Large global investors—representing a combined US$10.4 trillion worth of assets under management—urged oil and gas companies on Friday to start acting responsibly in tackling climate change, putting pressure on Big Oil ahead of several upcoming annual general meetings.
In an open letter to the Financial Times, 60 large institutional investors are calling upon oil and gas companies to do more to support climate goals.
“For the Paris climate agreement to succeed, the oil and gas industry must be more transparent and take responsibility for all its emissions. Over the next few weeks some of the world’s largest oil and gas companies will hold their annual shareholder meetings. How these companies are positioning themselves for a low-carbon future will be an important topic for discussion,” said the investors including Aberdeen Standard Investments, Axa Investment Managers, BNP Paribas Asset Management, and Fidelity International, among others.
“As long-term investors, representing more than $10.4tn in assets, the case for action on climate change is clear. We are keenly aware of the importance of moving to a low-carbon future for the sustainability of the global economy and prosperity of our clients,” the investors said.
Shareholders attending Shell’s meeting next week will be asked to vote on whether the supermajor should set strict carbon emission targets. Shell has recommended that its shareholders vote against such resolution that an activist climate group wants passed.
“Regardless of the result at the Shell AGM, we strongly encourage all companies in this sector to clarify how they see their future in a low-carbon world,” the global investors said in their letter in the FT.
According to the investment firms, companies should make specific commitments to significantly cut carbon emissions and explain how their investments are compatible with reaching the Paris Agreement goals.
“We will continue our oversight and dialogue with oil and gas companies to better understand how the investments we make on behalf of our clients are aligned with a sustainable future,” the investors said.
“Investors are embracing their responsibility for supporting the Paris agreement. It is time for the entire oil and gas industry to do the same.”
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com