17 October 2019
At the BHP Group plc AGM in London, almost one third of shareholders defied the board on its recommendation to vote down a shareholder resolution about its industry association memberships.
22.16% of shareholders voted in favour of a resolution calling for suspension of membership of industry associations whose advocacy is inconsistent with the Paris Agreement, and a further 7.72% abstained.
Comments attributable to Brynn O’Brien, Executive Director, Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR):
“This is a phenomenal result, and represents a transformation that is well underway. Lobbying counter to the goals of the Paris Agreement has been tolerated for far too long. This is the beginning of the end.
“That companies should suspend funding to organisations that undertake lobbying counter to the goal of a habitable planet is an idea whose time has well and truly come.
“BHP should reconsider its position in advance of the BHP Group Ltd AGM in Sydney on 7 November. Will Ken MacKenzie heed today’s warning, or will he continue to cozy up to the coal heads that dominate Australian politics? History will not look kindly upon those who — in 2019 — choose to side with climate wreckers.
“This result has been achieved despite the lack of support from proxy advisors ISS and CGI Glass Lewis, on the strength of the idea alone. We will only build from here.
“Every single trade association that lobbies to undermine the goals of the Paris Agreement is on notice: your time is up.
Brynn O’Brien, email@example.com, +61 423 951 316
Dan Gocher, firstname.lastname@example.org, +61 410 550 337