BHP dumps QRC; Origin and Santos should do the same
The Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR) has welcomed BHP’s suspension of its membership of the Queensland Resources Council (QRC), and is calling on Origin Energy and Santos to do the same.
The Courier Mail has reported that BHP has suspended its membership of the QRC after it ran a series of ads on Facebook (featured below) recommending voters “vote the Greens last” ahead of the State election on 31 October. The QRC also welcomed the Palaszczuk Government’s commitment not to share power with the Greens.
Commenting on BHP’s suspension of its QRC membership, Daniel Gocher, Director of Climate & Environment at the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR) said:
“Despite telling its shareholders for three years that suspension of membership of any industry association was simply not workable, BHP has done just that with the Queensland Resources Council.
“Ahead of the NSW State election last year, the NSW Minerals Council distributed anti-Greens material. Clearly, BHP is no longer comfortable with interfering in elections.
“We welcome this move and encourage BHP to look at its other lobbying associations which have been placing a handbrake on climate action in Australia — notably the Minerals Council of Australia and the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association.
“BHP has proven the value of ACCR’s shareholder resolution - some industry associations simply won’t change unless there are financial consequences.
“The QRC was noted as an insidious blocker to climate action in a recent report from InfluenceMap.
“This is not the QRC’s first rodeo — AGL Energy abandoned its membership of the QRC earlier this year.
“Origin Energy and Santos should heed BHP’s warning, and similarly dump their memberships before shareholders demand it of them.”
ACCR’s climate program aims to accelerate Australia’s transition to a low carbon economy in line with the Paris Agreement. We engage with ASX-listed companies on their climate risk disclosure and the need to set emissions reduction targets consistent with the Paris Agreement, and we also push for reviews by ASX-listed companies of their industry associations’ climate policy advocacy.