Boston, May 18, 2022 – At The Home Depot’s annual meeting on Thursday, shareholders will vote on a proposal from Green Century° calling on the world’s largest home improvement retailer to increase “its efforts to eliminate deforestation and the degradation of primary forests in its supply chains.”
“The Home Depot is lagging behind its peers in ensuring that it is not purchasing wood associated with deforestation or harvested from the world’s last remaining unlogged forests, also known as primary forests,” said Green Century president Leslie Samuelrich. “The Home Depot’s customers deserve assurance that the plywood they are buying isn’t coming at the expense of old growth trees and habitat for endangered species.”
As anyone who’s visited the Home Depot has seen, the company is a major buyer of wood. Recently, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) criticized the retailer for the inadequacy of its wood sourcing policies. Nevertheless, The Home Depot’s board of directors has recommended that shareholders vote against Green Century’s proposal.
Green Century recently withdrew a similar shareholder proposal filed with Lowe’s* after The Home Depot’s largest competitor agreed to comply with the proposal’s request by disclosing the impact of its sourcing on primary forests and developing a strategy to mitigate potential negative outcomes associated with its wood sourcing for the climate, biodiversity and human rights.
“This proposal gives The Home Depot’s shareholders an opportunity to urge the company to use its buying power to encourage truly sustainable forestry practices,” said Green Century shareholder advocate Thomas Peterson. “To mitigate global warming and limit biodiversity collapse, we must end deforestation as soon as possible and preserve the world’s remaining primary forests. The company’s opposition to this proposal and its limited forest risk disclosures leave investors concerned that management is not taking the material financial risks associated with deforestation seriously.”
While global deforestation continues at an alarming pace, investor support for deforestation-related shareholder proposals has increased dramatically in recent years. Green Century proposals on deforestation earned record-breaking majority votes at Procter & Gamble’s* annual meeting in 2020 and at major agribusiness Bunge’s* annual meeting in 2021.
About Green Century Capital Management
°Green Century Capital Management, Inc. (Green Century) is the investment advisor to the Green Century Funds (The Funds). The Green Century Funds are a family of fossil fuel-free, environmentally-responsible mutual funds. Green Century Capital Management hosts an award-winning and in-house shareholder advocacy program and is the only mutual fund company in the U.S. wholly owned by environmental and public health nonprofit organizations.
*As of March 31, 2022, The Home Depot, Inc. comprised 0.96%, 1.54%, and 0.00%; Lowe’s Companies, Inc. comprised 0.00%, 0.67%, and 0.00%; The Procter & Gamble Company comprised 0.63%, 1.82%, and 0.00%; and Bunge Limited comprised 0.00%, 0.08%, and 0.00% of the Green Century Balanced Fund, the Green Century Equity Fund and the Green Century International Index Fund, respectively. As of the same date, other securities mentioned were not held in the portfolios of any of the Green Century Funds. References to specific securities, which will change due to ongoing management of the Funds, should not be construed as a recommendation by the Funds, their administrator, or their distributor.
You should carefully consider the Fund’s investment objectives, risks, charges, and expenses before investing. To obtain a Prospectus that contains this and other information about the Funds please visit www.greencentury.com, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 1-800-934-7336. Please read the Prospectus carefully before investing.
Stocks will fluctuate in response to factors that may affect a single company, industry, sector, country, region or the market as a whole and may perform worse than the market. Foreign securities are subject to additional risks such as currency fluctuations, regional economic and political conditions, differences in accounting methods, and other unique risks compared to investing in securities of U.S. issuers. Bonds are subject to a variety of risks including interest rate, credit, and inflation risk. A sustainable investment strategy which incorporates environmental, social and governance criteria may result in lower or higher returns than an investment strategy that does not include such criteria.
This information has been prepared from sources believed reliable. The views expressed are as the date of this writing and are those of the Advisor to the Funds.
The Green Century Funds are distributed by UMB Distribution Services, LLC. 235 W Galena Street, Milwaukee, WI 53212. 5/22