Since 1992 As You Sow has been using shareholder advocacy to move corporations into greater responsibility.
We have filed hundreds of shareholder resolutions and led hundreds more shareholder dialogues. These shareholder engagements have resulted in long-term positive change in behavior at the largest companies in the world.
The Paris Agreement
Last December in Paris, over 190 countries reached an unprecedented international agreement to halt climate change, and As You Sow was there supporting strong action. Today in New York, the global push for climate action — by citizens, NGO’s, shareholders, businesses, and local, state, and federal leaders, among a broad range of other actors demanding action — will be realized in the official ratification of the treaty to hold global warming at 2 degrees Celsius, or less.
- Resolutions and engagement with HP, Dell, Apple, and Best Buy established industry-wide electronic waste take-back and recycling programs keeping over 500,000 tons of e-waste from landfills every year.
- Filing of two consecutive shareholder resolutions contributed to FirstEnergy’s commitment to retire nine of its coal plants in West Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Maryland, and to CMS Energy’s abandonment of plans to build a 930 megawatt coal plant in Michigan.
- Commitments secured from our extensive engagement with Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, and Nestlé Waters NA to recycle 50% of their plastic bottles (70 billion bottles a year) in North America.
- Commitments secured from Yum! Brands (KFC, Taco Bell, and Pizza Hut), Whole Foods Market, Safeway, and Walmart to stop using BPA-laden cash register receipts.
- Following remarkably high support from investors (29%), McDonald’s launched a pilot program in March 2012 to replace Styrofoam cups with recyclable paper cups at 2,000 of its U.S. stores.
- After three years of engagement and resolutions, Starbucks committed to in-store recycling of a significant portion of the three billion paper cups used annually and increased recycled content in their containers.
- Meetings between oil and gas companies and our investor coalition in 2011 resulted in FracFocus.org being created, providing the first voluntary public reporting of chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing fluid.