Pension funds to meet with Exxon over global warming

Pension fund trustees from seven states and New York City demanded to meet with Exxon Mobil’s independent directors to discuss what they called the oil company’s failure to consider how concern over global warming could affect energy companies.

An Exxon Mobil spokesperson on Thursday said the company planned to meet with the pension officials in July, but it was unclear whether company directors would take part.

Separately, Exxon Mobil released a “corporate citizenship report” in which it said it reduced oil and other spills by 20% last year and reduced emissions of carbon dioxide. It also said any changes in policy to contain global warming should consider economic impact.

Exxon Mobil, the world’s largest publicly traded oil company, reported 2005 profit of $36,1-billion (â,¬28,3-billion)—a record for any US corporation. Its stock price has roughly doubled in four years.

But the trustees of funds that hold Exxon Mobil stock say the company isn’t reacting swiftly enough to evidence of climate change caused by burning oil and other fuels.

State treasurers from Connecticut, California, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Maine and Vermont and comptrollers of the state of New York and New York City were joined in their request by representatives of eight other institutional investors.

Exxon Mobil spokesperson Dave Gardner said the company believes that the build-up of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere “poses risks that may prove significant for society and ecosystems.
We believe that these risks justify actions now, but the selection of actions must consider the uncertainties that remain”. - Sapa-AP

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