Invest in renewable energy, or else. That’s what shareholders are telling the world’s largest oil company, ExxonMobil.
The Rockefeller family, whose ancestor John founded the original business at the heart of what’s now ExxonMobil, is sponsoring four shareholder resolutions demanding change at the company.
While some of Exxon’s competitors have invested heavily in renewable energy, such as wind and solar power, Exxon has refused to do so. The Guardian newspaper reports that of its $25 billion in capital investments, only $100 million has gone toward a project addressing the environment—climate change research at Stanford University. One of the demands is that chief executive Rex Tillerson leave his role as chairman and that an outsider with an alternative view replace him.
Karina Litvack of F&C Asset Management, one shareholder behind the resolution, told The Guardian that the shakeup could pave the way for a different attitude at Exxon toward the environment. ExxonMobil said that while successful shareholder resolutions don’t bind its board to carry them out, it will reconsider policies challenged by them.