CalPERS, CDPQ and other institutional investors are turning up the heat on corporate directors from companies including Berkshire Hathaway and Marathon Petroleum to show how they manage climate risk.
Shareholder resolutions filed ahead of several corporations' annual meetings are asking for more specific climate plans, and in some cases holding the directors accountable.
In a filing Tuesday, the $451.8 billion California Public Employees' Retirement System, Sacramento, and Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec, Montreal, with C$391.6 billion ($304.1 billion) as of June 30, said they would vote against Berkshire Hathaway directors for failing to address climate risk.
In a related proposal for the company's May 6 meeting, the two pension funds called for it to give shareholders annual assessments on how it manages physical and transitional climate-related risks and opportunities. Calling Berkshire Hathaway a "laggard" on climate risk reporting, Drew Hambly, investment director for global public equity for CalPERS said in the filing, "In our view, the company's existing disclosures are insufficient for investors to adequately assess the company's physical and transitional climate-related risks and opportunities."
A separate proposal filed by Robeco and Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs as trustee of the Bright Start College Savings Trust called on Berkshire Hathaway directors to disclose in their annual proxy statement how they oversee climate-related risks and impacts, including in financial statements, and "the degree to which the company deems directors to be competent in climate-related risks," the resolution said.
For Marathon Petroleum's April 26 annual meeting, a resolution filed by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters General Fund asks the board of directors to report on how its climate change strategy impacts key stakeholders, including workers and the community. A resolution filed by the $83.7 billion New Jersey Pension Fund, Trenton, is seeking an audited report on how Marathon's oil and gas asset values will be impacted by the energy transition, and how retiring those assets will impact shareholder value.
A similar resolution on oil and gas asset retirement obligations was filed at Imperial Oil by British Columbia Investment Corp.