William Eichler 06 June 2017

Local authority pension funds ‘ratcheting up’ climate change engagement

Local authority pension funds are going to ‘ratchet up’ their efforts to encourage companies to be more aware of climate change and how it will impact the value of their stocks.

The Local Authority Pension Fund Forum (LAPFF), the voluntary association of 72 public sector pension funds, announced yesterday it is partnering with 50/50 Climate Project.

The Project is a non-profit group which encourages the 50 largest carbon footprint public companies to create effective long-term climate change strategies.

The Forum said the partnership would allow it to ‘ratchet up its engagement’ with companies on climate risks and its potential impact on shareholder value.

The move will see the Forum draw on the Project’s experience and build on the track record of both organisations.

The Project has already made significant advances securing proxy access for shareholder promoted director candidates, rising from just 1% of S&P 500 large-cap firms in 2014 to over half by the beginning of 2017.

The LAPFF has also had some successes in this area. Most recently, Forum funds co-filed the successful ‘Aiming for A’ strategic resilience resolutions on climate risk at Shell, BP, Anglo American, Glencore and Rio Tinto AGMs.

The new partnership will provide LAPFF with research on company risks and opportunities, analysis of corporate-board climate competencies, and involvement in campaigns to refresh boardrooms.

It will also support the development of a pipeline of credible ‘climate-literate’ director candidates.

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