis ’til the mornin’ light)…

afonzarelli

David, you’re cooler than Elvis !!! Thanks for the add on, my dad ‘ll really luv it. Sorry for the delay in my show of appreciation. These days the fonics sometimes comes a little slow. (didn’t come up with elvis ’til the mornin’ light)…

afonzarelli

(oops, i guess you could say that i’m doubly grateful here… ☺)

Amber

Shell “knows ” it will never be enough . The climate charlatans want to bully their agenda .
Well done Shell you got my vote .
Thanks for helping to produce the highest standard of living by finding and producing fossil fuels .
You don’t need to be apologists .
Tell the hypocrite eco – anarchists to go invest in cow dung and bird blenders .