These investors, more and more in number, are saying no to TotalEnergies’ climate strategy

They turn 10 to publicly announce that they will vote against TotalEnergies’ climate strategy during the general assembly on Wednesday, May 25th. A minority group should not change the outcome of the vote, but can give ideas for other funds, not to mention anecdotal.

The movement has been gaining momentum since last year and could shake up TotalEnergies’ AGM this year. As the French oil group’s AG convenes on Wednesday, May 25, several shareholders have decided to denounce its climate strategy.

Among them are OFI AM, which is owned by Macif and Matmut, and Meeschaert Amilton AM, which actually voted against this strategy last year. Today, the two investors renew their vote.

Still a lot of investment in exploration

recalls Aurélie Baudhuin, director of SRI research at Meeschaert. Amilton AM, contacted by BFM Business: “Our challenge is to get commitments that allow us to measure alignment with a 1.5-degree scenario, and that is still missing.”

“There is still a lot of investment in exploration, but current exploration is leading to an operating life of the deposits of 30-40 years,” she adds. Investments in exploration advised against it by the International Energy Agency.

Surprise: Big names in asset management have joined them. Dutch MN, Edmond de Rothschild Asset Management, La Financier de Liquiere, Mandarin Gestion, Sicomor AM, are also preparing to sanction TotalEnergies during the AGM. The latest to publicly announce their negative vote: several Crédit Mutuel affiliates.

Crédit Mutuel Companies Among Bombers

Over the past three years, Crédit Mutuel has regularly published his reservations about the group’s climate policy. In 2020, the company was part of the group that had already submitted a climate resolution in the lead-up to TotalEnergies GM. Last year, she abstained. Like 12% of shareholders, according to a source from BFM Business.

This year, Crédit Mutuel expects “greater exploration efforts” that do not “respect the Paris Agreement,” according to Crédit Mutuel’s Director of Corporate Social Responsibility, Carol Le Maulego, contacted by BFM Business.

If Credit Motwell welcomes TotalEnergies’ efforts over the past three years, it expects a stronger acceleration from the oil giant that “has the means”. A position shared by Meeschaert AM, who does not want to describe its vote as a “punishment”.

Tension has been rising for several weeks

Several weeks ago, the pressure rose slightly. In April, two climate resolutions were introduced by many of these contributors dissatisfied with the group’s climate policy. Decisions are rejected every time by TotalEnergies. In the face of various announcements from shareholders, the French giant does not shudder. A spokesman for the group stated that these funds “represented only 0.33%” of the capital.

Besides these shareholders, financial analysis and consulting firm Proxinvest gave the same indication to its clients: “We recommend an unfavorable vote in order to encourage the Board of Directors to continue its efforts and meet expectations.”

More and more players are clearly positioning themselves, while other contributors are still thinking. One influential fund tells us that today’s vote was still causing internal discussions on the eve of the General Assembly. Take a cautious stance or openly attack the French oil giant? One thing is for sure: After last year’s affirmative vote to welcome the Say About Climate initiative, more and more investors are wondering.

Last year, the climate resolution was voted on by nearly 92%. A slap to the few shareholders who tried to wage a rebellion against the giant oil project, backed by companies, including Reclaim Finance, which regularly oppose fossil fuel projects.

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