Ahead of Toyota’s Annual General Meeting, California and New York Pensions Tell the Automaker to Clean Up Its Act


Larisa Manescu, Clean Transportation for All, larisa.manescu@sierraclub.org 
Ginny Cleaveland, Fossil-Free Finance, ginny.cleaveland@sierraclub.org 


CA & NY – Ahead of Toyota’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) later this month, two of the nation’s largest pension systems – California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS) and the Office of the New York City Comptroller – just voted against the re-election of Toyota Chairman Akio Toyoda and in support of a resolution urging Toyota to improve disclosure of its lobbying on climate change. 

Under Toyoda’s leadership as CEO, the global automaker lagged in the transition to electric vehicles. In March, over 50 consumer and environmental organizations sent a letter to Toyota’s new CEO urging him to commit the company to phasing out all internal combustion engine vehicles in the U.S and Europe by 2030 and globally by 2035, and to end Toyota’s long history of anti-climate lobbying. 

A new International Council of Clean Transportation report that rates the world’s 20 largest automakers in their transition to zero-emission vehicles shows Toyota lagging on a variety of metrics, including its current EV offerings and its strategic vision for a decarbonized future. 

“All eyes are on Toyota going into its annual general meeting as new leadership takes the helm of the company. We’ve spent years advocating for Toyota to clean up its dirty act on climate, and there’s an immense opportunity right now for the automaker to shift course and go all in on electric vehicles. The pressure is on,” said Katherine García, Director of the Sierra Club’s Clean Transportation for All campaign.

“Public pension funds have a fiduciary obligation to mitigate the risks that climate change poses to their beneficiaries. Holding laggard companies accountable by voting against management and supporting shareholder resolutions that urge corporations to clean up their act is an essential part of that responsibility. We urge other public pension funds across the country to follow the lead of the New York City Comptroller and CalPERS in voting the right way at Toyota,” said Ben Cushing, Director of the Sierra Club’s Fossil-Free Finance campaign.

About the Sierra Club

The Sierra Club is America’s largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization, with millions of members and supporters. In addition to protecting every person's right to get outdoors and access the healing power of nature, the Sierra Club works to promote clean energy, safeguard the health of our communities, protect wildlife, and preserve our remaining wild places through grassroots activism, public education, lobbying, and legal action. For more information, visit www.sierraclub.org.