Toyota has shown signs it is coming under investor pressure to review its climate and sustainability policies, after a number of high-profile investors took aim at the Japanese manufacturer for downplaying climate risks.
Toyota has since confirmed that it will conduct a review of its climate and sustainability policies in order to meet the guidelines of the Paris Climate Accord and its overall environment goals.
The manufacturer has said that actions will be taken by the end of the year to ensure investor pressure is calmed, and its climate and sustainability policies have been updated.
The news comes via a report from Reuters, who says that Toyota “came under scrutiny after siding with the Trump administration in 2019 in a bid to bar the state of California from setting its own fuel-efficiency rules.”
Toyota has issued a statement saying that the company “will review public policy engagement activities through our company and industry associations to confirm they are consistent with the long-term goals of the Paris Agreement.”
Toyota added that it intends to “strive to provide more information so that our stakeholders can understand our effort to achieve carbon neutrality.”
A Toyota spokesperson has confirmed that lobbying for and against certain legislation around the globe fits under the category of “public policy engagement activities,” but did not address reports of investors putting pressure on Toyota to make more environmentally-friendly moves.
Reuter’s report says that a group of four investment funds, with more than $235 billion under management are currently “pressuring” Toyota ahead of the company’s annual shareholder meeting in six-weeks time.
Toyota Under Investor Pressure to Review Climate Policies
That report states that the four investors are aiming to “draw a line under its lobbying against international efforts to prevent catastrophic global warming.”
Jens Munch Holst, the chief executive officer of Danish fund AkademikerPension has told reporters that “this move must not be a PR exercise, but instead, signal a clear end to its role in negative climate lobbying which has given it a laggard status.”
“Right up until now, the company has repeatedly undermined climate action, from opposing the U.K. government’s ban on internal combustion engines by 2030 to opposing car fuel economy standards in the U.S.,” he continued to explain.
The fund said that it had “escalated via intense direct engagement” Toyota about its concerns over the company’s move to lobby against certain policies.