You might think that the only way these massive coal port projects can be stopped is by an equally massive force. Yet, that is not the case. It’s an executive in Korea, Native-Americans in Washington, lots of people protesting online, and a waitress in White Rock stirring up people who live 100 miles away. It takes the global village.
Shell’s latest report, praised on business and environmental websites, as well as by Amory Lovins of the Rocky Mountain Institute, predicts we are headed for a carbon-free future even as it invests heavily in natural gas projects.
A panel of experts disagreed about exactly how materiality should be used in sustainability reporting. One camp felt that sustainability reporting should be centered around a legal/regulatory view of materiality. The other group felt that sustainability reporting should focus on what matters to a company’s stakeholder groups.
Data shows that the c-suite is heavily invested in corporate social responsibility. It seems to be my fate to explain corporate social responsibility (CSR) to all of my friends (and to a number of strangers!). I suspect that my eyes sometimes glaze with messianic fervor and that some of my listeners start looking for the nearest exit.
Why would a CEO care about CSR? CSRHub’s Bahar Gidwani explains why. One of the smartest folks I know—one of my directors when I was at McKinsey—had time to have a cup of coffee with me last week. During a chat that covered topics ranging from board practices to roof leaks, I told him a bit about CSRHub and our efforts to encourage corporate social responsibility (CSR) and sustainability.
SRI activism works best when rewarding companies that care about being good, whose products sustain life rather than take it. In December, at Seattle’s Newground Social Investment holiday party, the firm’s Founder Bruce Herbert, a leader in SRI, gave a toast in which he applauded Bill McKibben’s leadership in fossil fuel divestiture.
CSRHub marked the fifth anniversary since our founding. It’s a remarkable milestone, and we feel we have accomplished more than anyone thought possible when we first formed our company. Our latest “big data” set contains more than 20,000,000 data elements.
Trust Across America has led an ambitious effort to describe what is causing trust to break down and how to rebuild it. This group has screened 2,500 publicly-traded companies and has identified the ten it considers most trust-worthy. Their work gives us great examples to learn from, but does not help us diagnose and fix the problems faced by the companies who lag behind.
Have CSR department become redundant? Not in the traditional sense, but it’s time to integrate sustainability, which means putting sustainable principles into every facet of business operations.
The growth of sustainability and corporate social responsibility roles or functions that have these responsibilities has grown to encompass a fledgling professional field. People want to do sustainability work and are willing to pay to be trained in the area – are there jobs out there waiting for them?
If you’ve ever watched the tide turn, you know that there is a long period where nothing seems to happen then the water suddenly rushes in. The same thing is happening with sustainability as companies rush to take advantage of a surge of interest from consumers, employees and other stakeholders.
Sustainability is becoming an intrinsic part of corporate competition. What percentage of the world’s large companies would you expect to have special corporate social responsibility areas on their websites? The following chart shows that 75 percent of the 5,000 companies we rate on CSRHub already have these areas.
According to a 2011 study by OgilvyEarth of US consumers, about 16 percent of those surveyed are deeply committed to purchasing green and think of themselves as sustainability-oriented. Facilitating the green consumer’s purchasing decisions, the rise in online transparency tools, like GoodGuide is helping a consumer quickly understand and rate a company’s health, environmental and social practices and impacts.
Can using comparable conservative language get environmental climate change bills passed? When results were parsed by political party, the study counted 42 percent Republicans among the “believers” in rising temperatures. Of course, that still leaves the majority of Republicans that either don’t believe or are still unsure.