The French Total will face the pressure of the climate plan during an investor meeting
* Climate Action 100+ says Total is not doing enough
* Meeschaert, other investors oppose climate movement
* Voting follows shareholder rebellions at Shell, BP
* Total refuses to comment on voting intentions at the AGM
PARIS, May 27 (Reuters) – At its general meeting on Friday, several Total shareholders plan to express concern that the French company is not doing enough to cut carbon emissions, while oil companies and global gas companies are under increasing environmental pressure.
The International Energy Agency has warned that new fossil fuel projects must cease this year if the world is to achieve net zero carbon emissions by mid-century, a much faster pace than envisioned so far. now by oil producers.
Total, which has been faced in recent years with growing calls from investors to set more ambitious climate change targets, is seeking shareholder support for a motion on its environmental targets, which includes carbon neutrality here 2050.
But several French and international investors including Meeschaert Asset Management (AM), PME, OFI, Ircantec, La Française, Sycomore and Actiam have told or confirmed to Reuters their intention to vote against the motion or to abstain.
Beyond these investors, who together hold a small proportion of Total’s shares, the extent of the revolt was not immediately clear. Previous efforts to make Total accountable for its climate objectives have not received sufficient support to change its plans.
Amundi, which is Total’s biggest investor, and the Norwegian oil fund, its fourth shareholder, said they plan to back the plan at this week’s meeting.
Total said Thursday it did not want to comment on voting intentions before its AGM.
The extent of the rebellion will be closely monitored for any indication that it could prompt Total’s board of directors to act.
This week, a tiny hedge fund dealt Exxon Mobil a heavy blow, toppling at least two board members in a bid to force the company to do more on climate change.
Shell and BP have both faced increased denial at recent AGMs for not doing enough to align their business plans with the transition to a low-carbon economy, as envisioned in the Paris Agreement of 2015 on the climate.
Total remains committed to new projects and plans to increase gas production in the years to come, and is also involved in the construction of new projects in the Arctic and East Africa.
“It is still not clear how it will achieve its objectives given its current pace of fossil fuel production and its investments which still far exceed those in renewable energies,” said Actiam.
Climate Action 100+, the world’s leading investor group, focused on getting big issuers to step up their efforts, said Total is still not doing enough.
Total is also seeking shareholder approval to rename TotalEnergies, reflecting its desire to produce electricity and its investments in renewable energies.
Reporting by Simon Jessop and Benjamin Mallet, additional reporting by Gwladys Fouche in Oslo, Editing by Sarah White and Alexander Smith