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Tri-CRI Member Mercy Investment Services Congratulates Choice Hotels for Signing ECPAT Code

Tri-State Coalition member Mercy Investment Services congratulates Choice Hotels for signing the ECPAT Code.  This move follows years of productive engagement between Mercy Investment Services and Choice Hotels on human trafficking.  Read the full press release here and below:


Mercy Investment Services congratulates Choice Hotels on signing the ECPAT Code to help end human trafficking.

The Sisters of Mercy, through their investments, began collaborating with Choice Hotels on the issue of human trafficking in 2008. Since then, Choice has developed and implemented, with shareholder input, a human rights policy; created training that is available to all franchised Choice hotels; and increased communications with their hotels, namely surrounding events such as the Super Bowl that are considered high risk for human trafficking. Choice also started offering Choice Hotel members the option to donate Choice Privileges points to the Polaris Project, which uses the points to provide free hotel rooms for rescued human trafficking victims.

"We've been pleased with Choice's commitment to help end human trafficking," says Pat Zerega, senior director of shareholder advocacy. "Signing the ECPAT Code was the next step in Choice solidifying its commitment to end human trafficking." Sister Valerie Heinonen, OSU, who began the dialogue with Choice on behalf of the Sisters of Mercy says, "Choice is to be commended for its programs and trainings for the owners and general managers of its franchises, a number of which are small operations."

Tri-State Coalition for Responsible Investment Rejoices in Pope Francis’s Encylical, Laudato Si

We rejoice in the leadership of our Pope Francis with this clear proclamation in Encyclical ‘Laudato Si’ of the foundational Gospel message, “that all may have life and have it to the full.”  His insights reinforce the calling of the ministry of the Tri-State Coalition for Responsible Investment, to merge investment decisions with social values in the belief that investments must achieve more than an acceptable financial return. We are pleased to see Pope Francis highlight the importance of far-sightedness in our care for ecosystems, a perspective often neglected in our current economic systems.

Our Coalition has raised concerns with corporations about these challenges facing humanity, inspired by our recognition of our interconnectedness of people and planet, and the elements of integral ecology. The investment world has recognized the opportunity in efficiency and the low carbon transition, but this must grow to meet the urgent demand.  The Encyclical reinforces our obligation to think critically about our patterns of production and consumption of energy, out of concern for the common good and our sense of responsibility for one another. As responsible investors, we commit to continue to engage ourselves and the private sector, to invest in climate solutions, to promote protection of fresh water and biodiversity, and to make the radical decisions that will facilitate the transition to more sustainable lifestyles and economies.

Finally, we resonate with Pope Francis’ message for strong, enforceable international agreements and urge all world leaders and the private sector to take up the challenges, together with all the peoples of the world.

We join investors from ICCR in welcoming this strong statement.

Tri-State Coalition Member Statements and Press on Encyclical:

Sister Patricia Daly, OP - "For those of us in the developed world, Pope Francis calls us to a profound reflection on our lives as individuals, consumers, and investors. My prayer is that we may welcome “Praised be” as a call to realign our lives, and the political, economic and religious systems of our world, to be faithful to all of creation, especially the most vulnerable."

Sister Joan Agro, OP - Letter to the Editor,

Sister Pat on Fox Business show Varney & Co.

Sister Margaret Galiardi - 'Laudato Si' - An Encyclical of Re-membering

Maryknoll- Ecological Conversion: Called to Hope, Spurred to Action

Report Back From AGMs: Investors Press CEO to Acknowledge Climate Risks

Shareholder proposals to adopt Greenhouse Gas reduction goals were put forward at Exxon Mobil and Chevron on May 27th.  The proposal at Exxon received 9.6% of the vote in support and at Chevron received 9% in support. Proponents are disappointed by this result, particularly given the urgency of action to address climate change and the regulatory and financial risks posed by unmitigated emissions.

Shareholder Comments at the Exxon Annual Meeting raised the “moral & religious imperative for humanity” on the company to set goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, citing support from interfaith leaders across the globe and the anticipated encyclical from Pope Francis on the environment.  State Treasurer of Vermont, Beth Pearce said that in order to succeed in the long-term, Exxon must adapt to operate in a carbon-constrained economy. During the Q & A, shareholders noted the absence of discussion of climate change in the opening remarks, asked CEO Rex Tillerson about the scale of investments in renewables, about the “Plan B” to respond to climate change and whether the company would publicly call for a price on carbon at the Paris treaty negotiations.

Other climate change resolutions received stronger support, with preliminary results:

At Exxon Mobil

Item 4 – Independent Chairman . . . . . . 33.8% FOR 66.2% against

Item 5 – Proxy Access Bylaw . . . . . . . . . 49.4% FOR 50.6% against

Item 6 – Climate Expert on Board . . . . . .  21% FOR 79% against

Item 7 – Board Quota for Women . . . . . . 4.3% FOR 95.7% against

Item 8 – Report on Compensation for Women . . . . 5.8% FOR 94.2 Against

Item 9 – Report on Lobbying . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21% FOR 79% against

Item 10 – Greenhouse Gas Emissions Goals . . . . . . 9.6% FOR 90.4 Against

Item 11 – Report on Hydraulic Fracturing . . . . . . . 24.9% FOR 75.1% Against

At Chevron

Item 5: Report on Lobbying. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28% FOR

Item 6: Cease Using Corporate Funds

for Political Purposes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  4% FOR

Item 7: Adopt a Dividend Policy. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4% FOR

Item 8: Greenhouse Gas Emissions Goals. . . . . . . . .9% FOR

Item 9: Report on Shale Energy Operations. . . . . . . 27% FOR

Item 10: Proxy Access Bylaw . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55% FOR

Item 11: Independent Chairman. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22% FOR

Item 12: Independent Director with

Environmental Expertise. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  20% FOR

Press on the meeting

ExxonMobil Boss Faces Environmental Jabs From Nun and Friar at Dallas Meeting

Shareholders File Record Number of Climate-Change Shareholder Proposals This Year

Exxon Mobil Corp Won't 'Fake It' On Climate Change Views, CEO Says

Exxon Shareholders to Vote on Climate Change, Fracking

Investors Call on ExxonMobil, Chevron to Stop Resisting Transition to Clean Energy

On Eve Of Shareholder Meetings at ExxonMobil and Chevron, Global Investors Demanding Bolder Action on Climate Change

Press Release

Public and faith-based investors representing over $1 trillion will urge oil & gas giants to live up to their stated visions as energy companies of the future by driving the transition to a low-carbon economy.

NEW YORK, NY, TUESDAY, MAY 26TH, 2015 – As members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility and shareholders of ExxonMobil and Chevron prepare to address management at the annual general meetings (AGMs) of these companies on Wednesday, May 27th their messages will focus on what they view as the biggest risk facing the company: climate change.

As the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions becomes more imperative due to the growing body of scientific evidence on the impacts of climate change, fossil fuel companies are facing increased scrutiny from policy-makers, investors and the public. This scrutiny has only intensified in recent months as world leaders prepare for the climate talks in Paris this fall, and faith communities around the world anticipate the imminent release of Pope Francis’s encyclical on the environment.

Institutional investors in Exxon and Chevron, two of the world’s largest oil and gas companies, have several climate-related proposals on the company proxies this year. Given impending climate regulation, investors argue greenhouse gas emissions pose serious and material risks to the long-term health of fossil fuel companies and have advocated for emissions reductions and increased investments in the development of more sustainable forms of energy production. Frustrated by what they view as slow and insufficient gains on these concerns, they will be expecting more meaningful commitments that indicate that the board and management of these companies aren’t resisting, but are responding to mounting calls for climate action.

“As a shareholder and long-term investor, the Vermont Pension Investment Committee believes it is in the best interest of the company and its long-term shareholders for ExxonMobil to examine its practices and develop goals to drive performance. We believe that clear greenhouse gas emission reduction goals will make Exxon more competitive and, in turn, protect shareholder value and address climate risk. Climate change poses real financial risks,” said Vermont State Treasurer Beth Pearce.

Members and allies of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR), a coalition of institutional investors that advocates for improved corporate environmental and social performance, will be on hand to present resolutions regarding the setting of GHG reduction targets and risk management protocols in natural gas production, among others. ICCR members have been engaging both ExxonMobil and Chevron for decades on these issues, pushing management to adapt its business to the new energy landscape.

Tri-CRI Launches Proxy Voting Declaration Platform for Exxon and Chevron GHG Goal Resolutions

The Tri-State Coalition for Responsible Investment and the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR) have organized a process for asset owners and fund managers to declare their intention to vote in support of the shareholder proposals to set greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction goals ahead of the Exxon Mobil and Chevron Annual General Meetings, both on May 27th.  The goal is to amplify the voice of long-term investors in the run-up to the shareholder meeting.

The declarations will be gathered until May 26th and will be made public in stages.  Visit for more information and to publicly declare support for either or both of these resolutions.

At the time of the launch on May 6, the Connecticut Retirement Plans and Trust Funds, Vermont Pension Investment Committee, and investors with over $68 Billion in Assets Under Management have declared their support for at least one of these two shareholder proposals:

As long-term asset owners and fund managers that are also supporters of corporate planning for climate change, we believe the companies would be well-served by establishing GHG emission reduction goals for their products and operations. These goals will drive innovation in the companies’ business models and allow Exxon Mobil and Chevron to be competitively positioned to succeed and thrive in a carbon-constrained economy.


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