CalSTRS Claims Significant Climate Change Action During Proxy Season

The California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) says it has increased its efforts to hold investee companies to account on climate change and human capital management by voting on a record number of shareholder proposals and board elections during the 2022 proxy season. CalSTRS, the largest educator-only pension fund with US$314.8 billion in assets under management, said it has voted on more than 1,000 shareholder proposals this year, noting that nearly 100 of CalSTRS-supported proposals received more than 50% of shareholder support. CalSTRS has come under pressure to divest its investments from the fossil fuel industry, via a bill which was ultimately blocked before its state assembly hearing. CalSTRS said it reviewed all shareholder proposals during the proxy season in the context of its corporate governance principles and commitment to a net zero investment portfolio by 2050 or sooner. It also expects corporations to appropriately manage climate-change risks by publishing a report aligned with the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) and disclose, at a minimum, Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions. Aeisha Mastagni, CalSTRS’ Sustainable Investment and Stewardship Strategies’ Portfolio Manager, said: “Our actions during this historic proxy season are rooted in our mission of securing the financial future of California’s public educators and their beneficiaries.” 

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