Shareholders Call on Bank of America to Disclose a Climate Transition Plan

Berkleley, USA – Today, Bank of America released preliminary vote results from its annual general meeting where 28.5% of shareholders voted in favor of a resolution seeking an actionable climate transition plan for achieving its 2030 net zero greenhouse gas emission reduction goals. The resolution was filed by investor representative As You Sow.

The banking sector has a critical role to play in addressing the climate crisis and aligning its financing activities with the Paris Agreement’s net zero goal. Although Bank of America has committed to aligning key sectors of its financing portfolio with net-zero targets, its plan for achieving those goals remains unclear. As indicated by the resolution, investors seek a plan for achieving the bank’s 2030 goals. This plan must provide more than general categories of action or simply rely on the success of individual clients’ transition plans.

“To reach its 2030 goals, Bank of America must have a plan in place that drives decision-making from the top down, starting with governance, and ending with banker decision-making on new financing,” said Danielle Fugere, president of As You Sow.

By operationalizing and translating net zero commitments into clearly disclosed and actionable strategies, Bank of America can assure investors and the public that it has a path forward to meet its 2030 goals.

The latest IPCC report warns that global emissions are not falling at the rate and speed necessary to avoid irreparable impacts from a quickly warming climate.

“This strong vote is a call to action,” said Fugere. “Bank of America has demonstrated leadership in setting 2030 targets aligned with global climate goals. Now comes the hard work of making its plan actionable.”

While other fossil fuel-related resolutions presented today at Bank of America’s annual meeting received lower votes, BofA must ultimately reconcile the issue of continuing to invest in new fossil fuel infrastructure that conflicts with achieving its net-zero goals. Banks must lead in moving financing away from high-emitting sources.

Bank of America has set 2030 reduction targets for its highest emitting portfolio sectors, including auto-manufacturing, energy, and power. The bank is a member of the Net-Zero Banking Alliance, whose signatories have committed to aligning its lending and investment portfolios with the Paris Agreement’s net zero by 2050 goal. Membership signals a clear willingness to meet global climate commitments. Putting forth a transition plan will demonstrate to investors that these commitments are being made in good faith.

“We look forward to continued progress from banking institutions such as Bank of America whose actions are inextricably tied to global net-zero targets and future climate action,” said Andrew Behar, CEO of As You Sow.