ESG Archive

Mar 22, 2018
Institutional investors eye gun control
Until now, gun control in the US has largely been a concern from a corporate governance and IR perspective just in terms of faith-based investors - but the high-profile public debate since the Parkland school shooting in Florida may be changing that. Several large financial institutions have in recent weeks broken with precedent and publicly committed to engagement with portfolio companies around gun control, signaling that this may join human rights and political l...
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Mar 12, 2018
How to improve your board’s sustainability game plan
In the second part of a series on boards addressing ESG matters, Denise Kuprionis and Pamela Styles suggest ways governance teams can work to make sure their board is on track 1. Be the leader. Explain to your colleagues that sustainability must be on the agenda. A good way to get out in front as a leader is to publish formal board ESG policies and describe your committee oversight structure. 2. Focus on what sustainability means at your company. Narrow your...
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Mar 08, 2018
E&S overtake governance among US shareholder proposals
Environmental and social (E&S) shareholder proposals – covering issues such as climate change and political spending –outnumbered governance proposals in the US last year for the ‘first time in a generation’, according to ISS Corporate Solutions.    In 2017, E&S proposals accounted for 54 percent of all ESG proposals in the US, whereas in 2012 they accounted for 39 percent, according to data ISS Corporate Solutions has shared with Corporate Sec...
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Mar 06, 2018
What directors are asking about sustainability
Sustainability is increasingly being considered as a material risk – and opportunity – issue by investors, elevating it to a subject that must be discussed in the boardroom. To help you prepare your board, we’ve listed the top six questions directors have asked us recently about sustainability-related matters.  1.              Our board is comfortable with its governance (G) efforts. Do we need to expand our attention to ...
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Feb 28, 2018
Execs, more than boards, responsible on sustainability, Ceres finds
Large US companies are increasingly making executives responsible for their sustainability efforts – but less than a third of boards have written instructions for tackling what is an area of growing concern to investors, according to new research. The Ceres study finds that 65 percent of the companies assessed identify in their public disclosures a senior-level executive charged with ensuring the firm meets its sustainability targets. This is up from 42 percent in...
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Feb 14, 2018
ISS expands data points it will consider
ISS, the world’s largest proxy advisory firm, has announced two new developments that will change how it provides voting recommendations to investors: a new acquisition and the launch of the E&S QualityScore. First, ISS has acquired EVA Dimensions for an undisclosed fee – a move that will provide its clients with ‘a cutting-edge holistic means of assessing and defining performance of their portfolio companies,’ ISS president and CEO Gary Retelny says in ...
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Feb 12, 2018
UN Investor Summit offers pointers for boards
Every two years, investors, executives and industry leaders gather at the United Nations for a unique summit on the state of climate risks and opportunities in the capital markets. This year’s convening of the UN Investor Summit on Climate Risk in late January took place in a dramatically different environment than the last meeting in 2016: the Paris Climate Agreement has been in effect for two years; the US government has shifted its policy on climate risk; shareholder ...
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Jan 30, 2018
BlackRock chair and CEO Laurence Fink on January 16 released his annual letter to CEOs outlining a bold vision linking the prosperity of companies to their ability to deliver both financial performance and positive contributions to society. Entitled A Sense of Purpose, the letter highlights BlackRock’s increasingly active approach to shareholder engagement, it...
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Jan 29, 2018
Chesapeake Utilities: Collaboration is key to governance success
Chesapeake Utilities Corporation is the winner of this year’s governance team of the year (small to mid-cap) award. Under the leadership of director Stacie Roberts, the team has been instrumental in keeping up with best practices even as Chesapeake has undergone rapid growth, with its market capitalization increasing by more than 400 percent over the last decade. To achieve this, the governance team has expanded its roles and responsibilities into areas such as st...
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Jan 26, 2018
How ‘performance with purpose’ shapes PepsiCo's governance
‘Doing the right thing is also the right thing for the business.’ That’s how Cynthia Nastanski, senior vice president of corporate law and deputy corporate secretary with PepsiCo, describes her firm’s approach to governance. This commitment and a string of initiatives designed to boost the firm’s governance capabilities and performance are why this year’s governance team of the year (large cap) award goes to PepsiCo. Over the awards review period, the te...
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