AGL Energy’s November 15 proxy contest saw all four of Mike Cannon-Brookes’ dissident nominees appointed to the Australian energy giant’s board, while shareholders directed their dissent toward management’s “say on pay” and climate action plan proposals.
Cannon-Brookes’ four nominees, Christine Holman, Kerry Schott, Mark Twidell, and John Pollaers, were all appointed to AGL’s board, each receiving upwards of 60% support from shareholders.
The green activist argued that AGL needs climate experts on its board to accelerate its decarbonization efforts. The company recently announced plans to exit coal power up to 10 years sooner than previously scheduled, by 2035.
The Australasian Centrer for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR), which has long campaigned for AGL to enhance its climate credentials, said in a press release that the board’s “diverse energy expertise” means it now “has the capacity to both enhance and execute AGL’s climate transition plan in an increasingly competitive energy market, along with growing shareholder value.”
Shareholders were critical towards AGL’s climate transition action plan, which received 30.6% opposition. ACCR had previously claimed that the plan was “insufficient in both ambition and detail,” failing to align with Paris Agreement goals.
AGL also received a first strike, with its remuneration report garnering 30% opposition.
“The boards of other high-emitting companies should be taking note of today’s outcome: climate risk management is an ever-increasing pressure and those who remain flat-footed in the face of rapidly shifting market dynamics will be held to account,” Brynn O’Brien, executive director at ACCR, said in a press release.