Investment managers and other investors want 14 more companies to make it clear they do not support the stance of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) against pending cap-and-trade legislation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The group wrote letters to the companies asking them to withdraw their membership, publicly disclose their disagreement or ask the associations to refund the portion of their dues used to lobby on the issue. The companies that received the letters are Air Products & Chemicals, Alcoa, American Electric Power, Boeing Company, Caterpillar, Cummins, Deere & Co., DTE Energy, Entergy, Ford Motor Co., General Motors Corporation, Lockheed Martin, Whirlpool and Xerox Corporation.

The letters applaud the companies for the leadership they've taken on environmental issues, particularly climate change, but say their memberships in the chamber or NAM send a contradictory message. According to the letters, this "misalignment of positions" poses serious business and reputational risks to the companies. The chamber's and NAM's "position and active voice on climate change is especially embarrassing for numerous members who are proactive leaders on reducing greenhouse gases and limiting their negative impact with respect to climate change," it said.

Recently, Apple, Exelon, PG&E, PNM Resources, Duke Energy and Nike resigned from the chamber or NAM or left the chamber's board over the associations' strident opposition to pending climate legislation. The chamber's president and CEO recently told Business Week in an article published October 9 that he thinks some cap-and-trade systems would work but not what's proposed in the bill now pending in Congress. The NAM says in a statement that the Boxer-Kerry bill will increase costs for manufacturers and consumers.

"As the manager of environmentally responsible mutual funds, Green Century strongly believes that climate change is a serious threat to our planet and our economy. We are at a critical crossroads between a polluting, dangerous path and a clean energy future," said Emily Stone, shareholder advocate for Green Century Capital Management, one of the investment managers that signed the letter. "We believe it is now more important than ever for companies to take clear action to preserve their leadership roles on this critical issue by distancing themselves from the antagonistic lobbying of business associations such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers."

Investors and investment-focused organizations that signed the letter include: As You Sow, The Basilian Fathers of Toronto, Boston Common Asset Management, Catholic Health East, Catholic Healthcare West, The Center for Political Accountability, The Christopher Reynolds Foundation, Clean Yield Asset Management, The Congregation of St. Joseph, Corporate Governance, Domini Social Investments, Dominican Sisters of Hope, Edward W. Hazen Foundation, Green America, Green Century Capital Management, First Affirmative Financial Network LLC, The Home Missioners of America (Glenmary Home Missioners), JOLT Coalition for Responsible Investments, JPS Global Investments, Marianist Province of the U.S., Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers, Maryknoll Sisters, Mercy Investment Program, Inc., MMA Praxis Mutual Funds, Natural Investments LLC, Newground Social Investment, North American Passionist JPIC Office, The Northwest Coalition for Responsible Investment, Oxfam America, Pax World Management Corp, Portfolio 21, The Russell Family Foundation, Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, Sisters of Mercy Regional Community of Detroit Charitable Trust, The Sisters of Notre Dame of Toledo (Ohio), The Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, Social(k), Strategic Counsel on Corporate Accountability, The Sustainability Group at Loring, Wolcott & Coolidge, Trillium Asset Management Corporation, Unitarian Universalist Association, Ursuline Sisters of Tildonk, U.S. Province and Walden Asset Management.