where checking accounts rebuild communities
Back to homepageInstitutional ReportsSRI Financial Professionals DirectoryToolsNewsSRI Performance and TrendsAbout Us   

August 12, 2011
Investors Ask Companies to Send Trade Associations to Neutral Corner
    by Robert Kropp

Walden Asset Management and Calvert Investments write to companies on the boards of the Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers, urging them to ask trade associations to end campaign against EPA regulation of climate.

When Tim Smith, Senior Vice President of Walden Asset Management, spoke with in December, he said of companies that sit on the board of the US Chamber of Commerce, "They do a disservice to their companies that proclaim a commitment to sustainability by allowing the Chamber to move ahead on undercutting the sustainability agenda."

Smith was referring to a lawsuit filed by the Chamber, challenging the authority of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to issue regulations relating to climate change.

In response to the lawsuit, Walden led a coalition of 44 investors and investment organizations that wrote letters to 35 major companies serving on the Chamber board, urging them to evaluate "the significant risks posed by misalignment between company and Chamber policy objectives as well as the Chamber's aggressively partisan role in electoral politics."

A significant victory for the continuing authority of EPA occurred in June, when, in the case of American Electric Power v. Connecticut, the US Supreme Court "clearly stated it was the responsibility of the EPA under the Clean Air Act to deal with" climate change and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, according to a press release issued by Walden today.

In response to the unanimous Supreme Court decision, Walden and Calvert Investments "followed up with a letter to over 20 companies on the Chamber Board and 24 companies on the NAM (National Association of Manufacturers) board…and urged them to review their own company position on the EPA's role and to ask the Chamber and NAM to 'retreat to a neutral corner' and end their campaign."

A sample letter included in the press release stated, "Sustainability and the environment are so central today to your company's brand that it seems imperative for you to be visible and vocal on the Chamber Board. Some issues are so crucial and high-profile that they require a company to publicly differentiate its position from the Chamber's."

The letter asks companies to publicly disclose their positions on the EPA's authority to regulate climate change, and request that the Chamber "step back from further public challenges of EPA or further lobbying to strip EPA of its authority."


| Reports | SRI Financial Professionals Directory | Tools | News | SRI Performance and Trends | About Us | Contact
© SRI World Group, Inc. - All rights reserved
Terms of use - Privacy Policy - OneReportTM Network