AGL investors gain vote on emissions

·2-min read

AGL will give investors a say on reducing carbon emissions but some argue the energy provider needs to do more.

AGL on Thursday said investors next year will have voting rights on efforts to meet emissions targets.

The company will use the `say on climate' voting model which fellow ASX companies Oil Search, Rio Tinto, Santos and Woodside this year adopted.

Yet if shareholders do not believe enough has been done and vote against the item, there is little consequence.

Indeed, AGL said the investors' vote would be advisory and non-binding.

That means it does not carry the force of voting on other matters, such as executive pay.

Shareholders can trigger a board spill if 25 per cent vote against two consecutive remuneration reports.

At least one AGL investor, the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility, has asked the company to do more to reduce emissions.

Centre staff have asked AGL to set emissions reduction targets aligned with the Paris Agreement on climate change.

They also want executive pay, and company spending, partly linked to efforts in reducing emissions.

The centre's director of climate and environment Dan Gocher said AGL had three coal-fired power stations and needed credible targets.

He said investors would be sceptical until AGL published targets based on the Paris Agreement.

AGL has not yet agreed.

The energy group is proposing to split its business in response to the shift to clean energy.

One company, called Accel Energy, would continue operating coal-fired power stations to generate electricity.

The other, AGL Australia, would use low carbon-emitting technologies to sell consumers electricity, gas, internet and mobile services.

AGL Energy chair Peter Botten said the demerged companies would publish progress in meeting decarbonisation targets, as well as climate change roadmaps.

If shareholders do not approve the demerger, AGL will still put its climate reporting to shareholders at its 2022 annual general meeting.

Shares were up 0.38 per cent to $7.94 at 1515 AEST.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting