Friends Fiduciary witnesses to Quaker values by directly engaging some of the largest corporations on a variety of environmental, social, and governance issues. Climate change, while impacting everyone, has and will continue to disproportionally affect communities of color and lower income communities, making it both an environmental and a social justice issue.
This year, Friends Fiduciary engaged the rail company Norfolk Southern on the issue of climate lobbying, ultimately filing a proposal asking Norfolk Southern to evaluate its direct and indirect lobbying for alignment with the Paris Agreement to limit global warming to below 2 degrees celsius. Friends Fiduciary believes companies that publicly support environmental sustainability should not be financially supporting trade associations or other organizations that lobby against climate initiatives. From a business perspective, this exposes the company to reputational risk; from a values perspective, this is inconsistent with the Quaker values of integrity, transparency, and stewardship.
The proposal received support from a remarkable 76 percent of shares voted, the highest approval percentage for any climate lobbying resolution to date. Friends Fiduciary continues to engage on this issue and hopes this vote indicates a shift among the largest institutional investors to recognizing the urgency and material risk of climate change.
Learn more: Friends Fiduciary Corporation