UBS Group’s climate transition plan won majority support at the Swiss bank’s April 6 annual meeting despite facing pushback from a notable number of investors.

UBS’ “say on climate” proposal won 84% support, according to Insightia Voting data.

Ahead of UBS’ annual meeting, Ethos urged investors to vote against the bank’s transition strategy, arguing that the plan’s new reduction targets cover less than 50% of UBS’s lending portfolio and exclude key areas such as capital markets underwriting.

UBS’ plan marks the lowest approval rate for any management climate transition plan put forward since the “say on climate” campaign’s founding.

The Children’s Investment Fund (TCI) founded the “say on climate” campaign in late 2020. The campaign encourages companies to disclose their decarbonization strategies and subject them to an annual advisory shareholder vote, as a method to foster corporate and shareholder engagement on climate risk.

The campaign was swiftly adopted by European and Australian issuers and shareholders but some investors have expressed concerns regarding the campaign heightening the risk of greenwashing.

“Some of the ‘say on climate’ proposal results last season did indeed mean that our fears were fully realized, with some objectively bad climate plans winning upwards of 90%+ support,” Courteney Keatinge, senior director, ESG, at Glass Lewis told Insightia Monthly in March.

Climate plans will also be subject to a vote at the April and May meetings of leading European banks, including HSBC, Barclays, and Credit Suisse. These plans have also faced significant criticism from investors for failing to adopt sufficient robust decarbonization targets.

Insightia explores shareholder responses to insufficient climate transition plans in more detail in this week’s Activism & Voting this Week newsletter.