U.S. Supermajors Face Investor Votes on Emission Cuts

Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp. investors will vote on shareholder demands to curb pollution amid growing pressure on the oil industry to clean up its environmental record.
Exxon holders will consider a proposal from Dutch environmental group Follow This that calls on the oil giant to reduce emissions and sales of oil and natural gas in accordance with the Paris Agreement. A separate measure about low-carbon business planning fielded Arjuna Capital also will be on the ballot for the May 26 meeting.
Exxon’s board is advising investors to reject all seven shareholder proposals, according to a proxy statement published Thursday.
Meanwhile, Chevron shareholders will vote on whether the company should adopt greenhouse- gas reduction targets, study the impact of going net-zero by 2050, and conduct a racial-equity audit, according to a filing.
Chevron’s directors are urging investors to reject the proposals when they vote on May 25.
Climate Threats
Oil and natural gas explores have been under fire for years for not doing more to limit climate-damaging emissions, and activist investors recently have been making significant inroads.
At the same time, politicians and consumer advocates have been critical of the industry as record energy prices aggravate rampant inflation. The chief executives of Exxon and Chevron were among a group of oil bosses pilloried by Democratic lawmakers in Washington on Wednesday during a hearing on gasoline prices and oil supplies.
For Exxon, the latest shareholder proposals come less than a year after activist investor Engine No. 1 orchestrated the takeover of a portion of the company’s board.
In the wake of that boardroom shakeup, Exxon made significant changes to its climate strategy, including adoption of an “ambition” to eliminate emissions from its own operations — though not of its customers — by 2050, and ramping up spending on lower-emission investments.
Stock Rallies
The stock is up 50% in the past year, helped by soaring crude prices. Shares rose 1.5% to $84.90 at 3:14 p.m. in New York.
Aside from environmental items, Chevron’s shareholder proposals include a directive to report on conducting business with “conflict-complicit” governments, according to the filing.
The company also is seeking approval for a new long-term executive compensation incentive plan because the current one expires next year.
Chevron rose 1.1% to $166.67 and have advanced 60% in the past year.

About Parvin Faghfouri Azar

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