We have expanded the list of climate policies we assess company engagement with to incorporate land-use related policy, referring to legislative or regulatory measures to enhance and protect ecosystems and land where carbon is being stored. Assessments under this category are currently underweighted in terms of their contribution to the overall company metrics. This weighting will be progressively increased over the next 6 months.
We adjusted the terminology used to describe the queries running down the left-hand side of our scoring matrix and added additional explanatory text to the info-boxes. This has no impact on the scores and methodology. It has been done following user feedback to improve clarity.
Climate Lobbying Overview: The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) has engaged negatively with multiple forms of US climate policy, while strongly supporting the ongoing role of fossil fuels in the US energy mix. Notably, it opposed both the US Build Back Better and Inflation Reduction Act. In addition to legislative and regulatory lobbying, the association has an active legal program for influencing court cases in its members' interests.
Top-line Messaging on Climate Policy: The NAM has offered support for limiting warming to 2 degrees, as evident in a piece titled “The Promise Ahead” published in January 2021. The same paper offers some support for the Paris Agreement. However, during negotiations over the Build Back Better Act in September 2021, the NAM strongly opposed the bill due to its revenue provisions, as reported by Politico.
Engagement with Climate-Related Regulations: The NAM has opposed various forms of climate policy in the US. While it has offered some high-level support for GHG emissions targets, it remains opposed to strict regulation. CEO Jay Timmons, for example, appeared to support President Biden’s announcement of the GHG emissions reduction target for 2030 in an April 2021 press release. In a coalition letter in February 2022, it urged the US Foreign Relations Committee to ratify the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal protocol in order to phase down the production and use of HFCs. However, in a detailed comment to the EPA in January 2022, the NAM was highly critical of its proposed methane regulation, stating the need for maximum state flexibility in standard-setting and compliance. Previously, in June 2021, the NAM urged the EPA in a formal comment not to rescind the Benefit-Cost rule, a rule with the potential to obstruct or delay the enactment of GHG emissions regulation.
Positioning on Energy Transition: The NAM has largely maintained a negative position on policies related to the energy transition. In an August 2022 press release, NAM CEO Jay Timmons expressed “staunch” opposition to the Inflation Reduction Act due to its tax provisions, without commenting on its climate measures. In June 2022, the NAM signed a joint letter to President Biden urging the government to adopt the next Five-Year program for offshore oil and gas production. The letter highlights the Ukraine crisis as an example of the necessity of energy leadership, and uses the crisis as justification for the expansion of fossil fuel production. The NAM submitted another letter in June 2022 to President Biden advocating for the expedition of the permitting process for onshore and offshore oil and gas production, suggesting that such would strengthen domestic fuel supplies and support the production of electricity – a position that does not align with IPCC recommendations to urgently phase out fossil fuels.
In a joint comment submitted to the Office of Management and Budget in June 2021, NAM calls for a weakened NEPA permitting process through its opposition to the consideration of social cost of GHGs in NEPA analyses, stating that there is too much uncertainty in calculating the social cost. This follows similar positioning in January 2020, with CEO Jay Timmons supporting the Trump administration’s decision to roll back the National Environmental Policy Act in the interest of reducing “burdensome delays.”