The Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility is attempting to pressure resource company Rio Tinto to cancel its Minerals Council of Australia (MCA) membership.
It is calling on shareholders to support a resolution to cancel membership in the MCA, citing a misalignment between the MCA’s and Rio Tinto’s commitments.
“The activities of trade associations which block essential climate policy, funded in large part by major resources companies, is of increasing concern to investors globally,” the body said.
“Of particular concern is a misalignment between the top line climate commitments of companies and the relative positions of their trade groups.
“Put simply, the MCA is lobbying for more coal and use of fossil fuels, and still believe this is the future of energy.
“Rio Tinto, on the other hand, needs to be a part of Australia’s transition to renewable energy sources. It just doesn’t make sense for Rio Tinto to spend shareholders funds’ on supporting the MCA, who have all their eggs in one basket, when that basket is full of coal.”
The body already has success in the area, with BHP announcing a preliminary decision to leave the World Coal Association and reconsider its membership of the MCA if it did not stop lobbying practices around coal.
BHP and Rio Tinto are the MCA’s two largest contributors. BHP supply’s the body with 17 per cent of its income and it is though Rio Tinto contributes a similar amount.
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