With 7 climate resolutions put forward by the members across 7 Danish pension funds, the climate was again in focus at this year’s general meetings at pension funds in Denmark.
Among the filed resolutions, 4 resolutions on climate were adopted with the support of the Board of Directors. Another resolution was voted through without having the support of the board. Thus, two of the climate resolutions that were filed were not adopted, but the hope is that these resolutions will nevertheless be fully or partially implemented in practice. In addition, anti-climate resolutions were voted down by an overwhelming majority.
The member resolutions that were filed were as follows:
Resolution 1: Strengthen active ownership by further aligning voting with the Paris climate agreement
The Board of Directors/The Pension Fund is recommended to prepare a policy for a strengthened active ownership that aligns voting with the Paris climate agreement. The policy should be implemented by 2024 at the latest and include the following:
A. Voting in the most CO2-polluting companies
Based on the principles of the CA100+ Benchmark, the pension fund should vote against re-election of the chairman of the board if the company has not provided sufficient disclosure on:
● CO2 reduction targets for both 2030 and 2050.
● Policy for lobbying activities
● Disclosure of climate-relevant information
B. Voting on fossil fuel companies
The pension fund should vote against re-election of the chairman of the board if the company invests in new fossil fuel projects or new coal power.
C. Voting in banks
The pension fund should vote against re-election of the chairman of the board if the bank through lending and other financial services helps fossil fuel companies to finance new fossil extraction projects or new coal power
The above resolution text, or a resolution with identical wording, was adopted at the general meetings of AkademikerPension, The Pension Fund for Agricultural Academics and Veterinarians (PJD), The Pension Fund for Technicians- and Bachelor of Engineering (ISP) and the Doctors’ Pension Fund. The proposal was filed at, but not adopted by AP Pension and PKA.
Resolution: 2: Sustainable pensions and market analysis
A resolution on “Sustainable pensions and market analysis with a focus on sustainability” was tabled.
The resolution called for an execution of a market analysis of Danish pension fund providers, focusing on:
– Transparency (i.e. increased transparency on investments)
– Ambitious and binding climate emission targets, e.g. by joining NZAOA
– Green investments
With the resolution, the members recommend the Board of Directors to explore the market for an alternative pension fund to cooperate in line with these objectives.
The resolution was filed at the Pension Fund for Architects and Designers (PAD), and the resolution was adopted with 88% of the votes cast.
Resolution 3: New investment option, not limited by exclusion list (anti-climate proposal)
Based on previous decisions by the pension fund to create a number of investment options where members have the opportunity to choose different degrees of responsibility and risk, a member resolution was filed recommending that the board of directors should create and offer members an investment option that is not limited by the pension fund’s existing exclusion list, but which strives for the highest possible return in the long term, and still operating within the framework of the current legislation.
The resolution was filed at Pension Fund P+. The resolution was rejected with over 80% of the votes against.
The general meetings in 2023 have once again shown very clearly that the majority of Danish pension fund members want a high focus on responsibility for their retirement savings, and that in many cases the members can easily succeed in putting their demands through to the pension funds’ boards. However, there is still some way to go before the Danish pension savings are fully aligned with the Paris Agreement. Therefore, it remains extremely important that Danish pension fund members continue their efforts to influence their pension provider to deliver products that combine high returns with climate-responsible investing. The AnsvarligFremtid network contributes to fulfill this ambition.