April 3 Exxon Mobil Corp, the world's
largest publicly traded oil company, has agreed to disclose more
information about the environmental risks of hydraulic
fracturing, the process known as fracking.
In an agreement with New York City's pension funds, which
control Exxon shares worth roughly $1.02 billion, the company
agreed to report on risks surrounding disposal of fracking waste
water, air pollution, methane emissions from oil and natural gas
wells, and other issues.
The New York City Comptroller's office, which controls the
city's pension funds, agreed as part of the deal to withdraw a
shareholder proposal that would have put the disclosure issue up
for a vote at the company's next annual meeting.
The comptroller's office essentially believes that without
such information, it cannot make an adequate investment decision
and thus part of the pension funds' investment could be in
"Corporate transparency in this arena is truly necessary for
assessing risk and ensuring that all stakeholders have the
information they need to make informed decisions," Scott
Stringer, the city's comptroller, said in a statement.
Last year a similar shareholder proposal received support
from roughly 30 percent of shares cast at Exxon's annual
An Exxon spokesman was not immediately available to comment
The environmental group As You Sow, along with several
religious orders, had joined the comptroller's office in filing
the initial shareholder resolution.
Last month Exxon agreed to report on how it views the risks
climate change could post to the value of its assets.
(Reporting by Ernest Scheyder; Editing by Leslie Adler)