Border to Coast Pensions Partnership has published its revised responsible investment policies to clarify its approach to long-term engagement to encourage positive change and active ownership on behalf of its partner funds’ £34 billion of assets.
The revised policies – the Responsible Investment Policy and the Corporate Governance and Voting Guidelines – clarify and strengthen Border to Coast’s position on matters such as climate change and diversity ahead of the 2022 AGM season.
It also outlines the four new priorities in addition to diversity and climate change, that will be key themes in its engagement over the coming years.
They are: low carbon transition; waste and water management; social inclusion and labour management; and diversity of thought.
“Now, more than three years since our founding, it is important that we continue to evolve and update our approach to engagement, including our priority themes, to ensure we continue to work effectively as an active owner,” said Jane Firth, head of responsible investment at Border to Coast.
“Our engagement themes support us in focusing our efforts on areas we can have a real impact. Alongside this we have strengthened our voting guidelines on issues such as climate change and diversity where we expect greater progress to have been made.”
On climate change, Border to Coast will now vote against the chair of boards at companies in high carbon emitting sectors if they fail the first four indicators of the Climate Action 100+ Net Zero Benchmark.
On matters of diversity, it will challenge FTSE 100 companies that do not have at least one director of colour on the board, unless there are mitigating factors, or plans have been disclosed to satisfy this requirement. It will also engage FTSE 350 companies whose boards have less than one third female directors.