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Fund giants apply heat to oil firms as Shell dispute looms

Fund giants apply heat to oil firms as Shell dispute looms

A group of 60 asset managers including Aberdeen Standard Investments, AXA Investment Managers and Amundi have sent an open letter to the Financial Times demanding oil and gas firms step up their efforts to tackle climate change.

The business said the carbon energy industry 'must be more transparent and take responsibility for all its emissions'.

It comes as some of the largest oil and gas companies hold their annual shareholder meetings over the next few weeks.

According to the FT, activist shareholders are pushing a resolution at Royal Dutch Shell’s annual meeting on Tuesday which would force the firm to align its business with the Paris climate agreement.

Other signatories to the letter include Aviva Investors, BMO, Fidelity International, HSBC Global Asset Management, Investec Asset Management, Kames, Legal & General Investment Management, M&G Investments, Newton, Old Mutual Global Investors and Schroders.

Several big pension funds also signed the letter. The signatories stopped short of backing the Shell resolution.

But they said: ‘Regardless of the result at the Shell AGM, we strongly encourage all companies in this sector to clarify how they see their future in a low-carbon world.

‘This should involve making concrete commitments to substantially reduce carbon emissions, assessing the impact of emissions from the use of their products and explaining how the investments they make are compatible with a pathway towards the Paris goal.’

‘Investors also urge policymakers to take clearer and more collective action on implementing regulation that will support the necessary investment in lower-carbon technologies.

‘We will continue our oversight and dialogue with oil and gas companies to better understand how the investments we make on behalf of our clients are aligned with a sustainable future.

‘Investors are embracing their responsibility for supporting the Paris agreement. It is time for the entire oil and gas industry to do the same.’

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