The Investor Environmental Health Network was formed by 17 investment firms - including Amalgamated Bank. Domini Social Investments, Boston Common Asset Management, Calvert Group and Citizens Advisers - to promote use of safer chemicals to enhance both shareholder value and the public health, the group announced.
"We think investment return is compatible with having a strong environmental record," Andrew Shalit, director of shareholder advocacy at Green Century Capital Management, said in an interview. His firm is a member of the network.
"As long-term investors, we are concerned that companies that fail to adopt safer chemical policies risk losing public trust, brand reputation and market share," Karen Shapiro, shareholder advocacy associate at Domini Social Investments, said in a statement from the group. "We want to see our companies becoming more responsive and responsible."
Members of the network have shareholder resolutions outstanding at CVS Corp., Dow Chemical Co. and ServiceMaster Co. related to corporate policy on use of what the filers call suspected toxic chemicals.
As consumers become more aware of "the presence of toxics in products such as cosmetics, lawn care products and food packaging ... companies will need to make the shift as well or risk losing out to competitors who are marketing products containing safer materials," the statement said.