This category is about corporate social responsibility (CSR), a form of corporate self-regulation integrated into a business model. The goal of CSR is to embrace responsibility for the company’s actions and encourage a positive impact through its activities on the environment, consumers, employees, communities, stakeholders and all other members of the public sphere.

Real Time Farms Crowd-Sources to Map U.S. Food System

Founded by Karl and Cara Rosaen, Real Time Farms (RTF) is a new crowd-sourcing online food guide that is every foodie’s dream, acting as a restaurant guide, local farm source map, and food artisan storytelling hub all wrapped up into one. As their website boasts, “As crazy as it sounds, our vision is to collectively … Continued

Photo credit: National Solar Power

400 Megawatt Solar Plant Planned for Florida’s Panhandle

National Solar Power will invest $1.5 billion to build the Southeast’s largest solar power farm, a 400MW solar power farm in Florida’s Gadsden County capable of supplying clean, renewable power to some 32,000 homes. Around 400 construction phase and 120 permanent jobs are expected to be created.

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The Electric Car Branding Trick Even Nissan’s LEAF is Missing

In the past ten years, environmentally friendly cars have become a fixture in advertising. First came the Prius. Then BMW claimed its electric batteries boost performance, great for boosting the entire BMW brand. Chevy Volt, an electric hybrid, hypes range, innovation and American values, trying to minimize its differences from traditional cars. Nissan LEAF touts its green credentials, scooping up the ultra-green market.

detainees watched by guard at drug detention center/Photo by HRW

Vietnamese Drug Detention Centers Use Forced Labor for Cashew Processing

A new report released by Human Rights Watch (HRW) entitled The Rehab Archipelago: Forced Labor and Other Abuses in Drug Detention Centers in Southern Vietnam, indicates that drug addicts being detained in government-run “rehabilitation” centers often double as forced-labor camps where detainees process cashew nuts and manufacture other exports in southern Vietnam under harsh conditions … Continued

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Girl Scouts Finally Pledge to Use Certified Palm Oil in Cookies

Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) announced yesterday that they’ve committed to using GreenPalm certified palm oil in their iconic cookies. Starting with the 2012-2013 cookie season, each cookie box will feature the GreenPalm logo. Palm oil is grown primarily in Malaysia and Indonesia, with both countries accounting for 85 percent of all production. One … Continued

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“Tricking” Consumers Into Doing the Right Thing

All sustainable marketers are trying to accomplish the same thing: change consumer behavior. But how do we do this? As part of the green marketing community, we get it in our heads that we know how to stimulate behavior change…but do we really? We tend to think about what would motivate us to change our behaviors, but our behaviors are not the ones that need to be changed.

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ViridiSTOR “Green Box” Reduces Trade Show Waste

Innovations abound throughout the environmental movement, from highly engineered water-and waste management methodologies, to intelligent design and streamlined manufacturing techniques. In attempting to comply with regulatory or stakeholder requirements, companies have explored a variety of clean, green technologies. But sometimes, businesses can make a huge impact with even simple, low-tech ideas that fill a vital niche.

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Is Junk Food Really Cheaper? Maybe Sometimes

The Sunday New York Times Review section ran an interesting piece this week that posed the question, Is Junk Food Really Cheaper? The premise of Mark Bittman’s article was to debunk the often repeated notion that the reason people are obese is because it is cheaper to fill up on calorie-dense junk food than it … Continued

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CouchSurfing Moves from NGO to B-Corps: Bona fide or Bogus?

CouchSurfing International is riding a wave of success since its August 2011 announcement of restructure, from non-profit public charity, to for-profit C-Corporation with B-corps certification and $7.6 million in funding from Omidyar and Benchmark. The web-based homestay organization has more than 3 million profiles created since 2003: pop the beverages and get the beach party going!

…or, not so fast: CouchSurfing (CS) has been hit with a tsunami of protest from its own membership over its reorganization.

Weinreb Group Report: The Rise of the Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO)

The title of Chief Sustainability Officer is a relatively new one—the first CSO of a publicly traded company, Linda Fisher of DuPont, was appointed in 2004. It was two more years until Ed Fox became CSO at Pinnacle West in 2006. Out of roughly 7,000 publicly traded companies found on NYSE or NASDAQ, only 29 … Continued

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Hershey’s Needs to ‘Raise the Bar’ to Meet Fair Labor Practices

The Hershey Company has been accused of using child labor before. It’s rather ironic for a candy company but after they issued their first ever CSR report last year, it looked like the company was trying to turn over a new leaf. However, a new report shows that Hershey is falling behind in upholding its commitment to protect … Continued

Asia Pacific Clean Energy Summit

The U.S. Military’s Plans to Assure Energy Independence

George Kai’iliwai, Director, Resources and Assessment, of the U.S. Pacific Command, recently spoke at the Asia Pacific Clean Energy Summit and Expo, addressing the role of the military in helping solve the world’s energy challenges. According to Ka’iliwai, military technologies are potential game-changers in the energy world. This talk is especially relevant in Hawaii, given … Continued

Food Deserts

Drugstores Selling Produce in Food Deserts: This Has to Work, Right?

We have all heard about food deserts: those dreary, downtrodden, typically inner-city places where it is easier to buy hard drugs than a fresh apple. Grocery stores won’t locate there and corner stores stick to what they know best: junk food, alcohol, and other not-so-fresh dietary items. Residents in these communities must range far and wide for anything fresh and ultimately find themselves giving in to the convenience of locally available canned and fast-food more often than they should.

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H&M Detoxes its Supply Chain

Add H&M to apparel manufacturers including Adidas, Nike, and PUMA that are promising to eliminate toxins from their products while they clean up their supply chains.

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Conservation and Alternative Investment Groups Team Up to Back Forest Conservation Bond Market

WWF has joined the Global Canopy Program and the Climate Bonds Initiative in calling on governments help foster growth of a forest conservation bond market. Thirty billion dollars a year invested in forest conservation bonds would cut deforestation rates in half, thereby assuring that the world’s forests will continue to function as sinks that soak up carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, they assert.