Shareholders to Southern Company: Transition from Coal to Low-Carbon Business Model
- As You Sow’s resolution pushed Southern to quantify and disclose its “carbon asset risk”, or the potential losses to shareholders from coal operations. The resolution received preliminary results of 29% of shares voted in support, representing approximately $13 billion in investor assets. Southern’s newest coal plant, Kemper, is two years behind schedule, $4 billion over budget, and is being investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
- The Tri-State CRI resolution, filed by Sisters of Charity of St. Elizabeth, Sisters of St. Dominic of Caldwell, NJ, and 9 institutions, requests Southern disclose its strategy for aligning business operations with the internationally accepted goal of limiting global warming temperature increase to 2˚C. The resolution received 34% of shares voted in favor, representing approximately $15 billion in investors assets, increasing pressure on Southern to share its plans for modifying its business model to meet the 2˚C target.
“Investors are clear: Southern must provide a transparent plan for addressing the risks and opportunities of its transition to a low carbon economy,” said Mary Beth Gallagher, Associate Director at Tri-State CRI. A youth member of Georgia Sierra Club (which co-filed the business model resolution) Marinangeles Gutierrez added “Southern must take meaningful steps towards a low carbon future, not only for the sake of ratepayers but also for its stakeholders, vulnerable frontline communities, and future generations.”