Environment Destroying CEOs Held Accountable by Shareholders

ShareAction is an organization that is tired of letting CEOs and companies harm the world and are doing something about it. The organization campaigns on behalf of shareholders to represent environmental, health, labour, and other concerns. They leverage their combined representation of shareholders to ensure that the companies return a profit while not destroying the world.

One of their recent campaigns is focussed on getting oil-based companies to figure out what to do in a world that relies more on renewable energy. Next year will be a big year for the UK based ShareAction.

For the first time in 2017, shareholders will get a binding vote on corporate pay policies in the UK.

Share Action is urging them to use it at BP and Shell to stop bonus structures that reward high carbon strategies.

Catherine Howarth, chief executive at Share Action, said: “Responsible investors who are serious about climate risk have a crucial opportunity to ‘walk the talk’ at BP and Shell next year, by pushing for remuneration policies designed make these major companies commercially resilient in a low carbon world – and voting down policies which fail that test.”

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Triple Bottom Line Companies on the Rise, Propose New Corporation Classification

A triple bottom line corporation is one that watches closely not only profitability but also it’s sustainability. Triple bottom line companies are on the rise not only in performance but also in popularity as more people realize the fragility of the planet and the lack of attention we give it.

Triple bottom line companies give equally weighting to environmental goals and economic goals which can make the company more profitable, but some companies may take a competitive hit. For those companies, a group in the USA is fighting for a new type of corporation known as a “benefit corporation”.

Proponents of this new corporate form say it essentially bakes a triple bottom line into a company’s DNA that frees companies from the fear of shareholder lawsuits if their decisions fail to maximize shareholder value because of some competing interest of other stakeholders, such as workers. Under current corporate case law in the United States, for example, corporate directors are generally assumed to be liable in such suits. Incorporation as a benefit corporation is intended to establish the directors’ fiduciary responsibility to consider the interests of all stakeholders. Formalizing a company’s social and environmental purposes under a legal framework also makes it more likely that its good intentions will survive the departure of its founders or any major spurts of growth and that its directors will have the legal backbone to fend off buyout offers from conventional corporations that do not have the same commitments.

Most benefit corporations to date are either small or medium-sized businesses. But they include a few larger companies that are privately held, such as the outdoor apparel and accessory firm Patagonia Inc., which reportedly had annual sales of about $540 million for the year ending April 2012, and King Arthur Flour, an employee-owned, 223-year-old company with reported sales of about $84 million in 2010.

Read more at Worldwatch.

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