This category is about the relation between business economies and sustainability and CSR. Company economies have great impact on how much effort they put into their CSR strategy and incorporating green strategies can have an effect on company growth. Topics include: Conscious Capitalism, Social Enterprise, B-Corps, Circular Economy, Sharing Economy

ExxonMobil to Report Publicly on Carbon Asset Risk

It seems like a huge deal for a several reasons: The oil major is publicly acknowledging the potential impact of carbon emission limits on its business model and revealing how it assesses the “risk of stranded assets” from climate change, and it did so at the behest of two shareholder groups.

Feds, State Investigate Duke Energy for Illegal Pumping of Coal Ash

Southeast power company Duke Energy is under investigation and facing at least eight state citations for environmental pollution in North Carolina. Its troubles began in February when a holding facility for coal ash burst and polluted the Dan River. Now its facing more problems after an environmental group managed to catch photos of it pumping toxic sludge into a Cape Fear River tributary.

New EPA Emissions Standard Saves Lives, Creates Jobs

New fuel efficiency and emissions standards are creating stronger automotive jobs in the U.S., as research and development firms wind up to meet the challenges, refineries retool and American manufacturers build new components.

EU Renewable Electricity Rises Above 23 Percent But Employment, Investment Falters

The EU continues to be a world leader when it comes to the production and use of renewable energy but fiscal and economic challenges, including reductions in, or the outright elimination of, feed-in tariffs led to drops in sectoral employment, economic activity and investment indicators, according to EurObser’ER’s 2014 EU Renewable Energy Barometer.

California Targets List of Toxic Chemicals in Consumer Products

Last week, California’s Department of Toxic Substance Control unveiled the first stage of its new Safer Consumer Products program, by releasing the names of three types of products that it says contains toxic chemicals that may put Californians at risk. The department says it will use the next 12 months to review these particular chemicals before considering whether to impose a ban against their use. The announcement was welcomed by California’s nonprofit Center for Environmental Health, which has been pushing for better state regulations in the absence of updates in federal regulatory procedures.

How Cloud Computing Can Help Shrink Corporate Energy Consumption

The CDP (formerly Carbon Disclosure Project) estimates that cloud computing could save large U.S. corporate entities up to $12.3 billion in energy costs annually through 2020, and reduce CO2 emissions by 85.7 million metric tons per annum.

Cut the Cord On Your Utility? It Could Be Possible Sooner Than You Think

With performance improving, production volumes rising and costs on the decline, the combination of solar PV and intelligent battery storage systems — dubbed “utility in a box” — will enable more and more electric utility customers throughout the U.S. to cut the cord linking them to utility grids and usher in the end of the centralized electric utility business model, according to a new study.

Emerging Legal Forms Allow Social Entrepreneurs to Blend Mission and Profits

Many are learning that their choice of legal entity can make a big difference for them—in funding, governance and signaling—as they seek to drive positive social change. The two most popular legal forms, each designed with the mission-driven venture in mind, are the “low-profit limited liability company” or “L3C” and the “benefit corporation.”

Alternative Dispute Resolution and the Business and Human Rights Justice Gap

In May 2013, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (“OHCHR”) commissioned Dr. Jennifer Zerk to prepare an analysis of the effectiveness of domestic judicial systems in relation to business involvement in gross human rights abuses. Last week, Dr. Zerk released her report.

A Carbon Tax to Rule Them All

Put simply, a tax shift means to cut one tax and replace it with another—such as to cut income and/or payroll taxes, and put a carbon price in their place. This is called a “tax swap” or “revenue neutrality,” and a diverse group of stakeholders–ranging from Citizens Climate Lobby to ExxonMobil–are coming out in support of it.

Another Banner, Record-Breaking Year for U.S. Solar

With installations surging by 41 percent in 2013 compared to the year before, solar energy is on the cusp of going mainstream, but in only a small number of U.S. states. Ongoing declines in cost and gains in efficiency, along with continued support from investors and federal and state governments, are fueling growth, with the prospect of smart, affordable battery and energy storage systems boding well for the future, according to the SEIA-GTM Research’s “Solar Market Insight Year in Review 2013.”