18 October 2022
Last Wednesday was a very sad day for climate action. Almost 95% of Commonwealth Bank’s shareholders – including our super funds – voted against a critical request for the bank to stop financing new and expansionary fossil fuel projects.
We’re devastated at this abject failure by big investors to do the bare minimum to try and bring our economy into line with the climate goals of the Paris Agreement. With the retirement savings of millions of Australians used to block this request for climate action, we know super fund members will share our disappointment.
The formal proposal, called a shareholder resolution, put to Commonwealth Bank last week at the company’s annual general meeting (AGM) was crystal clear: stop making the climate crisis worse by financing new and expansionary coal, oil and gas projects. The science is also clear that meeting the Paris climate goals, which Commonwealth Bank and many big investors claim to support, leaves no room for the expansion of the fossil fuel industry. Yet Commonwealth Bank, along with ANZ, NAB and Westpac, are funding companies doing just that.
And they’re doing it with the support of our super funds.
The good news is there are three more opportunities coming up for super funds to push for climate action. Big investors will be voting on the same shareholder resolutions at ANZ, NAB, and Westpac’s AGMs in December.
Together, we can hold the finance sector to account over its climate failures. But the devastating result at the Commonwealth Bank AGM last week shows we need to pull out all the stops and really ramp up the pressure.
Tell your super fund to vote for climate action at the upcoming ANZ, NAB and Westpac annual general meetings.