Goldman Sachs Asset Management | Environmental justice risk assessment at Goldman Sachs Asset Management

14.21% votes in favour
AGM date
Previous AGM date
Proposal number
Resolution details
Company ticker
Resolution ask
Conduct due diligence, audit or risk/impact assessment
ESG theme
  • Environment
ESG sub-theme
  • Fossil fuel financing
  • Public health
Type of vote
Shareholder proposal
Filer type
Company sector
Company HQ country
United States
Resolved clause
Resolved: Shareholders request that the Goldman Sachs Board of Directors conduct a rigorous
assessment of material risks and opportunities related to the environmental justice impacts of its
energy and power sector financing and underwriting and disclose the results, at reasonable
expense and omitting proprietary and privileged information.
Whereas clause
Whereas: Environmental justice examines disparities in how people are exposed to
environmental benefits and harms, which can have material implications for investors.
The United Nations has recognized that all people have a right to a clean, healthy and
sustainable environment.1 Fossil fuel development poses substantial risks to this and other
human rights, and has been linked to significantly elevated rates of cancers, and air, soil, and
water contamination for nearby residents.2 These outcomes disproportionately affect children,
workers, and people who are Black, Indigenous, have low income, or live in the Global South.3
Meanwhile, a disproportionate portion of the 17 million Americans exposed to the negative
consequences of fossil fuel production are Black.4 Since 2016, Goldman Sachs has provided
over $143 billion in financing to fossil fuel companies.5
Goldman Sachs has also developed a framework to “put climate transition and inclusive growth
at the forefront of” its work with clients.6 However, this transition carries several workforce7 and
environmental justice risks. Research has found that economic and workforce benefits of the
energy transition accrue unequally along lines of race and ethnicity, regardless of income or
education.8 Most minerals required for electric vehicle, wind turbine, and battery production are
concentrated in the Global South, where local people bear environmental harms associated with
minerals extraction, and where climate change threatens production collapse.

9 Resultant civic
unrest, loss of social license, legislative or regulatory actions, and systemic risk of global failure
of a transition can lead to stranded assets and reputational harm.
These environmental justice risks are not effectively addressed or managed in Goldman Sachs’
policies and reporting. Rigorous assessment and disclosure of these risks would enhance the
bank’s risk management framework, improve its reputation, and advance its stated goals.
In recent years, Goldman Sachs has faced regulatory action and public scrutiny regarding its
sustainability practices and disclosures. In 2022, the bank’s asset management subsidiary
incurred a $4 million penalty to settle SEC charges for sustainability-related policies and
procedures failures.10 The bank has committed to help reduce racial disparities,11 to “protect, preserve and promote human rights around the world,”12 and shared its view that “companies' management of environmental and related social risks and opportunities may affect long-term corporate performance.”13 By implementing this proposal, the bank can advance its commitments and deliver value to shareholders.



Supporting statement
Supporting statement: At the Board and management’s discretion, Proponents suggest that
“material risks and opportunities” encompass both enterprise and systemic considerations, and
that outcomes and recommendations from the assessment be integrated in a revised version of
the bank’s Environmental Policy Framework.

How other organisations have declared their voting intentions

Organisation name Declared voting intentions Rationale
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