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Wanted: The big change mindset

Business Green - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 7:05pm

Stephanie Draper of Forum for the Future reveals how systems thinking could help sustainability executives deliver the real corporate transformations they crave


Categories: Climate Change News

Siemens halts work on Skerries tidal array

Business Green - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 7:05pm

Decision comes two months after company had £10m government grant withdrawn


Categories: Climate Change News

Authorities stop 'greatest destroyers of the Brazilian Amazon rainforest'

Mongabay Rainforest News - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 3:31pm
A criminal organization involved in the illicit deforestation of large portions of Brazil's forests has been stopped, with at least six members of the organization arrested as of Aug. 28 and warrants issued for others. The gang has been accused of committing crimes worth over $220 million.
Categories: REDD and Rainforests

Blue Ocean Film Festival Presented to the People of Samoa by the United Nations

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm

(Apia, Samoa) 26 August 2014 – As a special gift to the people of Samoa for hosting the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States, the United Nations is sponsoring a four-day film festival in partnership with the United States-based BLUE Ocean Film Festival and the National University of Samoa.

 “We are pleased to support this unique initiative between BLUE and the National University of Samoa,” said Christian Clark, United Nations Spokesperson for the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States. “Media has the power to catalyze important discussions. We hope this festival will help inspire dialogue between the Samoan people and arriving delegations, media and others attending this important meeting.”

 The Conference will focus the world’s attention on a group of countries that remain a special case for sustainable development in view of their unique and particular vulnerabilities. The meeting seeks a renewed political commitment to address the special needs and vulnerabilities of small islands and aims to identify opportunities for sustainable development of those states, particularly through the strengthening of partnerships between small islands and the international community. 

 “We are honored to support the Third International Conference on Small Island Developing States, and to partner with the United Nations for our films,” said Deborah Kinder, Co-founder and CEO of BLUE. “This supports our mission to provide global educational outreach that inspires people everywhere to connect with ocean conservation, and to serve as a catalyst for discussion.”

 The United Nations has selected a number of different films for BLUE On Tour to engage a broad range of people, from experts to governments, on the issues surrounding ocean and climate change. This is the first time that the UN has partnered with BLUE, which was chosen for its wide range of ocean films.

The four-day BLUE On Tour film festival will be held at the National University of Samoa in Apia, Samoa on 26-29 August at lunchtime in Room D-210.

 

Film Schedule: UPDATE: Films will also be shown Friday afternoon

 Tuesday, 26 August - Planet Ocean - Part I, Hope Productions

 Wednesday, 27 August - Planet Ocean - Part II, Hope Productions

Thursday, 28 August - World's Largest Marine Park, Khalid bin Sultan Living Oceans, Foundation: Mapping the Blue; Selected Shorts, UNEP, The Krill is Gone

 Friday, 29 August - Saving Our Tuna, UNDP; Swains Island, Jean Michel Cousteau, Ocean Futures Society

 For more information regarding this event, please visit: http://www.blueoceanfilmfestival.org/blue_on_tou_samoa.htm

 

Media Contacts:

 

Samoa

 

BLUE On Tour

Charlotte Vick, charlotte.vick@gmail.com

UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs

Diane Loughran, loughran@un.org

 

New York

 UN Department of Public Information

 Wynne Boelt, boelt@un.org

 

BLUE On Tour Samoa media inquiries (USA)

Martha Shaw mailto:Martha@earthadvertising.com    

 

Grow-Trees.com and Vodafone India to Plant 300,000 trees in Kanha-Pench to develop India's First Private Wildlife Corridor

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm
Grow-Trees.com and Vodafone India to plant 300,000 trees in Kanha-Pench to develop India’s First Private Wildlife Corridor  
  •  ·        Tree planting to benefit rural communities with livelihood opportunities
  • ·         Provide enhanced forest cover linking Kanha - Pench National Parks to facilitate wildlife movement, enlarge wildlife habitats and improve water catchment
  • ·         Help Vodafone India to offset the carbon footprint generated by its offices across the country

 

Bhopal, 27 August, 2014:  Vodafone India, one of India’s leading telecom services providers, and Grow-Trees.com, the exclusive Indian Planting Partner for United Nation’s Environment Program’s Billion Tree Campaign, today announced the formal launch of their join initiative to create India’s first private wildlife corridor. This corridor is being developed between Kanha-Pench wildlife reserves by planting 3,00,000 trees over a 3-year period. The trees will be planted over 100 hectares of forest land between the two reserves.    To formally launch this plantation drive, Mr. Rohit Adya, External Affairs Director, Vodafone India and Mr. Ashish Chandra, Business Head – MP&CG, Vodafone India, handed over a sapling to Mr. Bikrant Tiwary, CEO, Grow-Trees.com.   Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Rohit Adya, External Affairs Director, Vodafone India, said, “Vodafone India is committed to supporting sustainable initiatives that benefit all – the organisation, the community and the environment. With this unique project, we will be able to offset 33 million kg of carbon footprint generated by our offices every year for 3-years. In addition, we will be able to support livelihood opportunities, enable reforestation and create a corridor between Kanha and Pench to facilitate habitat connectivity in tiger breeding areas.”   Elaborating on the significance of this initiative, Mr Ashish Chandra, Business Head – MP&CG, Vodafone India, said, “Madhya Pradesh is endowed with rich and diverse forest resources. With 9 national parks and 25 wildlife sanctuaries, almost 25% of the state is covered with forests.  Home to a large tribal population and an attractive tourist destination, these forests provide a source of income to several thousands. This initiative with Grow-Trees.com is our way of supporting conservation of an importance natural resource and means of livelihood.”    This project will create about 25,000 workdays of direct jobs mainly for women and tribals inhabiting the area in addition to supporting several allied livelihood generating activities such as farming, fruit and honey gathering etc. on a sustained basis. The site is in Sijhora Range and would be jointly protected by three villages - Majhipur, Jogisoda and Chandiya. A variety of trees, including Karani, Harra, Baheda, Bamboo, Khamer, Ladiya, Mango and Amla, that are local to the region will be planted. Saplings of these are already being grown in the special nurseries funded by Grow-Trees.com.    Speaking on the occasion, Mr Bikrant Tiwary, CEO, Grow-Trees.com, said, “Approximately 45% of India's land is degraded primarily due to deforestation, unsustainable agricultural practices, mining and excessive groundwater extraction. More than two thirds of this can be regenerated and our endeavour is to facilitate this by providing planting opportunities to individual and corporate customers. We are delighted to have Vodafone India as our corporate partner to support this novel project of wildlife corridors for enlarging wildlife habitats. The size and scale of this private reforestation initiative is the biggest till date in the country.  The planting process on site will be led by our on ground partner FES.”   About Kanha and Pench Tiger reserves  Kanha Tiger Reserve in Madhya Pradesh and Pench Tiger Reserve straddling Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra are important habitats for the tiger population in central India. As tigers need large home ranges to ensure population viability, it is important to ensure habitat connectivity between different breeding areas. The Kanha– Pench corridor therefore gains high importance in the efforts to save the tiger and other wildlife. Such a corridor is vital for the long term survival and viability of tigers as it connects smaller tiger populations in Pench to larger populations such as at Kanha. Without these linkages tiger populations isolated within individual tiger reserves face a higher risk of extinction due to poaching and loss in genetic vigour over generations. A tiger straying out of a forest also has to confront a range of challenges such as hostile villagers, retaliatory poisoning for livestock kills, poaching, and electrocution by live wires, apart from road and rail traffic that cause further fragmentation of forest cover.  The trees planted will help improve the forest connectivity between Kanha and Pench and provide a sheltered corridor for tigers and animals to traverse between the two reserves. About Grow Trees  www.Grow-Trees.com gives companies and individuals the ability to plant trees from their computer to welcome new customers, celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, festivals or special occasions. Companies and individuals can send a personalized e-TreeCertificate with their message and logo or personal photograph. Trees are planted only on government and community lands with the objective of benefitting rural communities (through flowers, fruit, fuel and fodder), wildlife, improving water catchment areas, preventing soil erosion, reversing deforestation and fighting global warming by decarbonising the atmosphere. Grow-Trees was launched on World Environment Day, June 5, 2010. About 7,14,000 trees have been planted so far through the site in different projects across India by over 175 companies and thousands of individuals. About Vodafone India    Vodafone India is a 100% fully owned subsidiary of the Vodafone Group Plc. with operations across the country serving over 170 million customers. Commencing operations in 2007, Vodafone in its long-term commitment to India, has built a robust business in a highly competitive and price sensitive market. Vodafone India has been providing innovative, customer friendly and reliable products and services by continuously differentiating itself with a strong brand, best quality network, unique distribution and great customer service. This has been acknowledged at several prestigious forums where Vodafone India has won awards and recognition across different segments consistently.   Serving the needs of businesses, Vodafone Business Services provides total telecommunications (Voice and Data) solutions across mobility and wireline platforms. With the advantage of global expertise and experience and the knowledge of local markets, the business is run through the following verticals – Vodafone Global Enterprise (VGE), National Corporate (NC), Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) and a dedicated vertical for Government customers. Vodafone Business Services has steadily taken leadership position and is currently providing both mobile and wireline services to global and national businesses equipped with a robust and superior network infrastructure and a 24x7 NOC.   As a value based organization, Vodafone is committed to achieving the highest standards of Health, Safety and Well-being not only for its employees but also for all its partners. For creating such a responsible culture in the organization, the company received the Golden Peacock Occupational Health & Safety Award 2013. At Vodafone, sustainability is an integral part of the company’s mission and strategy, shaping the conduct of business every day. ‘Vodafone Cares’ is a platform to showcase all the good that Vodafone does for the society and has championed several projects and initiatives under the three pillars of Education, Environment and Empowerment. The Vodafone Foundation in India is committed to leverage the potential of mobile technology to address some of India’s most pressing challenges relating to education, health, equality and access. Its activities focus on the 4Ms of empowering individuals – m Health, m Education, m Agriculture and m Women.   Vodafone is one of the world's largest telecommunications companies with over 435 million customers in its controlled and jointly controlled markets as of 30 June 2014. Vodafone has equity interests in telecommunications operations in nearly 30 countries and around 50 partner networks worldwide. For more information, please visit: www.vodafone.com. Follow us on twitter @Vodafone IN   For Further Information, please contact: Vodafone India | indiacorpcomm@vodafone.com  Sonika Ladhi
Trainee Account Executive, Adfactors PR Social M  :  +91 90049 10684
D  :  +91 22 67574455
E   :  sonika.ladhi@adfactorspr.com
W :  www.adfactorspr.com   

Sustainalytics strenghtens corporate governance capabilities

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm

     

Sustainalytics strengthens corporate governance capabilities
Names New Head of Governance Research to Lead Development of Expanded Solution Set 

 

Amsterdam – August 27, 2014 – Sustainalytics, a leading provider of environmental, social and governance (ESG) research and analysis, announced today that the firm is making a new and significant investment in strengthening the corporate governance pillar of its ESG research and ratings solutions.

Gary Hewitt, former head of governance research at GMI Ratings, has joined the firm and will lead the development of an expanded suite of corporate governance research and data products designed to complement and integrate with Sustainalytics’ existing market-leading ESG research solutions. Previously, Mr. Hewitt led a research team at Watson Wyatt (now Towers Watson) and spent almost a decade with a leading proxy advisory firm, Institutional Shareholder Services, with a focus on executive compensation analysis and ratings development.

“With the increasingly important role ESG research is playing in investment decision-making and risk management, combined with the recent consolidation of ESG research providers, we firmly believe that institutional investors and ESG professionals desperately need a stable, independent and focused provider of research and analytics across the entire Environmental, Social and Governance spectrum,” said Michael Jantzi, CEO of Sustainalytics. “Gary Hewitt’s extensive corporate governance knowledge will allow us to deepen our corporate offering, create new services for our clients and expand our governance thought leadership.”

Celebrating its five year anniversary operating as Sustainalytics, a firm built on the bedrock of more than 20 years of previous ESG experience around the globe, the firm works with more than 250 asset owners, asset managers and related organizations globally to identify, analyze and assess the potential for material portfolio risk related to companies’ ESG practices.

“The scope of corporate governance practices and behaviors impacting a company’s long-term ability to create shareholder value continues to expand,” said Hewitt. “This is an exciting time in the field of corporate governance and an exciting time at Sustainalytics. The firm already offers quality products and advisory services across the ESG continuum. I look forward to working with my colleagues and with our clients to expand the solution set and to provide even more meaningful governance insights into the investment process.”

For more information please contact:
Marthe Reinette
marthe.reinette@sustainalytics.com  


 About Sustainalytics

Sustainalytics is an independent ESG research and analysis firm supporting investors around the world with the development and implementation of responsible investment strategies. The firm partners with institutional investors who integrate environmental, social and governance information and assessments into their investment decisions.

Headquartered in Amsterdam, Sustainalytics has offices in Boston, Bucharest, Frankfurt, London, New York, Paris, Singapore, Timisoara and Toronto, and representatives in Bogotá, Brussels, and Copenhagen. The firm has 175 staff members, including more than 100 analysts with varied multidisciplinary expertise and thorough understanding of more than 40 industries. In 2012 and 2013, Sustainalytics was voted best independent sustainable and responsible investment research firm in the Thomson Reuters Extel’s IRRI survey.
www.sustainalytics.com 

       

 

Copyright © 2014 Sustainalytics
Our address is De Entree 83, P.O. Box 22703, 1100 DE Amsterdam, Netherlands

If you do not wish to receive future e-mails, click here.
(You can also send your request to the Marketing and Communications department at the street address above.)

 

LARGEST SOCAP TO DATE WILL HOST OVER 180 PANELS AND CONVENE 2,500 ATTENDEES ON IMPACT INVESTING, SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND USING BUSINESS TO CREATE POSITIVE SOCIAL IMPACT

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm
LARGEST SOCAP TO DATE WILL HOST OVER 180 PANELS AND CONVENE 2,500 ATTENDEES ON IMPACT INVESTING, SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND USING BUSINESS TO CREATE POSITIVE SOCIAL IMPACT San Francisco, August 27, 2014 - This year’s annual Social Capital Markets conference (SOCAP) - SOCAP14, taking place from September 2-5 in San Francisco, will unite innovators in business, finance, tech, the sharing economy, health, philanthropy and more to advance environmental and social causes. A sector now surpassing $46 Billion under management and expected to explode when millennials focus on investing, SOCAP14 continues to grow this year making this the biggest SOCAP to date with 2,500 in attendance, many of whom are first-timers. Speakers range from the founders of today’s most-loved startups, to leading Fortune 100’s, to major venture capital investors, along with sector-specific leaders. Sponsors making announcements include American Express, Google.org and Omidyar Network. The conference’s theme “Igniting Vibrant Communities” encompasses the range of topics that will be covered and which combined lead to healthy and thriving communities, evidence of successful impact. “SOCAP’s mission has been to show the world that the market at the intersection of money and meaning - the place between giving and investing - is real, big and growing,” said Kevin Jones, Co-founder & Convener, Social Capital Markets. “The incredible interest and participation in SOCAP14 shows that we have expanded the possibilities for social entrepreneurs. The market is maturing and so are we.” Notable developments in the impact investing space this year show that every major sector is now engaged:  
  1. There’s critical mass among major financial institutions given their increased monetary commitments. SOCAP’s “Major Wealth Platforms in Impact” session features representatives of major financial institutions including Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank and others speaking about their increasing role.
  2. Government is turning to impact investing models in place of traditional aid. “Powering Africa Beyond the Grid” features a discussion on the potential of the most significant impact investing initiative by the U.S. government so far to not only accelerate energy access in Africa, but to bolster a new generation of clean, reliable energy companies.
  3. Foundations are placing more of their funding power into impact investing. More than 20 private corporations and foundations including Prudential Financial, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Ford Foundation and more announced a commitment of over $1.5 billion combined to new impact investments, timed with the launch of the United States National Advisory Board (NAB) on impact investing’s report: “Private Capital, Public Good: How Smart Federal Policy Can Galvanize Impact Investing – and Why It’s Urgent.” SOCAP14 will host a discussion on the outcomes of the report.
 Confirmed Speakers include:
  • •    Jacqueline Fuller, Director, Google.org
  • •    William H. Draper, Co-Chair, Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation
  • •    Dr. Rajiv Shah, Administrator, USAID
  • •    Dan Schulman, Group President of Enterprise Growth, American Express
  • •    Douglas Atkin, Global Head of Community, Airbnb
  • •    Danae Ringelmann, Founder and Chief Development Officer, Indiegogo
  • •    Leila Janah, Founder and CEO, Samasource
   Topics span:
  • •    Impact Investing
  • •    Health
  • •    Place-based Innovation
  • •    Financial Inclusion
  • •    Food Systems
  • •    Resilience
  • •    Sharing Economy
 This year, SOCAP expanded its brand presence with the success of partner events, SHARE: Catalyzing the Sharing Economy” presented with Peers, and “SOCAP Health: Creating the Market that Values Health” at The New York Academy of Medicine. SOCAP aims to grow the network of heart-centered investors, entrepreneurs, and social impact leaders and create experiences where changemakers can connect and present their ideas to a global audience. SOCAP started in 2008 with 600 attendees. This year the conference will host close to 2,500 people - many of whom are attending for the first time. SOCAP14 scholarships were awarded to 130 social entrepreneurs, the largest cohort yet, from around the world focusing on a range of issues.   Primary SOCAP14 Sponsors are:
•       American Express: Dan Schulman, Group President, Enterprise Growth and Neal Sample, CIO &  Chief Marketing Technologist, Enterprise Growth will discuss new initiatives to help improve financial inclusion in the         U.S.American Express will also host a screening of Spent: Looking For Change, a film about everyday Americans without the financial options most of us take for granted and the movement giving them renewed hope.
  • •   Omidyar Network: SOCAP will be the West Coast launch of Omidyar Network’s National Advisory Board on Impact investing. The board launched its first report “Private Capital, Public Good” in June.
  • •   Google.org: Google.org will showcase grant recipients selected from the organization’s recent Impact Challenge, which invited Bay Area nonprofits to submit their ideas for addressing the region’s most pressing problems. All 25 nonprofits will receive technical support from Google and one year of accelerator support through Impact Hub SF. Google.org will also be a part of a conversation on place-based innovation in the Bay area.
    Other notable sponsors include:
  • •    Herman Miller International
    • •   Halloran Philanthropies
    • •   Vodafone Americas Foundation
    • •   IDB
    • •   USAID
    • •   Wells Fargo
    • •   Prudential Financial Services
    • •   Deutsche Bank
    • •   Shell Foundation
About SOCAP  SOCAP (Social Capital Markets) is a world-renowned conference series dedicated to increasing the flow of capital toward social good. SOCAP's annual flagship event in San Francisco is the leading gathering for impact investors and social entrepreneurs. Our unique approach emphasizes cross-sector convening and gathers voices across a broad spectrum to catalyze unexpected connections. From the leading edge to established players, SOCAP brings together global innovators, investors, foundations, governments, institutions, and social entrepreneurs to build the world we want to leave to future generations. We actively seek out opportunities to accelerate the market at the intersection of money and meaning and, in pursuit of that goal, have convened more than 10,000 people since our founding in 2008. Media Contact:                                                                                Nicole Shore     (347) 627-0134 Nicole.Shore@zerotosixtycommunications.com

Report calls for step change on human rights conduct of business in Greater China region

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm
    Report calls for step change on human rights conduct of business in Greater China region Time to close the gap between international standards and actual practices by Chinese and foreign firms   International, 26 Aug 2014, Companies operating in Greater China – as well as Chinese firms operating overseas – must do more to respect human rights, according to a new report by an international human rights organization.
  The report, released today in Chinese and English by Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, looks at how companies in the region address human rights concerns. The Centre invites companies to respond publicly to allegations of misconduct in areas such as the treatment of workers, environmental pollution, and complicity by technology firms in surveillance or censorship activities. The briefing analyses 223 such approaches to companies.
The response rate from firms headquartered outside the region about their operations in Greater China is 77%. The response rate from firms headquartered in Greater China is 50%. Despite the lower response rate, when firms headquartered in Greater China do  respond, they are more likely to do so in detail, directly addressing each specific allegation point-by-point (52%), than non-Greater China firms (38%).
Privately owned Chinese firms are more likely to respond to allegations (56%) than state-owned companies (40%).
Lowell Chow, Greater China Researcher & Representative for BHRRC said:"It is time for business in the Greater China region to match principles on human rights – whether in internationally-recognized frameworks such as the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, or in their own codes of conduct – with their actions.
"An environment in which thousands of migrant workers toil in unsafe conditions, working long hours for less than a living wage, or when communities are pushed off their land for industrial projects with inadequate compensation, is unsustainable. There are now clear standards and guidance materials on human rights for business. Companies can no longer feign ignorance of their responsibility to respect human rights, or claim that they do not have the tools to help them do so."
  While a response by a company does not always lead to action, it does indicate the company’s willingness to engage publicly with concerns raised by human rights advocates, and provides a public statement that the company can be held to.
Overall, 23% of the firms headquartered in Greater China that responded either admit or partially admit the concerns raised – with 61% denying them (other firms said further investigations were needed, or referred to another business entity). For firms headquartered outside Greater China, these figures are 32% and 41% respectively.
Phil Bloomer, Executive Director, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, said: "We commend the practical steps that many companies are taking to avoid human rights abuses, either directly or through their supply chains – as well as the significant progress the Chinese government has made in lifting people out of poverty. Now all companies and the government must act quickly to ensure workers and communities affected by business activities are treated with dignity and respect."
  The briefing says that now is the time for action on business and human rights, given:
- Increasing activism by workers and by communities affected by industrial projects;

- Growing awareness among business that operating responsibly can help prevent and limit unrest and preserve reputation;

- A government concerned by growing inequality, environmental damage, and public disquiet; and

- The strong frameworks that are now available for companies and governments that want to do the right thing, including the UN Guiding Principles on Business & Human Rights, which the Chinese government has endorsed.

The briefing concludes with a clear set of recommendations for business and government. For companies, the briefing calls on them to adopt a clear public human rights policy; conduct a thorough impact assessment for their operations whether within China or overseas; implement clear management processes on human rights; report publicly on their progress; engage with critics; and remedy abuses.
It calls on government to develop a national action plan on business and human rights; strengthen the legal framework for victims of human rights abuses to seek and secure redress; enforce existing laws in the areas of labour rights and environmental protection; and strengthen human rights guidance for Chinese firms operating at home and overseas.
                1. To arrange interviews contact: Hong Kong: Lowell Chow, Greater China Researcher & Representative, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre – chow (at) business-humanrights.org / tel +86 14715496030 (mainland China) or +852 54896030 (Hong Kong)   New York: Annabel Short, Program Director, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre – short (at) business-humanrights.org / tel +1 212 546 9160   2. The full briefing paper including a record of company responses / non-responses can be downloaded from here: http://business-humanrights.org/en/greater-china-briefings
3. Greater China refers to mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong.   4. Four of the over 200 cases to which the Resource Centre has sought company responses relating to Greater China:

China Water Electric responded in detail to a report by the Cameroonian Network of Human Rights organizations. The report alleged human rights abuses associated with its work on the Lom Pangar dam in Cameroon – including cramped conditions and limited access to potable water at the workers’ camp, environmental contamination, and that Cameroonian workers receive worse treatment than Chinese workers. In its response the company described steps it had on access to drinking water (digging wells, monitoring water quality) and on addressing pollution, and it denied discrimination.
Royal Caribbean Cruises responded to Friends of the Earth Hong Kong’s campaign for it to use low sulphur oil when docked in the city, given the serious health impacts of sulphur dioxide pollution from cruise ships. The company responded that it would be switching to low-sulphur fuel when docked.
China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) ressponded to allegations of human rights abuses related to the company’s Shwe natural gas and Myanmar-China oil transport projects in Myanmar (including land confiscation without adequate compensation, damage to farmers’ and community land, military profiteering, and harm to fishing areas), detailed in reports by Shwe Gas Movement, EarthRights International (ERI) and Northern Shan Farmers’ Committee (NSFC).
Apple’s suppliers Jabil, Toyo Rikagaku Kenkyusho and Wintek responded to China Labor Watch’s report "Beyond Foxconn: Deplorable Working Conditions Characterize Apple’s Entire Supply Chain". Two other suppliers Catcher  and Pegatron declined to respond, and Apple itself did not respond. (Our overall response rate from Apple to human rights concerns is 38%, compared with a global average of 70%).
5. About the Resource Centre:

Business & Human Rights Resource Centre is an independent non-profit organization. We provide the leading information hub on business & human rights: www.business-humanrights.org. Our aims are:
Transparency: We track the human rights conduct of over 5,600 companies worldwide – including abuses and advances
Accountability: We invite companies to respond publicly to allegations by civil society (with a global response rate of 70%)
Empowerment: We equip people in NGOs, companies, and governments with the information they need to make the right decisions, and stimulate informed debate
Website:  www.business-humanrights.org
Simplified Chinese website: www.business-humanrights.org/zh-hans Traditional Chinese website: www.business-humanrights.org/zh-hant
Blog: www.business-humanrights.org/en/about-us/blog
Our researchers are based in Brazil, China, Colombia, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Kenya, Lebanon, Senegal, South Africa, Thailand, UK, Ukraine and USA.
This Greater China briefing joins our other regional briefings on over 10 regions/countries.
For further details, see the "About us" section of our website.

DNV GL Launches Interactive Arctic Risk Map To Communicate Region's Complex Risk Picture

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm
DNV GL LAUNCHES INTERACTIVE ARCTIC RISK MAP TO COMMUNICATE REGION’S COMPLEX RISK PICTURE ONS, Stavanger: The world’s need for energy is driving interest in further industrial activity in the Arctic, yet the region’s conditions are highly variable depending on the type of activity, location and time of year. This creates a complex risk picture. DNV GL, the leading technical advisor to the oil & gas industry, has therefore developed an interactive Arctic Risk Map to present the risks associated with offshore and maritime activities in the Arctic. The map aims to provide stakeholders with a comprehensive tool for decision-making and transparent communications. “The Arctic is not a monolithic area and the risk picture varies accordingly. Stakeholders therefore need a sound decision basis for understanding the risks associated with Arctic development and transportation. The DNV GL Arctic Risk Map can help facilitate transparent discussions to address the many dilemmas related to activity in the region,” says Børre Paaske, project manager at DNV GL – Oil & Gas. The map presents multiple dimensions, such as the seasonal distribution of ice, metocean (physical environment) conditions, sea-ice concentrations, biological assets, shipping traffic and oil and gas resources, in a user-friendly, single layout. It also includes a Safety and Operability Index, showing the variation in different factors that impact the risk level depending on the season and their location in the Arctic.   In addition, a location- and season-specific index has been developed showing the environmental vulnerability of marine resources with respect to oil spill as an external stressor. In general, DNV GL’s analysis shows that the Arctic environment is characterised by seasonal variations in vulnerability, and that this vulnerability increases in the summer months along with the level of industrial activity. However, this differs greatly between regions. Some areas, for example, are particularly vulnerable in winter, when they are used by birds for wintering or as spawning grounds for fish.   As a result, the consequences of an accident in the Arctic would likely be more severe in some areas than others. The map is a useful tool to identify regions that require special attention when it comes to planning activities and for imposing mitigation measures throughout the year. The map can also provide input to decisions-makers about restricting certain types of activities in specific areas at different times of the year. “The risk level in the Arctic must be equivalent to – or better than – the best performance in the industry today. The Arctic’s varied and complex conditions require the industry to take a stepwise approach in which learning and technology are developed progressively regarding the more challenging Arctic areas,” says Elisabeth Tørstad, CEO of Oil & Gas, DNV GL. “As an independent body, DNV GL takes an active role in ensuring that any increase in industrial activity has a strong focus on safeguarding life, property and the environment.  This Arctic Risk Map is a great example of our vision in action,” she adds. The link to the Arctic Risk Map is available at www.dnvgl.com/arctic Download images here: http://production.presstogo.com/mars/public_sharing.lb?p_colshar_id=7517&p_hash=5238    About the Arctic Risk Map The Arctic Risk Map has been developed to present the spatial and seasonal distribution of ice and metocean parameters, biological resources, ship traffic, oil and gas resources and accident history. The map is interactive and web-based, developed using the GIS software ArcGIS. The map includes the following locations: Baffin Bay & Davis Strait, including West Greenland, the Barents Sea, including the Pechora Sea, the Beaufort Sea, Bering Sea (East), Bering Sea (West), Canadian Arctic Archipelago, Central Arctic, Chukchi Sea, Greenland Sea (East), Hudson, Kara Sea, Laptev Sea, Siberian Sea and Okhotsk Sea. In addition, the map contains aggregated safety and operability indexes for the Faroe Islands, Iceland and the Norwegian Sea. The map uses the most up-to-date pan-Arctic species-distribution data available. However, it is important to note that there are uncertainties when it comes to both the degree of coverage and quality of the data set that could have an effect on the overall safety and operability picture presented. The information included herein is based upon a non-exhaustive selection of publicly available information which has been compiled by DNV GL. DNV GL has not undertaken an independent verification of the accuracy of the available sources, and the information provided does not constitute a basis for decision-making. By entering this site, you hereby acknowledge that all use of the information given is at the user’s sole risk. You must not rely on the information as an alternative to advice from appropriately qualified professionals. DNV GL accepts no liability whatsoever for the content or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided. No responsibility whatsoever will be assumed by DNV GL for any errors or omissions made. If you have any specific questions about any of these matters, you should consult an appropriately qualified professional. About DNV GL DNV and GL have merged to form DNV GL. We are now the world's largest ship and offshore classification society, the leading technical advisor to the global oil and gas industry and a leading expert for the energy value chain, including renewables and energy efficiency. We have also taken a position as one of the top three certification bodies in the world. Read more here: www.dnvgl.com/merger About DNV GL Oil & Gas In the oil and gas industry, GL Noble Denton and DNV’s Oil & Gas business have joined forces to enable safe, reliable and enhanced performance in projects and operations. We provide integrated services in: technical assurance; marine assurance and advisory; risk management advisory and offshore classification. Our 5,500 people combine industry expertise, multi-disciplinary skills and innovation to solve complex challenges for our customers. Together with our partners, we drive the industry forward by developing best practices and standards across the asset lifecycle.     Media contact: Eli Turander
DNV GL - Oil & Gas
Email : Elinor.Turander@dnvgl.com
Tel: +47 953 35 795     f you would rather not receive future communications from DNV GL, let us know by clicking here.
DNV GL, Hovikveien 1, Høvik, - 1322 Norway

Cause Consulting & Youth Design Inspire Boston Teens to Take Action

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm

Cause Consulting & Youth Design Inspire Boston Teens to Take Action

2014 Youth Design Competition Winners Announced

 BOSTON, MA, August 25, 2014– Stereotyping, police violence, pollution, smoking, GMOs and education were among the issues tackled by Boston's young people during this year’s Youth Designers Take Action Competition, in partnership with Cause Consulting. Youth Design, a year-round program connecting urban youth with the creative profession, is proud to announce that Bethany Barrant, a recent graduate of Boston Latin High School, is the winner of the 2014 competition for her powerful anti-stereotyping PSA highlighting “my appearance is not my story.”

 “If anyone doubts they can do something, I tell them to just go forward and try it,” says 2014 winner Bethany Barrant. “Until two years ago, I never had the chance to take an art class. Today, I can translate images and concepts from thoughts into inspiring ideas. Youth Design gave me the tools, internships, networks, support, exposure and training to help me grow.”

 Throughout the summer, Boston-based social issue and CSR strategy firm Cause Consulting led the students through the PSA creation process. Students were coached by design firm internship mentors, virtual creative directors and Cause Consulting team members. First, each student selected a topic that concerned them, then determined a target audience and finally designed a poster to inspire them to take action. To help students arrive at their final entry, Cause Consulting facilitated a workshop with the students teaching them how to define and research their audience, learn about their chosen issue and create the right messaging and call-to-action. The highlight of the process for many students was working on a mock assignment for John Barros, the Chief of Economic Development in the Mayor’s Office for the City of Boston. To their surprise, John Barros himself joined the Youth Designers at the end of the workshop to hear their perspective on teens and jobs and how they can play a vital role in the creative economy.

 “The students’ designs demonstrate the skill, inherent talent, passion and potential for Boston’s young people to cause change,” says Mark Feldman, Managing Director of Cause Consulting and Youth Design Board Member. “We are proud to invest our time to empower these amazing young peopleto bring their ideas to life.”

 A panel of volunteer judges selected the winners based on their use of powerful imagery, chosen messaging and motivational calls-to-action. The 2014 Youth Designers Take Action winners are:

  • ·        First place –Bethany Barrant for “Stop Stereotyping. My appearance is not my story.”
  • ·         Second place –Yamilet Acevedo for “Pollution, it’s like taking water from a baby.”
  • ·         Third place –Christina Fernandez for “edUcation, U are being left behind.”

 All the PSA’s can be viewed at: http://ow.ly/AH0Gy

Youth Design is a leading Boston-based nonprofit organization that is focused on addressing critical socioeconomic needs of urban youth by teaching them highly marketable design skills, providing access to unparalleled professional mentors, and supporting them along the path toward higher education.  Since 2003, Youth Design has helped to shape the next generation of diverse design professionals through aggressive educational and workforce development initiatives set in the context of design while promoting diversity in the creative economy.

 Cause Consulting is a Boston-based strategy and communications firm that helps companies simultaneously strengthen business and impact society.  Ranked as the #2 CSR Communications Agency by CR Magazine, , the firm specializes in CSR strategy, signature programs, cause marketing, employee engagement and communications. 

Blue Cross Blue Shield Association Releases ‘Investing in America’s Health’

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm
    Blue Cross Blue Shield Association Releases ‘Investing in America’s Health’ Annual report demonstrates Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies’ impact in creating healthier communities nationwide   CHICAGO – Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS) companies around the country collectively devoted more than $363 million to support community health initiatives in 2013, and their employees volunteered more than 370,361 hours to community service, according to “Investing in America’s Health,” a report by the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA). The sixth annual report demonstrates the 37 BCBS companies’ commitment to creating healthier communities nationwide.   “Across every ZIP code in the U.S., nearly one in three Americans rely on Blue Cross and Blue Shield for access to safe, quality and affordable healthcare,” said Scott Serota, president and CEO of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. “With local roots in every community, Blue companies are uniquely positioned to create and maintain lasting partnerships with doctors, hospitals, schools and other organizations to help create stronger, healthier communities.” By working alongside local physicians and hospitals, BCBS companies help deliver better quality and more affordable care. They provide leadership and help fund local programs that improve the health and wellness of more than 105 million members and their communities. This collective support demonstrates The Power of Blue and its three focus areas: improving access to healthcare, improving healthcare quality and affordability, and enabling healthier living.  Improving Access to Healthcare BCBS companies are working to address a predicted shortage of tens of thousands of medical professionals by 2025. In an effort to ensure Americans have access to physicians, nurses, hospitals and other healthcare facilities, BCBS companies are investing in education and development programs for America’s healthcare workforce. BCBS companies also support local clinics that provide services in underserved areas. Improving Healthcare Quality and Affordability The Blues® are developing innovative tools and programs to improve the quality of care and help make it affordable for all Americans. Today, BCBS companies are leading a shift toward care delivery programs that provide incentives for better health outcomes for patients while reducing costly duplication and waste in care delivery. About one in five claim dollars are now spent in these new models, with more than 24 million BCBS members in 350 locally tailored programs that reward doctors for better coordinated care and improved health outcomes. BCBS companies also recognize medical facilities that demonstrate proven expertise in delivering safe, effective and cost-efficient care through the Blue Distinction® program. Additionally, BCBSA’s Center for Clinical Effectiveness assesses the effectiveness of medical devices, procedures and biological products through comprehensive reviews and clinical evidence. Enabling Healthier Living With a commitment to improving the health and wellness of the communities they serve, BCBS companies provide a variety of resources to organizations, schools, families and individuals to help create a healthier living environment. A key focus is reversing the trend of childhood obesity. In collaboration with the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), BCBS companies in 10 cities hosted more than 72,000 people at 48 events in 2013. These events gave communities a place to play by closing roads to traffic and opening them up for families to jump, run and stay active. BCBS companies also work alongside local chapters of national charitable organizations that share their vision of a healthier America. BCBS employees donated $8.9 million to community and social causes and volunteered 370,361 hours by building playgrounds, working in community gardens, bringing meals to the homeless, organizing community walks to support non-profits, mentoring students, donating blood and serving on boards. “For 85 years, the locally operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies have been committed to improving health and wellness in the communities they serve,” Serota said. “They devote valuable resources to help create healthier communities — not just for members, but for every American.” To learn more about how BCBS companies are improving the health and wellness of members and their communities through The Power of Blue, view the report at www.bcbs.com/investingincommunities.   Blue Cross Blue Shield Association is a national federation of 37 independent, community-based and locally operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that collectively provide healthcare coverage for more than 105 million members – one in three Americans. For more information on the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association and its member companies, please visit www.BCBS.com.  We encourage you to connect with us on Facebook, check out our videos on YouTube, follow us on Twitter and check out The BCBS Blog for up-to-date information about BCBSA.

Seventh Generation Advances Key Sustainability Goals

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm

Seventh Generation Advances Key Sustainability Goals

2013 Corporate Consciousness Report Details Industry-Leading Evolution

BURLINGTON, VT--(Marketwired - Aug 5, 2014) -  Seventh Generation, the nation's number one brand of renewable, bio-based consumer products, has unveiled its 2013 Corporate Consciousness Report. The company's latest sustainability performance review examines the progress it's made on its objectives to Nurture Nature, Enhance Health, Transform Commerce, and Build Community as it works toward the ambitious end-of-decade goals set forth in its 2020 Roadmap.

The new report adheres to the Global Reporting Initiative G4 guidelines, a leading, globally relevant framework which require a new higher standard of transparency. Seventh Generation is an early champion of the revised guidelines that aren't scheduled to be introduced until 2016. Among the reports highlights are a series of supply chain changes that significantly boost the renewability of the company's many products. Chief among this is Forest Stewardship Council sustainability certification for 62% of its wood pulp consumption, a groundbreaking industry-first that dramatically exceeds the year's goal of 50% certification. Additionally in 2013, all products eligible for the USDA's Certified Bio-Based Product labeling received the program's seal, and the introduction of new bottle caps made from 50% post-consumer recycled plastic led the way to a 25% company-wide reduction in the use of virgin plastic. The company also reports reducing its greenhouse gas emissions per metric ton of product by 11%.

Socially, 2013 was a banner year at Seventh Generation as well. The company's community volunteering program, which encourages employees to devote work time to local causes, had a 100% participation rate and total hours donated were 40% above the year's target. The firm also moved from #11 to #3 on Vermont's "Best Places to Work" survey; made financial and product donations of $225,000 to non-profit organizations working to make the world a better place; and led efforts to reform chemical safety laws on both a national and state level.

Seventh Generation's industry influence continues to grow as well. In an effort to reform the wasteful bottled water market, the company purchased bobble, a leading reusable bottle maker for which the company will supply wide distribution. It also developed a supplier code of conduct, launched sustainability collaborations with its retail partners and Tier 2 suppliers, and became a founding signatory of the Climate Declaration urging federal climate change action.

"What I like best about our new report is that it shows us refusing to rest on our laurels," said Corporate Consciousness manager Ashley Orgain. "We're still making meaningful progress despite the fact that each year progress gets harder to make. We've picked all the low-hanging environmental fruit -- now we're reaching for the high stuff. That makes any achievement pretty remarkable yet alone the strides we saw in 2013. And that's really our message; every person and each business can live sustainably. You just have to take that first step and then keep on walking."

To read the 2013 Seventh Generation Corporate Consciousness Report, visit www.seventhgeneration.com/2013-report

ABOUT SEVENTH GENERATION
Seventh Generation is committed to being the most trusted brand of household and personal-care products for your living home. Our products are healthy solutions for the air, surfaces, fabrics, pets and people within your home -- and for the community and environment outside of it. Seventh Generation also offers baby products that are safe for your children and the planet. The company derives its name from the Great Law of the Iroquois Confederacy that states, "In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations." Every time you use a Seventh Generation product you are making a difference by saving natural resources, reducing pollution, and making the world a better place for this and the next seven generations.

For information on Seventh Generation cleaning, paper, baby and feminine personal care products, to find store locations, and explore the company's website visit www.seventhgeneration.com.

Contact:
Brandi Thomas
Seventh Generation
(802) 658-3773 x760
bst@seventhgeneration.com
www.seventhgeneration.com

Le Bonheur Children's Hospital Announces $200,000 Gift From ServiceMaster

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm

  

Le Bonheur Children's Hospital Announces $200,000 Gift From ServiceMaster

 

The Donation Will Be Presented During a Ceremony at Le Bonheur Today

 MEMPHIS, TN--(Marketwired - August 22, 2014) - Le Bonheur Children's Hospital is pleased to announce a $200,000 gift from ServiceMaster Global Holdings, Inc., a leading provider of essential residential and commercial services. The generous contribution will be paid over a four-year term and will be donated on behalf of ServiceMaster employees to one of the leading children's hospitals in the United States.

 "We deeply appreciate ServiceMaster's generosity," said Meri Armour, MSN/MBA, president and chief executive officer, Le Bonheur Children's Hospital. "We value our partnership with ServiceMaster and are honored that they continue to support Le Bonheur and our mission to give children a chance to grow up healthy, strong and safe."

The donation will be presented during a ribbon-cutting ceremony today. The gift coincides with ServiceMaster's annual We Serve Day, where more than a thousand ServiceMaster employees will participate in volunteer efforts across the country -- including several projects which will benefit Le Bonheur Children's Hospital.

 "Le Bonheur Children's is a cherished friend and partner of ServiceMaster in the Greater Memphis community," said Rob Gillette, ServiceMaster's chief executive officer. "Hundreds of our associates' children have received treatment and care from the hospital, and this gift is meant to demonstrate our continued commitment to the patients, staff and mission of Le Bonheur."

In recognition of this gift, the 12th floor family room for transplant, diabetes and gastroenterology patients and families will be named for the Memphis-based company. It will be stocked with books, toys and games that visitors and family members can enjoy during their stays at the hospital and take with them when they return home.

Le Bonheur is verified by the American College of Surgeons as a Level 1 pediatric trauma center and is the only Level 1 pediatric trauma center in the region.

 About Le Bonheur Children's Hospital
Le Bonheur Children's Hospital in Memphis, Tenn., treats more than 250,000 children each year in a 255-bed hospital that features state-of-the-art technology and family-friendly resources. Nationally recognized, Le Bonheur has been named by U.S. News & World Report as a Best Children's Hospital. Serving as a primary teaching affiliate for the University Tennessee Health Science Center, the hospital trains more pediatricians than any other hospital in the state. For more information, please call (901) 287-6030 or visit www.lebonheur.org. Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/lebonheurchild or like us on Facebook atfacebook.com/lebonheurchildrens

 About ServiceMaster
ServiceMaster Global Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SERV) is a leading provider of essential residential and commercial services, operating through an extensive service network of more than 7,000 company-owned, franchised and licensed locations. The company's portfolio of well-recognized brands includes Terminix (termite and pest control), American Home Shield (home warranties), ServiceMaster Restore (disaster restoration), ServiceMaster Clean (janitorial), Merry Maids (residential cleaning), Furniture Medic (furniture repair) and AmeriSpec (home inspections). The company serves approximately 5 million residential and commercial customers through an employee base of approximately 13,000 company associates and a franchise network that independently employs an estimated 33,000 additional people. The company is headquartered in Memphis, Tenn. Go towww.servicemaster.com for more information about ServiceMaster or follow the company at twitter.com/ServiceMaster or facebook.com/TheServiceMasterCo.

 

GMP Announces First of Its Kind Solar Project to Increase Resiliency & Improve Safety During Storms

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm

GMP Announces First-of-Its-Kind Solar Project to Increase

Resiliency & Improve Safety During Storms

Stafford Hill Solar Farm in Rutland Uses Micro-Grid Technology & Battery Storage to Power Rutland High School as an Emergency Shelter

 RUTLAND, VT--(Marketwired - Aug 12, 2014) - Green Mountain Power began construction today on an innovative new solar project to improve resiliency and safety in communities, by generating clean energy that can be stored and used to power an emergency shelter at Rutland High School during a storm. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, The Stafford Hill Solar Farm is the first project to establish a micro-grid powered solely by solar and battery back-up, with no other fuel source.

Stafford Hill includes 7,700 solar panels that can generate 2 MW of electricity, enough to power about 2,000 homes during full sun, or 365 homes year-round. It also includes 4 MW of battery storage to store solar generation, which will provide many benefits to customers, including allowing the disconnection of an entire circuit from the grid in an emergency and providing critical power for an emergency shelter at the high school.

"Stafford Hill is a major milestone in creating more resilient and strong communities throughout Vermont," said Green Mountain Power President and CEO Mary Powell. "As part of our commitment to provide reliable, clean and cost-effective power to customers, GMP recognizes how important it is to power critical infrastructure such as schools and shelters in an emergency. Stafford Hill is an important part of that effort, as we will use what we learn here in Rutland to improve how we serve all customers. With the frequency of major storms growing, this project is critical and demonstrates how GMP is continuing to lead the way with innovative energy solutions to meet everyday challenges."

Governor Peter Shumlin attended the groundbreaking on the new solar project as part of his Summer Solar tour, and praised GMP for leading with new energy initiatives like Stafford Hill. In the wake of Tropical Storm Irene, many communities were left with massive damage and families were displaced for extended periods of time. Governor Shumlin pointed to the clear need to provide new energy solutions to keep the lights on and create self-sustaining micro-grids that can continue to provide power during storms and when there are widespread outages.

"With this project, Vermont remains on the cutting edge of the renewable energy front," Governor Peter Shumlin said. "The clean energy industry creates jobs and is good for the environment. Storing renewable power has always been a challenge, and I'm proud that we're here today to take that next step forward. It's projects like these that continue to make Vermont the leader in green jobs."

Another exciting feature of the project is its unique location. The Stafford Hill Solar Farm is sited at the closed Rutland City landfill, and is the first known solar storage project in the country to repurpose brownfield land once used to bury waste for the siting of renewable energy. 

Stafford Hill is another important step in the partnership to establish Rutland as the Energy City of the Future, where GMP pilots new technology to improve people's lives before spreading initiatives statewide. And the project represents progress towards the goal of making Rutland City the Solar Capital of New England.

"This project represents the kind of public-private partnership that has been so important to Rutland's ongoing revitalization," Mayor Chris Louras said. "GMP's Energy Innovation Center has already breathed new life into our downtown and inspired many of our newest businesses to open. Similarly, this project is creating energy and income for the city on property that has no real development opportunity. Equally important, projects like this are putting Rutland on the map in the renewable energy world. That will have positive long-term impacts on the city and greater-Rutland community."

 Dynapower of South Burlington designed special equipment for the project and the Clean Energy States Alliance helped secure funding from the U.S. Department of Energy. Other partners include Governor Shumlin, Mayor Louras and city leaders, GMP's Energy Innovation Center, Stafford Technical Center, groSolar, the Vermont Clean Energy Development Fund, VEIC and the Vermont Department of Public Service.

 "It is so cool to see GMP and these partners help turn our high school into an area to help people by harnessing the power of the sun," said Caitlin Laird, who is going to be a sophomore at Rutland High School this year. "I've seen the impact of these bad storms, and it's great to see GMP providing leadership and creative ideas to help the community I love."

 GMP received a Certificate of Public Good for the project on June 15 and preliminary site work is under way. The $10 million project is expected to be complete in mid-December.

 "Vermont is at the forefront of an energy revolution. Our work to deliver clean energy is comprehensive and coordinated, as you can see from the many stakeholders and leaders involved," Powell concluded. "The future for Vermont is a bright one, in part because we are working together to build a clean energy future with innovative products and services, a more resilient grid, and lower costs."

 To learn more about Stafford Hill go to: www.greenmountainpower.com/innovative/solar_capital/stafford-hill-solar-farm

 About Green Mountain Power
Green Mountain Power (www.greenmountainpower.com) generates, transmits, distributes and sells electricity in the state of Vermont. The company, which was named 2014 Solar Champion by Vote Solar, serves more than 250,000 customers and has set its vision to be the best small company in America.

 Contact Information

Contact:
Kristin Carlson
Green Mountain Power
(802) 229-8200

Leaders from AbbVie, CH2M Hill, ERM, Lend Lease, Occidental Petroleum and Roll Global Among Speaker Lineup for SPF Americas 2014

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm
Leaders From AbbVie, CH2M HILL, ERM, Lend Lease, Occidental Petroleum and Roll Global Among Speaker Lineup for SPF Americas 2014   Largest EH&S, Sustainability and Risk Technology Conference to Gather Over 500 Professionals in Chicago   CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwired - Aug 21, 2014) - The Enablon Sustainable Performance Forum (SPF) Americas 2014, taking place on Thursday, Sept., 25th and Friday, Sept. 26th, will feature a stellar lineup of speakers composed of inspiring industry experts and business leaders. The conference will be held at the Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel in Chicago, IL, by Enablon, the world's leading provider of EH&S, Sustainability and Risk Management software. With more than 50 sessions and 500 professionals from some of the largest companies registered as of today, the SPF is the largest EH&S, Sustainability and Risk Technology conference in North America. The complimentary conference brings together business leaders and industry experts to discuss how to leverage people, processes and technology to drive sustainability, minimize risk and maximize business performance. SPF Americas speakers are experts from many of the world's largest corporations and leading organizations. These innovators come to SPF to share their expertise with forward-thinking professionals on topics including performance management, audit & compliance, risk & incident, environment, health & safety, and more. Presentations touch upon the hottest topics in the space, including mobility and predictive analytics. Attendees will walk away with a wealth of knowledge from the agenda. Agenda Highlights
  • Opening Keynote: highly decorated American astronaut, fighter pilot and test pilot John O. Creighton will keynote on safety and risk management. Subject-matter experts from companies including BNSF Railway, CH2M HILL and ERM will then discuss strategies for managing risk, performance and compliance in an interactive panel format.
  • Industry Roundtables: new to the 2014 agenda, these roundtables provide the ideal platform to share industry challenges and best practices with like-minded professionals. Industry categories include Oil & Gas, Mining & Metals, Chemicals, Food & Beverage, Manufacturing and many more.
  • Case Studies: EH&S, Sustainability and Risk experts from Enablon customers including Abbvie, Aleris International, Axiall Corporation, DCP Midstream, Lend Lease, Occidental Petroleum, and Roll Global discuss how they are leveraging technology to manage environmental and social performance, ensure compliance, minimize risks and improve profitability.
  • Implementation Track: both Enablon customers and non-customers will find value in this track covering best practices for software selection, implementation and migration.
  • Mobility Session: dedicated to one of today's hottest topics, this session will discuss the role of mobility in advancing a company's EH&S, Sustainability and Risk initiatives, and the ins and outs of Enablon mobile solutions. Mobility will also be addressed by speakers throughout the conference.
The conference also offers multiple networking events including the distinguished Gala Dinner and Enablon Excellence Awards Ceremony which recognizes organizations that are leading the way within their industry and that effectively leverage technology to achieve superior results in sustainable performance. Previous awards recipients include Ball Corporation, Enbridge, Lend Lease, PepsiCo, Sherwin Williams, Timberland and UPS. For more information on the agenda, speakers and networking opportunities, visit the conference website at www.enablon.com/spf-americas-2014 or follow us on Twitter: @enablon and #SPFAmericas Visit the registration page at http://bit.ly/1BFEaEX to reserve your complimentary pass. To request a press invitation, please contact Coline Vaillant at cvaillant@enablon.net. About Enablon
Enablon is the world's leading provider of Sustainability Management solutions. More than 1,000 global companies and 1 million users worldwide use Enablon software solutions to manage environmental and social performance, minimize risks and improve profitability. Enablon provides on-premises and SaaS solutions and an advanced online sustainability network called Wizness. Through its partnership network, Enablon operates in more than 160 countries. For more information about Enablon and its products: www.enablon.com   Contact Information
  • Press Contact
    Coline Vaillant
    Enablon
    Email Contact
    Tel: +1 312 784 7955  

Tetra Pak® Recycler, Verdek, Earns Certification From SCS Global Services for Recycled Poly-Aluminum Building Panels and FSC® Kraft Pulp

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm

Tetra Pak® Recycler, Verdek, Earns Certification From SCS Global Services for Recycled Poly-Aluminum Building Panels and FSC® Kraft Pulp

EMERYVILLE, CA--(Marketwired - Aug 13, 2014) - Verdek Transformaciones Sustentables (Verdek), a recycling company of Tetra Pak® cartons in Mexico, has earned both Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification for its recovered pulp fiber and post-consumer Recycled Content certification for its poly-aluminum building panels, both derived from its Tetra Pak recycling facility near Mexico City. The certifications were awarded by SCS Global Services, a leading provider of environmental and sustainability certification worldwide. 

"Our auditors have reviewed Verdek's production process, inputs, and tracking procedures in order to verify the accuracy of its Recycled Content and FSC claims," said Alicia Godlove, Materials Manager for SCS. "No less than 98% of the raw material for these products is derived from post-consumer Tetra Pak cartons, diverting these containers from the waste stream while producing usable building and paper products."

Tetra Pak cartons are made from high strength paper fiber layered with aluminum foil and polyethylene plastic. The cardboard paper gives the carton its strength and printing surface while the aluminum and polyethylene protect its contents from light, moisture, oxygen, and microorganisms. The resulting multi-layer ascetic container keeps food and beverage products safe to consume without refrigeration or the use of additional preservatives for up to a year. 

Verdek pays Tetra Pak carton recyclers for the used cartons collected from schools, hospitals, and neighborhoods throughout Mexico. Through a "hydro-pulping" process, water and friction are used to separate the cellulose fibers from the polyethylene and aluminum. The fiber is rolled and pressed into blocks to be used for tissues and paper towels. The remaining poly-aluminum is dried, processed, and compressed with a thin layer of polyethylene film and/or kraft paper into building panels that can be used as flooring, roof and ceiling tiles, base layers for kitchen and bathroom countertops, and as a substitute for fiberboard and plywood panels. 

Verdek's certified products will help support downstream markets for environmentally friendly materials. The recycled content poly-aluminum panels will help architects and builders earn credits under the widely adopted LEED v4 rating system of the US Green Building Council and the FSC pulp will allow mills to produce FSC certified tissue and paper products.

Over 172 billion individual Tetra Pak cartons are produced annually in more than 170 countries around the world. They are used by leading food and beverage companies, as well as development and public health organizations, to deliver more than 76 billion liters of milk, juice, nectars and other products to consumers. Although fully recyclable, due to limited infrastructure, it is estimated that only 25% of Tetra Pak cartons are recycled into usable products. Verdek's manufacturing facility has the capacity to process up to 1000 tons of post-consumer recycled Tetra Pak cartons per month, diverting the equivalent of 388 million 1 liter cartons from the waste stream per year or .23% of total global production.

About SCS Global Services

SCS Global Services has been providing global leadership in third-party environmental and sustainability certification, auditing, testing, and standards development for three decades. Programs span a cross-section of industries, recognizing achievements in green building, product manufacturing, food and agriculture, forestry, and more. Now in its 30th year, SCS is a Certified B Corporation™, reflecting its commitment to socially and environmentally responsible business practice. 

Contact Information

CONTACT:
Lawrence Nussbaum
+1.510.452.6821
lnussbaum@scsgloblaservices.com

Seventh Generation Acquires the Business of Gamila Products, LLC Including Impress Coffee Brewer and Teastick

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm

Seventh Generation Acquires the Business of Gamila Products, LLC Including Impress Coffee Brewer and Teastick

Green Leader Expands On-the-Go Reusable Beverage Container Line and Capabilities

BURLINGTON, VT--(Marketwired - Jul 15, 2014) - Today, Seventh Generation, the nation's leading brand of non-toxic and renewable bio-based household, baby and personal care solutions, announces its acquisition of the Gamila Products, LLC business. Gamila's Impress Coffee Brewer and Teastick products will be folded into Seventh Generation Ventures as part of the bobble® brand portfolio. bobble is on a mission to reduce the outrageous waste of single serve water bottles through its reusable bottle that blends style and function, filtering water while you drink.

Both Gamila and bobble are innovators in the realm of portable beverage products with a focus on more sustainable consumer solutions, making this a seamless merging of the two brands. Seventh Generation Ventures acquired bobble in 2013 to expand its offerings and meet the growing needs of consumers who desire to live a healthy, environmentally-friendly lifestyle. Now, one year later, the company is furthering this mission with its purchase of Gamila. In fact, Seventh Generation Ventures was created to enable other mission-led brands to leverage Seventh Generation's infrastructure to accelerate growth.

"The success of bobble has validated that today's consumers want more sustainable, stylish beverage carrier options," said John Replogle, CEO and President, Seventh Generation. "When we learned of Gamila and discovered the company was similarly focused on design and reducing single-serve waste, we knew we had found something special. We're excited to continue exploring the portable beverage industry with their team."

Under the Gamila brand there are currently two products:

Impress Coffee Brewer: The Impress is a clever, one-cup-at-a-time coffee maker that combines manual immersion brewing with a nested press design and micro-filter extraction. The Impress brews a full-flavored great cup of coffee in 3 minutes or less without the need for paper filters, electric mechanisms or fussy coils and plungers.

The Impress Coffee Brewer was originally introduced on Kickstarter. The Gamila team reached its fundraising goal within the first week of their campaign and ultimately raised three times the goal by the end of the month-long campaign period.

Teastick: The Teastick is a sleek, one-cup infuser that combines the quality of loose-leaf tea with the convenience (but not the waste) of a tea bag. Designed as a single-serve infuser as well as a tea scoop and stirrer, this item can currently be found in kitchen and home stores across the country.

As part of the agreement with Gamila Products, Seventh Generation will also work with the company's award-winning product development group, Designbox. This relationship will enable further exploration and commercialization of portable filtration technology and reusable beverage carriers as well as the potential development of low-cost water filtration systems for third world countries.

"We share Seventh Generation's mission of creating sustainable products through socially responsible business practices and are thrilled to join forces with them," said Aly Khalifa, Co-Founder of Designbox. "We have been familiar with the company and the bobble brand for quite a while, and it is a natural fit for us to develop new and exciting portable beverage solutions together."

Partnering with Designbox also advances bobble's goal to "make water better." Replogle shared, "bobble has made great strides in on-the-go and at-home water filtration technology. The acquisition of Gamila and collaboration with Designbox provide an opportunity to innovate further in this space and deliver more options to consumers seeking a healthy, sustainable lifestyle."

To learn more about Seventh Generation, please visit www.seventhgeneration.com. For more information on bobble, please visit www.waterbobble.com.

About Seventh Generation
 Established in 1988, in Burlington, Vermont, Seventh Generation is one of the nation's leading brands of household and personal care products. The company lives its commitment to "caring today for seven generations of tomorrows," with products formulated to provide mindful solutions for the air, surfaces, fabrics, pets and people within your home -- and for the community and environment outside of it. A pioneer in corporate responsibility, Seventh Generation continually evaluates ways to reduce its environmental impact, increase performance and safety, and create a more sustainable supply chain. To learn more about Seventh Generation products and business practices, locate a retailer in your area, or review Seventh Generation's Corporate Consciousness Report, visit www.seventhgeneration.com.

About Gamila Products
Gamila was created by Aly and Beth Khalifa as another project of their innovation firm, Designbox, to bring together gourmet taste with great design. The Teastick was launched in 2005 and inspired a new category for stylish single-serve tea service. Building on those insights of individualized gourmet service, Gamila introduced the Impress to an enthusiastic launch on Kickstarter, which quickly gained international attention and distribution. Gamila's sustainably-minded, future-classic products combine the craft of a personal, well-made beverage with the simple functionality of a well-designed product. To learn more about Gamila Products, visit www.gamilacompany.com. To learn more about Aly and Beth's work in design innovation, visit www.designbox.us.

Contact Information

CONTACT:
Brandi Thomas
Seventh Generation
bst@seventhgeneration.com
(802) 658-3773 ext. 760

SCS Global Services Releases Updated Recycled Content Certification Standard

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm

SCS Global Services Releases Updated Recycled Content Certification Standard

EMERYVILLE, CA--(Marketwired - Jul 28, 2014) - SCS Global Services (SCS), a leader in third-party environmental and sustainability certification, announced today the release of its updated (Version 7.0) Recycled Content Certification Standard.

The SCS Recycled Content Certification Program has helped manufacturers demonstrate their commitment to conserving natural resources, support corporate sustainability goals, and meet customer specifications for recycled products since 1990. The SCS Kingfisher Recycled Content label has been applied to products in a wide range of industries, such as textiles, carpet, packaging, building and interior products, wood and paper, insulation, jewelry, precious metals and more.

"Recycled Content Certification is a flagship program at SCS that verifies the pre-consumer and post-consumer recycled content claims of manufacturers around the world," said Alicia Godlove, Manager of Materials Services at SCS. "Our updated standard includes important changes developed with input from our clients and stakeholders, and will solidify SCS' position as the certifier of choice for recycled content claims."

The SCS Recycled Content Certification process ensures that recycled material is derived from verifiable sources, that thorough material tracking procedures are in place, and that production data produces accurate claims about the recycled content of final products.

The Version 7.0 additions to the SCS Recycled Content Standard include:

  • A new "made with" certification option for a material or product that contains recycled ingredients. For example, "made with 100% post-consumer recycled PET resin." This claim provides an opportunity for Recycled Content claims to be more easily passed along the supply chain. SCS will continue to offer the traditional minimum content claim based on the entire product.
  • New criteria for vendor selection and formula control have been added to improve and streamline the material qualification process, along with other steps to streamline the review.
  • A new Reclaimed Silvicultural Fiber claim, which had been under the umbrella of the Recycled Content Standard, will be replaced by a new certification program, to be developed by the SCS Natural Resources team. This program will include criteria for recovered wood, as well as minimum legal requirements for reclaimed wood and wood fibers.
  • For recycled precious metals and 3T metals (tin, tungsten, tantalum), the manufacturer shall demonstrate the implementation of a "Know Your Customer" procedure.

The V 7.0 Recycled Content Standard can be found at http://scsglobalservices.com/files/standards/scs_stn_recycledcontent_v7-0_070814.pdf

About SCS Global Services

SCS Global Services has been providing global leadership in third-party environmental and sustainability certification, auditing, testing, and standards development for three decades. Programs span a cross section of industries, recognizing achievements in green building, product manufacturing, food and agriculture, forestry, and more. Now in its 30th year, SCS is a Certified B Corporation™, reflecting its commitment to socially and environmentally responsible business practice.

Contact Information

Media Contact:

Lawrence Nussbaum
lnussbaum@scsglobalservices.com
510.452.6821

Northern Chef first to offer ASC certified tilapia in the United States

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm

  

  

 Northern Chef first to offer ASC certified tilapia in the United States

Utrecht, 20 August 2014 – Seafood consumer in the United States (US) can now enjoy responsibly farmed tilapia that has been certified to the ASC standard for responsible aquaculture.

Tai Foong USA is the first company in the US to source and sell ASC certified tilapia under its Northern Chef brand. Its Northern Chef Tilapia Fillets 10 oz product have been on sale since mid-May this year across the country in Sprouts Farmers Market, Ingles Markets, Tops Friendly Markets, Lucky's Markets, Nugget Markets, Fresh Thyme Farmers Markets, and through the Harvest Meat Company. Tai Foong USA expects to distribute to an additional 5,000 stores this year alone.

 Davy Lam, President Tai Foong USA, said that the ASC certified tilapia has become the number one seller in the Northern Chef fin fish line of products due its high quality, clean taste and responsibly farmed attributes. “We are thrilled to be able to offer our customers responsibly farmed tilapia,” Lam said. “The ASC logo on the pack ensures that the fish has been certified against the most robust standard in the market. Tai Foong is committed to promoting environmental and social responsibility. The ASC program supports our responsible sourcing policy and provides our customers with a greater choice. Therefore, we also plan to offer ASC certified shrimp in the US market once it is available.”

 “I am delighted that the first product with the on-pack ASC logo is now available in the United States,” said Chris Ninnes, ASC’s CEO. “Thanks to Tai Foong’s commitment and vision to provide US consumers with responsibly farmed Tilapia, consumers are in turn rewarding the commitment of the farms through their seafood purchases.”

 “It is encouraging to see new countries enter the ASC program. The US is a leading global market so this marks a major milestone for the ASC. I look forward to more US companies sourcing ASC certified products and the ASC program expanding further in this important market in the years to come.”

 Helping consumers make responsible choices

 The on-pack ASC logo helps consumers make an informed choice when shopping for seafood. Products carrying the logo reassure customers that the fish is sourced from a farm that minimizes its environmental and social impact.

When shoppers buy ASC labelled products the certified farms receive the market recognition they deserve. Farms must meet the strict requirements set out in the ASC standards showing that they are well managed, use responsible farming methods and are socially responsible.

As a result, ASC certified farms deliver a cleaner seabed, cleaner water and healthier fish. They can also demonstrate that they are preserving the diversity of the species and wild population, adhering to strict feed requirements and ensuring social responsibility.

Companies in the supply chain that wish to sell their products as ASC certified must pass a rigorous Chain of Custody third party audit by an independent accredited certifier. The companies must demonstrate that they have solid traceability systems in place to guarantee that no product mixing or substitution can occur.

Certified companies are subject to annual surveillance audits, unannounced audits and product trace backs.

  

 Tai Foong USA

Tai Foong USA, Inc. offers all natural seafood and Asian cuisine products to retail and foodservice operators. Tai Foong USA, Inc is a leading importer and distributor of seafood and other food items. Founded in 1958, Tai Foong USA, Inc is a private family-owned business based in Seattle, Washington. You will find their brands (Royal Asia and Northern Chef) on grocery store shelves across North America. Tai Foong USA, Inc is committed to supplying their customers with the finest, highest quality food products in the world.

 About the ASC

The Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) is an independent, not-for-profit organization co- founded by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and The Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) in 2010 to manage the certification of responsible fish farming across the globe.

 The ASC standards require farm performance to be measured against both environmental and social requirements.

Certification is through an independent third party process and (draft) reports are uploaded to the public ASC website.

The on-pack ASC logo guarantees to consumers that the fish they purchase has been farmed with minimal impacts on the environment and on society.

For more information about ASC please visit www.asc-aqua.org.

 

 

ServiceMaster Employees Preparing for Ambitious Volunteer Effort

CSRwire - Thu, 08/28/2014 - 1:15pm
ServiceMaster Employees Preparing for Ambitious Volunteer Effort    "We Serve Day" Celebrates Legacy of Service in Communities All Over the U.S.   MEMPHIS, TN--(Marketwired - August 20, 2014) - ServiceMaster Global Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SERV), a leading provider of essential residential and commercial services, announced that more than a thousand of its employees will undertake simultaneous volunteer efforts across the country in celebration of the company's second annual We Serve Day on Friday, August 22. Employees from all ServiceMaster business units will engage in community projects in cities and town across the United States, including Memphis, Tenn.; Dallas, Texas; Phoenix, Ariz.; Tampa, Fla.; Carroll, Iowa; Cross Plains, Wis.; LaGrange, Ga.; and Norcross, Ga. "At ServiceMaster, service is more than just a responsibility and a commitment to our customers -- it's the heart of our business," said Rob Gillette, ServiceMaster's chief executive officer. "Service is part of our name and community service is one of our most cherished traditions. We Serve Day is an important symbol of living our legacy." Examples of volunteer service as part of this year's We Serve Day include:
  • Joining Habitat for Humanity of Greater Memphis in a beautification and revitalization effort that will include painting, neighborhood clean up and landscaping
  • Putting finishing touches on the new ServiceMaster Family Room at the Le Bonheur Children's Hospital in Memphis and stocking the room with games, toys and arts and crafts for patients and their families
  • Operating the hospitality cart and coffee carts at LeBonheur, passing out breakfast and coffee to families, and shampoo, deodorant, toothbrushes and other necessities that out-of-town patients and their families may have left behind
  • Painting school rooms, providing new tables, chairs and play equipment for the Carroll Area Child Care Center in Carroll, Iowa
  • Helping stock the Ronald McDonald House in Madison, Wis., with cleaning products, puzzles, games, movies and toys
  • Assembling 400 care packages for the homeless at the Phoenix Rescue Mission in Phoenix, Ariz.
  • Assisting the National Civil Rights Museum staff in moving offices and relocating retail space into the newly renovated Lorraine Motel, the historical civil rights landmark in Memphis
  • Baking treats and assembling welcome bags and craft kits for families staying in the Tri-Delta Place while visiting St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis
Other efforts include projects to support the Mid-South Food Bank, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Junior Achievement, Tri-Delta Place, Youth Villages and the Kate Bond Middle School, all based in Memphis; the Florence Hand Home, Twin Fountain, Harmony House, Emmaus House LaGrange, West Georgia Health System -- Hospice and LaGrange Personal Aide, all based in Georgia; and Metropolitan Ministries in Tampa. About ServiceMaster
ServiceMaster Global Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SERV) is a leading provider of essential residential and commercial services, operating through an extensive service network of more than 7,000 company-owned, franchised and licensed locations. The company's portfolio of well-recognized brands includes Terminix (termite and pest control), American Home Shield (home warranties), ServiceMaster Restore (disaster restoration), ServiceMaster Clean (janitorial), Merry Maids (residential cleaning), Furniture Medic (furniture repair) and AmeriSpec (home inspections). The company serves approximately 5 million residential and commercial customers through an employee base of approximately 13,000 company associates and a franchise network that independently employs an estimated 33,000 additional people. The company is headquartered in Memphis, Tenn. Go to www.servicemaster.com for more information about ServiceMaster or follow the company at twitter.com/ServiceMaster or facebook.com/TheServiceMasterCo. Image Available: http://www.marketwire.com/library/MwGo/2014/8/19/11G020218/Images/We_Serve_LOGO-866544717407.JPG   Contact Information
  • For further information contact:

    Media:
    James Robinson
    (901) 413-6269
    Email contact
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