The state of Vermont is attempting to use the clout of its pension investments to get one of the world's largest corporations to change its business practices. Vermont and a coalition of 47 global investors are challenging the ExxonMobil Corporation to adopt quantitative goals for reducing total greenhouse gas emissions from its products and operations. Upon the request of State Treasurer Beth Pearce, the Vermont Pension Investment Committee recently approved the co-filing of a shareholder resolution asking ExxonMobil to report to shareholders by the end of November on its plans to achieve these goals.
“As a shareholder, VPIC can request that ExxonMobil examine its practices,” explained Pearce. “We believe that clear greenhouse gas emission reduction goals will make Exxon more competitive and in turn protect shareholder value and address climate risk. By requesting this as part of an investor coalition, Vermont has a significant seat at the table to advocate for change.”
The VPIC oversees the management of approximately $4 billion in pension assets for the Vermont Retirement System and the Burlington Employees’ Retirement System.