Origin’s shift away from gas expansion celebrated by investors with 94% support for climate plan
The Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR) is commenting on the results of Origin Energy’s 2022 AGM, including the company’s Say on Climate vote, in which 93.55% of shareholders supported the company’s Climate Transition Action Plan (CTAP). Following Origin’s announced exit from gas exploration, ACCR recommended that shareholders vote in favour of the CTAP. Our analysis can be found here.
Commenting on the commitment, Alex Hillman, Lead Analyst at the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR) said:
“Shareholders have overwhelmingly endorsed Origin’s climate plan at the company’s AGM, the credibility of which was significantly enhanced following the company’s announced exit from gas exploration in the Beetaloo, Canning and Cooper-Eromanga basins.
“At Origin’s 2021 AGM, 44% of shareholders supported ACCR’s resolution seeking that the company align its capital allocation with a 1.5C pathway and the company changed its strategy accordingly. Today’s support for the CTAP is a ringing endorsement for Origin responding to shareholder expectations.
“Woodside should take a leaf out of Origin’s book.
“ACCR remains concerned about the nature of Origin’s exit from these exploration assets. Through entering a gas offtake with Tamboran, the company is still playing an enabling role in the development of carbon bombs like the Beetaloo basin.
“Whilst divesting exploration acreage moves emissions off Origin’s balance sheet, it may not prevent these emissions from being released. In fact if Origin divests to a junior explorer, this could simply turbocharge the developments.
“ACCR had filed a shareholder resolution with Origin that sought the inclusion of a climate sensitivity analysis in the notes to the company’s financial statements. Origin committed to doing this from FY23, hence we withdrew the proposal.
“Origin’s commitment to disclose the impacts of a 1.5C climate sensitivity from next year acknowledges that climate risk is financial risk. We expect all fossil fuel companies to rigorously disclose climate risk in their financial statements and welcome Origin’s leadership in this space.
“ACCR will be closely watching the conduct of non-executive director Greg Lalicker, who received 98% support for his re-election. We had highlighted to shareholders that Lalicker is CEO of private oil and gas company Hilcorp Energy, which has been named two years running as the highest methane and CO2 emitter of any upstream oil and gas company operating in the United States.”
The resolutions and supporting statements for Origin can be found here.