© Reuters. Woodside Petroleum logos are on display at Gastech, the world’s largest exhibition for the gas industry, in Chiba, Japan, on April 4, 2017. REUTERS / Toru Hanai / Files
By Sonali Paul
MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Proxy advisory firm Glass Lewis has advised Woodside (OTC 🙂 shareholders to reject the company’s climate report at its annual meeting this month, saying it has no substance.
Woodside’s plan slows down efforts by other oil and gas companies to address customer emissions, Glass Lewis said in a report seen by Reuters, adding that he was concerned about the Australian company’s reliance on offsets. carbon instead of operating changes to meet emission reduction targets.
Woodside should also explain how he plans to spend his $ 5 billion investment goal by 2030, he said.
The Australian Center for Corporate Responsibility has also recommended that investors vote against the Woodside climate plan. Companies around the world are under increasing pressure from investors to adopt climate plans and votes are being closely monitored, even if the resolutions are not binding.
Investor climate activism in Australia has been further targeted after technology billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes bought an 11% stake in AGL Energy (OTC 🙂 seeking to close its plants of coal more quickly by blocking a cleavage plan.
Woodside chairman Richard Goyder said the company was talking to shareholders and CEOs about its climate transition strategy.
“We are disappointed that Glass Lewis has recommended that its customers vote against our 2021 Climate Report and disagree with its findings,” it said in an emailed statement.
Woodside’s annual meeting on May 19 will also see shareholders vote on the company’s proposed merger with BHP Group’s (NYSE 🙂 oil business, which Glass Lewis backed, calling it “logical and beneficial.” from Woodside.
“From a valuation standpoint, given that BHP’s motivation as a seller appears to be driven primarily by factors other than price, we believe Woodside will benefit from acquiring BHP’s high quality oil assets in a manner relatively cheap, “Glass Lewis said in his report.
Under the agreement, Woodside will issue shares to BHP for its oil and gas business, giving BHP shareholders a 48% stake in the merged company.