The disaster at the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear power plant has highlighted the importance of nuclear energy to Japan and the power long wielded by the nuclear sector. But that influence now is sure to wane, to the relief of opponents who have fought for years to check nuclear’s rapid growth.
Can we really ever move beyond petroleum? Traditional fossil fuels like coal and petroleum are so ingrained in our culture and way of life that eradicating them as fuel sources soon is unlikely. We need to think about what we produce and the costs that go beyond the balance sheet: the costs to the environment, to the people that live where our raw materials originate, the cost of the life of a pelican, gull or fish. It is our personal responsibility to consume less and conserve more.
Andrew Winston, founder of Winston Eco-Strategies, kicked of day two of the Sustainable Brands 2010 conference with an informative talk on how the difficult environmental, economic and supply challenges that business and industry face, have changed that game and how those challenges are presenting opportunities.
Many green buildings also seek to promote a green aesthetic and ambiance in their design and in how they are sited within the urban fabric they will exist within. Often these other additional design considerations flow from and are achieved in a synergistic manner by the structure’s other central design goals of reducing energy impact, water impact and providing a healthy inner space for its occupants. Sustainable buildings often promote a more livable environment and ambiance within and around them; enriching both the inner and the outer spaces.
Corporate responsibility, long seen as the preserve of companies in developed economies, is gaining ground in developing countries according to a review of ESG practices in 40 large emerging market companies – a new report published by Sustainable Investment Research Analyst Network (SIRAN), a working group of the Social Investment Forum (SIF).
SIRAN has partnered with global sustainable investment specialists EIRIS to assess 40 leading companies in ten emerging markets against key environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria, including indicators on board practice, bribery, human rights, labor standards in the supply chain, health and safety, environment, climate change and biodiversity. Countries assessed in the study include Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Israel, South Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Russia and South Africa.