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Shareholder Engagement in Action

Chevron & its Global Problems

Using shareowner rights to promote fairness, justice, and resilience.

Chevron has ignored shareholder concerns about its actions around the globe, but particularly regarding its liability for significant dumping of toxic oil waste in the Amazon region of Ecuador – dumping that has sickened tens of thousands of indigenous people and poisoned rivers, streams, and rainforest.  

Since 2013 Newground Social Investment has placed at least one, and often two, shareholder proposals in the Chevron proxy for a vote of all stockholders. These proposals call for common-sense governance reforms designed to make the company more accountable, responsive, and transparent – as a means of bringing resolution to its Ecuador issues, addressing lack of appropriate climate change planning, and to prevent future human rights and Superfund cleanup-type liabilities around the globe.  

In 2022, human rights attorney Steven Donziger is again a free man, having completed 993 days of home detention and incarceration based on charges arising from testimony by Chevron's key witness – testimony later recanted under oath and admitted to be false.  

  • The number of Nobel Laureates signing a letter that calls for the U.S. Dept. of Justice to investigate judicial impropriety in Chevron's proceedings against Mr. Donziger's has risen to 68.

  • An exaustive compendium of legal claims against Chevron, published by Dr. Nan Greer, became the subject of a U.S. House Oversight Committee hearing.  Dr. Greer has documented $50.5 billion in legal claims against Chevron arising from actions initiated in 31 countries around the world.

  • These items are detailed in a formal filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and referenced in appeals by Scottie Thompson & Lucy Lawless to Chevron stockholders to vote FOR the Independent Chair proposal in the 2023 & 2022 proxies:

Scottie Thompson Appeals to Chevron Stockholders 2023

Scottie Thompson

Actor & Advocate

Scottie urges Chevron shareholders to vote FOR proposal #12 on the 2023 proxy that will benefit shareholders, help indigenous people in the Amazon rainforest, and curb climate change pollution.

Click to view on Vimeo or on YouTube

Lucy Lawless Appeals to Chevron Stockholders 2022

Lucy Lawless

Actor & Advocate

Lucy urges Chevron stockholders to vote FOR Proposal #10 – because it will help indigenous people in the Amazonian rainforest of Ecuador, clean up devastating pollution, and prevent future human rights abuses.

Click to view on Vimeo or on YouTube

In 2021 Chevron challenged both proposals before the SEC, seeking to have them 'omitted' (blocked) from appearing in the proxy, but the SEC ruled in favor of Newground and against Chevron's legal maneuvers.

A host of prominent people and organizations, including:

  • Actor/advocate Susan Sarandon.

  • Young leaders of the Economy of Francesco (chartered by Pope Francis in 2019).
  • Exiled Burmese human rights activist Khin Ohmar.
Each volunteered to speak for Newground on behalf of these proposals at the virtual-only shareholder meeting.

These are their voices:

Voices of the World to Chevron

The Economy of Francesco

Chartered by Pope Francis in 2019

"Voices of the World to Chevron" details 1 of 2 shareholder proposals to the oil giant in 2021 that address Climate Change, Rainforest Pollution in Ecuador, and the Company's support of a Genocidal Military Government in Myanmar.

Burmese Human Rights Activist Addresses Chevron

Khin Ohmar, Progressive Voices Myanmar

Exiled Burmese Human Rights Activist

Ohmar details Chevron's deadly support of a genocidal Military Government in Myanmar, Rainforest Pollution in Ecuador, and Judicial Abuse of the Ecuadorians' attorney Steven Donziger.

Susan Sarandon Challenges Chevron

Susan Sarandon

Actor & Advocate

Susan challenges Chevron to address Climate Change, Rainforest Destruction in Ecuador, the Company's support of a Genocidal Military Government in Myanmar, and judicial abuse of the Ecuadorians' attorney Steven Donziger.

In 2020, three prominent figures – actor Alec Baldwin, Nobel Peace Laureate Jody Williams, and musician Roger Waters (co-founder Pink Floyd) – volunteered to speak for Newground on behalf of these proposals at the virtual-only shareholder meeting.  

These are their voices: 

The Harvey Weinstein of Petroleum Companies

Alec Baldwin

Actor and Producer

Calling Chevron "the Harvey Weinstein of petroleum companies" Alec details why Chevron’s controversial RICO victory against human rights lawyer Steven Donziger does not protect it from liability.

Nobel Laureates Challenge "The Chevron Way"

Jody Williams

Nobel Peace Laureate (1997)

Joins 28 other Nobel Laureates to call on Chevron to address its pollution in Ecuador, commenting on the stark variance between company actions and its Chevron Way code of conduct.
(68 signatories as-of early 2022)

Do The Right Thing

Roger Waters

Musician, co-founder Pink Floyd

Visited the Ecuadorian Amazon in 2018, observed firsthand the Chevron-Texaco waste pits which leach deadly chemicals into the local drinking water, and calls on Chevron to "do the right thing."

Congressional Letter to U.S. Attorney General

6 members of Congress wrote to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland to express “Deep Concern” that Steven Donziger’s house arrest is tied to his successful work against Chevron.  They request that the Justice Department investigate and take over the case of Cheveron vs Donziger.  Full letter linked in button below, here is the Congressional press release.

Read Letter

special meeting proposal 2021

The Special Meeting proposal discusses the risk of Ecuadorian liability and the need for greater shareholder voice.

Read Proposal

independent chair proposal 2021

The Independent Chair proposal highlights how lack of independent oversight may contribute to the Ecuador crisis & climate risk.

Read Proposal

Press Release

Newground's announcement
of actions & outcomes
at Chevron's 2021 annual
shareholder meeting. 

Read Press Release

Nobel Laureates Statement

68 Nobel Prize Laureates wrote the U.S. Attorney General to challenge Chevron's action against Steven Donziger, who successfully represented victims of the company's Ecuadorian rainforest pollution.

Read Letter

With special thanks to:

    Leif Utne
    Nick Gatti

for their consummate expertise
and for stepping up
when deadlines were close 

What makes Newground different?

NPR-KUOW feature on Newground: 

"Getting McDonald's to the Table"

A sophisticated ESG* approach that emphasizes shareholder engagement.

Nationally recognized for our unique brand of responsible impact investing, Newground appreciates and supports a client’s values – as expressed through selective ESG portfolio management, community investment, and shareholder engagement.

ESG Portfolio Management seeks companies with responsible environmental, social, and governance practices, while avoiding companies whose questionable practices create material portfolio risk.

Community Investment changes lives on the ground by providing necessary capital and banking services to people and communities who are routinely underserved, if not excluded.

Shareholder Engagement, which few advisors do, uses active shareholder ownership to call on companies to embrace transparency, equity, and inclusion – which transforms corporate behavior over time.

* ESG = Environmental, Social & Governance strategies