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Builder DR Horton Rejects GHG Cap

Shareholders of home builder D.R. Horton voted down a call to adopt greenhouse gas reduction goals.

The Nathan Cummings Foundation, which holds 500 shares of Horton stock, proposed that the board of directors adopt quantitative goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from products and operations, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram said.

The foundation proposed that the goals be based on available technologies for reducing emissions, and that the board report back to shareholders by the end of the year on its plans for meeting the targets.

“Over the last few years, a number of D.R. Horton’s competitors have made a lot of progress on this front,” said Bill Maxwell, representing the Cummings Foundation. “D.R. Horton’s board seems to think that consumers will not necessarily pay for more energy-efficient homes, but the foundation would like to point out that energy-efficient homes do not have to be more expensive and that many companies actually see the energy efficiencies of their homes as a big selling point.”

But the board of directors unanimously recommended that shareholders reject the proposal, and it was supported by under a quarter of voting shares.

The company said it recognizes the importance of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and that it uses energy-efficient products and practices in the homes it builds. One of its most important environmental initiatives is its use of Energy Star-approved vendors, the company said.

Horton has reported a $245.1 million profit in fiscal year 2010, which ended Sept. 30, the Star-Telegram said.

It was the company’s first annual profit since 2006, the peak of the residential market.

Horton’s shares (ticker: DHI) closed up 0.5 percent at $12.91 in trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday, the day of the vote.

In a sustainability ranking of the country’s top ten publicly traded home builders by Calvert Investments, D.R. Horton ranked sixth. The average score was just 15 out of 100.

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