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In 2008 Dutch banks and pension funds voted as shareholders more frequently in favour of climate resolutions than they did in previous years. Pension fund PGGM is in the lead while ING en Fortis rank lowest. These are the findings of the study “Aandelen in klimaatverandering" ("Shares in climate change") which Milieudefensie publishes today where the voting patterns of Dutch banks and pension funds on climate-related shareholder resolutions is scrutinized.
PGGM in 2008 supported 90 per cent of the resolutions calling on companies to introduce climate policies and measures to reduce their CO2 footprint. In contrast, the ING branch in United States did not support a single climate resolution during the whole period. However, the European ING branch performs better, it supported 62 per cent of the resolutions.
In the light of the urgency of the climate crisis financial institutions ought to support every single climate resolution.”As major shareholders financial institutions can help reduce the carbon footprint of companies they finance”, says Willem Verhaak, head of the Climate Campaign at Milieudefensie. "PGGM understood this, now it's time for the rest to follow their lead"
Milieudefensie calls on public authorities and regulators to use their current influence over financial institutions to stimulate them to deal more effectively with the climate crisis.
Milieudefensie examined the voting of equity funds of Rabobank, ING and Fortis and the three pension funds ABP, PGGM and PME. In addition to this study Milieudefensie also presents today a climate policy toolkit for banks: “A Practical Toolkit for Banks. Towards an Effective Climate Policy”.