Clarcor Sustainability Report 2014
|Filer||Walden Asset Management|
|Subject(s)||Greenhouse Gas Emissions; Sustainability Reporting|
|Resolved Clause Summary||Sustainability report including ESG performance and GHG goals|
Shareholders request that CLARCOR Inc. issue a sustainability report describing the company’s environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks and opportunities including greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction targets and goals. The report should be available by November 30, 2014, prepared at reasonable cost, omitting proprietary information.
We believe tracking and reporting on ESG business practices makes a company more responsive to a transforming global business environment characterized by finite natural resources, changing legislation, and heightened public expectations for corporate accountability. Reporting also helps companies better integrate and gain strategic value from existing sustainability efforts, identify gaps and opportunities in products and processes, develop company-wide communications, publicize innovative practices, and receive feedback.
The Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) is a United Nations initiative whose members seek the integration of ESG factors in investment decision making and utilize ESG information to analyze fully the risks and opportunities associated with existing and potential investments. Members collectively hold over $34 trillion in assets and include CLARCOR’s top 3 shareowners: Neuberger Berman, BlackRock, and State Street Global Advisors. Additionally research intermediaries like Bloomberg and Factset gather and make available corporate ESG data to clients.
Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), representing over 722 institutional investors globally with more than $87 trillion in assets, calls for disclosure from companies on their Greenhouse Gas emissions and climate change management programs. Over two thirds of the S&P 500 now report to CDP
Sustainability reporting is on the rise globally. In 2011, there was a 46% increase in the number of organizations worldwide using the Global Reporting Initiative’s (GRI) Guidelines for their ESG reporting according to G&A Institute. Smaller companies are proactively implementing sustainability reporting as they grow and anticipate such reporting requests from investors and customers.
Companies such as Intel and Microsoft, among many others increasingly require suppliers to track and report on key ESG factors. CLARCOR’s customer 3M is yet another company noted for requiring information beyond legal compliance from their suppliers on environmental, health, safety, transportation, and labor/human resources practices. Additionally, CLARCOR’s competitors such as Donaldson, Pall Corporation and Parker Hannifin publish sustainability reports.
However, CLARCOR does not report on its sustainability efforts or disclose GHG data. Climate change is one of the most financially significant environmental issues currently facing investors. Occupational safety and health, vendor and labor standards, waste and water reduction targets and product related environmental impacts are particularly important ESG considerations in CLARCOR’s sector and may have the potential to pose significant regulatory, legal, reputational and financial risks. Shareholders currently have no access to substantial information on how the company is managing these business factors.
Given CLARCOR’s decentralized business we believe tracking corporate-wide ESG performance and publishing a standalone sustainability report could help CLARCOR more readily identify issues affecting the overall business.
We recommend that the report include a company-wide review of policies, practices and metrics related to ESG performance using the GRI index and checklist as a reference.