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SC Johnson Named No. 1 2018 Best Workplace in Central America

Mon, 04/30/2018 - 5:02pm

SC Johnson Central America has been recognized as the top 2018 Best Workplace by the Great Place to Work® Institute, ranking No. 1 on this year’s list of companies. This is the 11thconsecutive appearance in the rankings for SC Johnson Central America, and the third consecutive year being ranked No. 1.

“Promoting a culture of respect, inclusion and engagement is incredibly important to us, and SC Johnson Central America embodies those values,” said Fisk Johnson, Chairman and CEO of SC Johnson. “I congratulate the people of SC Johnson Central America for this well-deserved recognition.”

SC Johnson Central America received the highest score on the Great Place to Work® Institute’s culture audit, which evaluates a company’s unique values. The Best Workplaces list is the world’s largest annual study of workplace excellence. The ranking is determined by the results of an employee opinion survey and information provided about company culture, programs and policies.

The Central America team joins SC Johnson Italy, Venezuela, Germany, Greece, United Kingdom, Mexico and Canada on the 2018 list of Best Workplaces.

In the United States, SC Johnson has been included 29 times in Working Mother magazine’s list of the “100 Best Companies for Working Mothers” for its programs and benefits that support working parents including paid family leave, schedule flexibility and advancement of women.

Also in 2017, the company received a perfect score of 100 percent on the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index. This HRC honor marked the 13th time the company earned a perfect score and its 16th year of recognition on the workplace equality list.

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About SC Johnson

SC Johnson is a family company dedicated to innovative, high-quality products, excellence in the workplace and a long-term commitment to the environment and the communities in which it operates. Based in the USA, the company is one of the world's leading manufacturers of household cleaning products and products for home storage, air care, pest control and shoe care, as well as professional products. It markets such well-known brands as GLADE®, KIWI®, OFF!®, PLEDGE®, RAID®, SCRUBBING BUBBLES®, SHOUT®, WINDEX® and ZIPLOC® in the U.S. and beyond, with brands marketed outside the U.S. including AUTAN®, TANA®, BAMA®, BAYGON®, BRISE®, KABIKILLER®, KLEAR®, MR MUSCLE® and RIDSECT®. The 132-year-old company, which generates $10 billion in sales, employs approximately 13,000 people globally and sells products in virtually every country around the world. www.scjohnson.com

iCause Partners With the Recovery Center of Medina County

Mon, 04/30/2018 - 5:02pm

In the Summer of 2017, the Recovery Center of Medina County opened with the goal of strengthening communities through supporting those in recovery. The organization quickly grew and expanded to offer a variety of resources for not only those in recovery, but also their family members, caregivers and more. After partnering with EDWINS Leadership and Restaurant Institute, RCMC began offering advanced services, classes and cutting edge programming to expand their reach in the community.

RCMC is dedicated to serving those in need of recovery resources by providing access to peer support counseling, meetings, life skills and coaching, legal aid, help with locating sober homes and detox facilities, housing and job placement.

The center is not only a place for recovering from substance abuse issues but is also committed to providing the tools necessary to succeed in long-term recovery. The main goal of the Recovery Center is to become a one stop shop for addiction, recovery referrals and resources. It seeks to train, employ and empower those in recovery.

Four years ago, Chef Brandon Chrostowski, Chef Gilbert Brenot and General Manager Michael Flaherty opened EDWINS Leadership & Restaurant Institute: a non-profit French fine dining restaurant geared at teaching and mentoring previously incarcerated individuals and recovering addicts to learn and gain a career in culinary & hospitality.  The program has had immense success and critical acclaim in the rehabilitation and recovery community, and Brandon himself was recognized as one of CNN’s “Heroes” in 2016.

This spring marked one of the most anticipated restaurant openings of the year:  Sérénité Restaurant.  Working in conjunction with the Recovery Center of Medina County and open to anyone in the recovery community wishing to learn the techniques of classic French cuisine and service while earning a living, assistance with job placement, all within an environment of strength and support.

Students will be paid to attend, just like they would be a normal restaurant job, however, over the course of 8 months they will learn every position of the restaurant, complete a short apprenticeship at another fine restaurant, as well as help with job placement upon completion.  Students will also have full access to all of our resources and support that is being built through the Recovery Center of Medina County, including peer support, life skills & coaching, recovery support & sponsorship, legal aid, team building exercises & events, and mentorship.

"We have many programs and events to support the recovery community and we are always looking for volunteers to help out at the center. iCause is the perfect fit for our organization because it allows us to manage events and volunteers in one place. iCause's concept of strengthening and building communities also ties in well with our mission to connect and empower those in recovery." Jessica Hazeltine, Administrative Manager

iCause is a global marketplace for cause with a focus on making an impact and building communities.  Nonprofit sustainability is the main goal with engagement and incentives for individuals, nonprofits, educational institutions, CSR companies, and philanthropists.

This partnership is the one of many on the road to increasing cause engagement!

Learn more about the Recovery Center of Medina County: medinarecoverycenter.org

Learn more about iCause: events.icause.com

Media Contact

Name: Brandy Bright, Director of PR & Media, iCause PBC

E-Mail: brandy.bright@icause.com

Location: Cleveland, Ohio  

Disclaimer: iCause PBC is the source of this content.

Mass Transit Goes Green: Electrified Bus Programs Delivering on the Promise of Zero-Emission Transportation Options for Cities

Mon, 04/30/2018 - 5:02pm

Growing interest in high efficiency, pollution-reducing transit options is propelling investment in new electrified mass transit projects across the United States. Reflecting this trend, Black & Veatch announced it has completed the charging station infrastructure that powers Washington, D.C.’s new electrified mass transit project – the latest move by U.S. cities to reimagine how to sustainably move people across urban landscapes and experience the benefits of clean transportation, both on and off the bus.

The Washington D.C. Circulator System project combines 14 of Proterra’s Catalyst E2 buses, each having a Proterra-provided 50kw charger installed by Black & Veatch along with the related infrastructure. Powered entirely by high-capacity batteries, the buses benefit riders and non-riders alike by eliminating a projected 244,000 pounds of carbon dioxide emission each year. For taxpayers, there’s a bonus: the 14 EV buses will cut the fleet’s fuel and maintenance bills by more than $6 million over the transit vehicles’ typical 12-year life cycle, while displacing nearly 90,000 gallons of diesel fuel annually.

 U.S. cities purchase an estimated 5,000 public transit buses each year, and due to the benefits city officials increasingly are prioritizing electrification of their mass transit offerings. Some 850 municipal electric buses are on order, and there are active proposals for hundreds more. Seattle will roll out 120 new electric buses by 2020, for instance, while Los Angeles is buying 95 electric buses for $138 million – a tenet of that city’s quest to replace its 2,300-bus fleet with EVs by 2030. Keeping many such buses rolling is Black & Veatch’s market-leading design and deployment of more than 1,000 charging sites nationwide, including the large-scale, heavy-duty charging infrastructure electric buses require.

As industry leaders gather this week in Long Beach, California, for a summit about advanced transportation technology, infrastructure solutions like the one being deployed in the nation’s capital are crucial to meeting rising demands for electric vehicles. Success of these projects requires deep collaboration across all stakeholders including transit agencies, utilities, permitting authorities, charging technology providers, engineering and construction services.  Each project in the built environment brings unique challenges and adds to lessons learned to the benefit of the next transit electrification phases.

According to Black & Veatch’s 2018 Strategic Directions: Smart Cities & Utilities Report survey, more than half of smart services providers said the need for charging infrastructure — both via depots and on-route — was the most prohibitive barrier to large-scale electric fleet adoption. The Washington, D.C. project, and others underway, demonstrates that electric buses have lower maintenance costs than their diesel or hybrid counterparts and could change minds about cost. Not long ago, electric buses that were priced at about $1 million apiece have dropped to around $750,000, with upfront cost parity when considering total cost of operation.  As demand and production volume increase, economies of scale will widen that gap in favor of electrification. Over time, transit agencies that don’t electrify will be polluting more and spending more on their legacy fleets.

“With the arrival electrified transit, public transit agencies and utilities must work in concert to develop infrastructure roadmaps that guide them beyond early pilots toward mass deployment. Each system is different and will seek to optimize the best combinations of on-route and depot charging technologies,” said Paul Stith, Director of Strategy & Innovation for Black & Veatch’s Transformative Technologies business and an expert in sustainable transportation and energy storage solutions. “Partnering with an organization with deep EV infrastructure and utility experience like Black & Veatch will ensure infrastructure won’t hold back aggressive EV adoption.”

Editor’s Note:

  • At the Advanced Clean Transportation Expo on May 4 in Long Beach, California, Paul Stith will share his insights during a panel session about costs and considerations for developing charging infrastructure for medium- and heavy-duty commercial vehicles. Stith will discuss engineering and permitting matters involving EVSE installation during the Black & Veatch-sponsored session.

About Black & Veatch 
Black & Veatch is an employee-owned, global leader in building critical human infrastructure in Energy, Water, Telecommunications and Government Services. Since 1915, we have helped our clients improve the lives of people in over 100 countries through consulting, engineering, construction, operations and program management. Our revenues in 2017 were US$3.4 billion. Follow us on www.bv.com and in social media.

Black & Veatch Media Contact Information:

JIM SUHR | +1 913-458-6995 P | +1 314-422-6927 M | SuhrJ@bv.com

24-HOUR MEDIA HOTLINE | +1 866-496-9149

Chevron Fabricated Evidence in U.S. Court to Evade $12b Liability to Indigenous Peoples of Ecuador, Report Says

Mon, 04/30/2018 - 2:02pm

A controversial U.S. trial-level judge ignored undisputed evidence that Chevron paid at least $2 million for false witness testimony and fabricated other evidence to obtain a discredited civil “racketeering” (or RICO) decision that company lawyers are now trying to use in Canada to block enforcement of the $12 billion pollution judgment from Ecuador, according to a report Chevron’s RICO Fraud

Written by lawyers for the Ecuadorian Indigenous peoples and farmer communities that won the environmental judgment against Chevron, the report comes on the heels of a tough week for the oil major in Canadian courts. A three-judge panel in the Court of Appeal of Ontario shut down a Chevron lawyer when he tried to suggest the RICO matter should stop a lawsuit brought by the Ecuadorians to seize company assets in the country to enforce their judgment. The Ecuadorians seeking to force Chevron to comply with the judgment have now won three consecutive appellate court victories in Canada, including one before the country’s Supreme Court. 

A fourth consecutive favorable decision in Canada for the Ecuadorians – the Ontario appellate court is expected to rule this summer after argument on April 17-18 – would allow them to try to seize Chevron assets currently held by the company’s wholly-owned Canadian subsidiary to pay for their judgment. The pollution judgment against Chevron issued in 2011 based on 105 technical evidentiary reports showing the oil major dumped billions of gallons of cancer-causing oil waste onto Indigenous ancestral lands. It was later affirmed unanimously by Ecuador’s highest court in the venue where the company insisted the trial be held.

To try to block the asset collection effort, Chevron has tried to argue Chevron Canada is a separate and independent company even though 100% of its shares are owned by Chevron. The decision is critical because of all of Chevron’s estimated $15 billion to $25 billion worth of assets in Canada are held by Chevron Canada. (See this summary of the evidence against Chevron.)

The report about Chevron’s fraud rebuts 12 false or distorted findings by U.S. trial judge Lewis A. Kaplan in the RICO case. The findings were based primarily on discredited testimony from an admittedly corrupt Chevron witness paid $2 million by the company to claim that lawyers for the Ecuadorians offered a bribe to the Ecuador trial judge in exchange for “ghostwriting” the judgment. The Chevron witness, Alberto Guerra, later admitted he had lied on the stand after being coached for 53 days by Chevron’s lawyers. (See here and here for media reports.)

The report also documents Judge Kaplan’s hostility toward the Ecuadorians and their lawyers in a proceeding that amounted to a “Dickensian farce”, according to a legal motion filed by prominent U.S. lawyer John Keker, who participated in the case (see here for background). Kaplan refused to seat a jury and committed numerous procedural violations to favor Chevron, including allowing secret testimony from witnesses whose identities were concealed from the defense, according to the report. Kaplan also authorized Chevron to secretly pay the fees of a court official while failing to disclose his financial ties to Chevron while presiding over the trial.

The report is being put in the public domain after dozens of law scholarsenvironmental groups, and human rights organizations urged reversal of Judge Kaplan’s ruling on the grounds that it failed to consider Chevron’s fabrication of evidence and overstretched the authority of the U.S. to judiciary to interfere with court decisions in other countries, said Patricio Salazar, a lawyer who represent the Ecuadorians. A U.S. appellate court later affirmed Kaplan’s RICO decision without any independent review of his problematic findings.

Just last week – apparently in response to the fact the Canadian court refused to hear argument about the RICO findings – Judge Kaplan again tried to bar the Ecuadorian rainforest villagers from collecting on the judgment in the entire world, even in Canada. That trial-level decision, like many Kaplan has issued, was widely condemned as a violation of international law and is seen by experts as an attack on Canada’s sovereignty, which has its own laws governing the enforcement of foreign judgments. A previous attempt in 2011 by Kaplan to issue an order from his trial court purportedly barring enforcement of the Ecuador judgment in the entire world was overturned on appeal in the United States.

Both Chevron and Judge Kaplan seem increasingly anxious over recent setbacks for the oil giant in what is shaping up to be a historic campaign by the Ecuadorian Indigenous peoples and farmer communities who live in the affected area. 

Last December, the Amazon Defense Coalition of Ecuador (FDA) – the NGO group enforcing the judgment – signed a joint protocol with Canada’s powerful national Indigenous federation (Assembly of First Nations) to hold Chevron accountable for causing environmental harms in both countries. Canada National Chief Perry Bellegarde and former Canada National Chief Phil Fontaine sat in court in Toronto with the Ecuadorians; Fontaine and Grand Chief Ed John harshly criticized Chevron for failing to address the concerns of the Indigenous peoples after a tour of the affected area last September.

Another prominent Canadian Indigenous leader, Cree lawyer Willie Littlechild, blasted Chevron over its Ecuador pollution problem two weeks ago before a plenary session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues in New York. "This is considered the world's worst oil-related environmental catastrophe," he said. "The peoples of the region have not only seen their ancestral lands drastically reduced and restricted, but also poisoned, degraded, and destroyed." 

The Chevron fraud report explains how the paid-for Chevron witness, Alberto Guerra, admitted under oath in a separate arbitration proceeding that he lied on the stand before Judge Kaplan. Later, a forensic analysis by one of the world’s leading computer experts scientifically debunked Guerra’s ghostwriting story. Both of these critical developments were ignored by Judge Kaplan, who has been subject to harsh reviews by lawyers across a number of cases for his perceived pro-business bias and lack of neutrality. 

Guerra’s changing stories about a bribe were honed in daily coaching sessions with Chevron lawyers at the U.S. law firm of Gibson Dunn & Crutcher that spanned several weeks, according to Guerra’s own admissions. Chevron is still paying Guerra a large salary, housing costs, health care and his personal income taxes while maintaining him in a secret location in the U.S., according to court records. The company agreed to pay Guerra $12,000 monthly for no work other than being a witness under the company’s control, according to his contract with Chevron. 

(For more background about the corrupt acts committed by Chevron and Guerra, see here and here. For background on the many procedural flaws in Judge Kaplan’s RICO proceeding, see here.) 

The Ecuadorians have long claimed that Chevron officials and its outside lawyers conspired to fabricate false evidence through Guerra’s testimony and present it to U.S. courts as part of a long-running campaign to evade paying the Ecuador liability, which was issued based on overwhelming evidence in the venue where the company had accepted jurisdiction. Lawyers for the villagers also have asked the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate whether the payments to Guerra violated criminal statutes. (See here for a criminal referral letter of Chevron to the DOJ.) 

The forensic analysis, conducted under the auspices of an international investor arbitration panel overseeing a lawsuit filed by Chevron against Ecuador’s government, proved the Ecuador trial judge opened and saved a Word document that became the judgment more than 400 times over a three-month period prior to its issuance. This contradicts Chevron’s claim based on the Guerra testimony that the judgment was written by the plaintiffs and given to the judge on a flash drive. 

The report also names some of the individuals at Chevron law firm Gibson Dunn who orchestrated the fabrication of evidence on behalf of the company. They include Randy Mastro, the former deputy mayor of New York City under the administration of current Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani. Gibson Dunn advertises itself as a “rescue squad” for scandal-plagued clients, but the firm frequently has been criticized and sanctioned for ethical violations.

In the Chevron case, a federal judge in Oregon scolded the firm for trying to harass a non-profit group that was working to assist the Ecuadorian legal team. In an echo of its current problems in the Chevron case, Gibson Dunn recently was sanctioned by the High Court of London for fabricating evidence to help frame a political opponent of a client from Djibouti. Montana’s Supreme Court also accused the firm of engaging in “legal thuggery” and fined it $9.9 million.

Other amicus briefs filed before U.S. courts (see here and here) argue that Judge Kaplan’s RICO decision violates international law and amounts to an unconstitutional SLAPP-style lawsuit. SLAPP lawsuits are designed by corporate or governmental entities to harass opponents and to silence criticism in violation of Free Speech guarantees in the U.S. Constitution and international law.

After an eight-year trial that lasted from 2003 to 2011, the Ecuador court found that Chevron dumped billions of gallons of toxic waste into the rainforest when it operated more than 400 well sites (under the Texaco brand) from 1964 to 1992. The company’s sub-standard operational practices decimated Indigenous culture and caused an outbreak of cancer that has killed or threatens to kill thousands of people, according to independent health studies

As evidence against it in Ecuador mounted, Chevron began to attack the country’s courts while threatening the villagers with a “lifetime of litigation” if they persisted. “We will fight this until hell freezes over, and then fight it out on the ice,” said Chevron’s General Counsel, Charles James. Chevron has used at least 60 law firms and 2,000 lawyers to defend the company since the inception of the case; Donziger litigated pro se in the RICO case for several months against 114 lawyers from Gibson Dunn.

Worldwide Evidence Foods From Saltwater Agriculture are Better for Humans and Climate

Fri, 04/27/2018 - 4:58pm

Ethical Markets released today its 2018 Green Transition Scoreboard® finding $9.3 trillion of private investments in green sectors worldwide, cumulatively since 2007. This 2018 report: "CAPTURING CO2 WHILE IMPROVING HUMAN NUTRITION & HEALTH" also focuses on how productive capture of CO2 is making useful products and how expanding production of food in saltwater agriculture can achieve both better human nutrition and reduce climate risk.

The report’s lead author, science policy veteran Hazel Henderson, CEO of Ethical Markets says ”We found over-investment in the planet’s 3% freshwater, overlooking the other 97% saltwater and the many varieties of salt-loving (halophyte) plants that already provide human food, grown on the 40% of degraded and desert lands, e.g. the highly-nutritious grain: quinoa, available in many supermarkets.” 

The report‘s co-author, Tim Nash, Founder of Good Investing, assembles the research on the private investments in green sectors the Scoreboard tracks in Renewable Energy, Efficiency, Life Systems, Green Construction and Corporate Green R&D. Tim adds, “Green sectors are continuing to grow rapidly, outperforming most traditional sectors. At this rate, we will surpass $10 trillion of private investments in the global green economy this year”. 

Many investors, start-ups and new opportunities are found in all green sectors, as well as in these new approaches: the rapidly-growing plant protein markets serving the widespread growth of vegetarianism, as well as in new uses for carbon and CO2, citing hundreds of statistics and references. 

The report shows that these trends in better nutrition and increased carbon capture and re-use are also good news for the planet. "Pinpointing these investments and opportunities for desert-greening and using CO2 to make plastics, cement and other useful products only requires a new perspective...beyond existing cognitive biases including herd behavior in markets and theory-induced blindness! "says Henderson". 

About Ethical Markets, Certified B Corporation (www.ethicalmarkets.com): 
Founded in 2004 with a mission to reform markets and metrics while helping accelerate the global transition from fossil-fueled early industrialism to cleaner, healthier, inclusive knowledge-richer green societies everywhere. Its "Ethical Markets" TV series is distributed globally to colleges and libraries by www.films.com or free at www.ethicalmarkets.tv. This global, network of networks connects ethical investors, asset managers, green entrepreneurs, NGO leaders and academics. It sponsors the asset EthicMark® Awards for Advertising that uplifts the Human Spirit and Society, with nominations for its 2018 Awards now open at www.ethicmark.org, where past winning campaigns can also be viewed. A full list of information services at www.ethicalmarkets.com. 

SC Johnson Canada Recognized for Workplace Excellence

Fri, 04/27/2018 - 1:58pm

SC Johnson Canada has been recognized as a 2018 Best Workplace by the Great Place to Work® Institute. The organization, which has been included on the list of Best Workplaces 11 times since 2006, ranked No. 45 on this year’s list of companies.

“I congratulate the team in Canada for being recognized as a great place to work,” said Fisk Johnson, Chairman and CEO of SC Johnson. “Earning a spot on this year’s list is a testament to the policies and procedures the team has put in place to foster a culture of respect, trust and pride.”

SC Johnson Canada’s success can be attributed to its commitment to being a fair employer with progressive policies that create an environment of respect and camaraderie. The Best Workplaces list is the world’s largest annual study of workplace excellence. The ranking is determined by the results of an employee opinion survey and information provided about company culture, programs and policies.

The Canada team joins SC Johnson Italy, Venezuela, Germany, Greece, Mexico and United Kingdom on the 2018 list of Best Workplaces.

In the United States, SC Johnson has been included 29 times in Working Mother magazine’s list of the “100 Best Companies for Working Mothers” for its programs and benefits that support working parents including paid family leave, schedule flexibility and advancement of women.

Also in 2017, the company received a perfect score of 100 percent on the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index. This HRC honor marked the 13th time the company earned a perfect score and its 16th year of recognition on the workplace equality list.

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Contact:

SC Johnson Global Public Affairs

USPublicAffairs@scj.com

262-260-2440

About SC Johnson

SC Johnson is a family company dedicated to innovative, high-quality products, excellence in the workplace and a long-term commitment to the environment and the communities in which it operates. Based in the USA, the company is one of the world's leading manufacturers of household cleaning products and products for home storage, air care, pest control and shoe care, as well as professional products. It markets such well-known brands as GLADE®, KIWI®, OFF!®, PLEDGE®, RAID®, SCRUBBING BUBBLES®, SHOUT®, WINDEX® and ZIPLOC® in the U.S. and beyond, with brands marketed outside the U.S. including AUTAN®, TANA®, BAMA®, BAYGON®, BRISE®, KABIKILLER®, KLEAR®, MR MUSCLE® and RIDSECT®. The 132-year-old company, which generates $10 billion in sales, employs approximately 13,000 people globally and sells products in virtually every country around the world. www.scjohnson.com

International Paper and the Nature Conservancy Join Forces to Advance the Science of Climate Smart Forestry

Fri, 04/27/2018 - 10:58am

International Paper and The Nature Conservancy (TNC) announced an agreement to collaborate on the development of ‘natural climate solutions’- the conservation, restoration and improved forest management techniques that increase carbon storage and avoid greenhouse-gas emissions in forest landscapes. The collaboration will focus on the expansion of Reduced-Impact Logging for Carbon (RIL-C) and its integration with forest certification.

RIL-C is a set of practices pioneered by TNC that balance the economic needs of forest-based communities and businesses with environmental goals, especially climate mitigation. The collaboration will initially focus on implementing these practices in key priority tropical forest regions.

Better forest management is one of our planet’s most promising natural climate solutionsi, with the potential to reduce vast amounts of greenhouse gas emissions. Forest certification can ensure sustainable, socially equitable and legally sourced timber production from natural forests, while strengthening a business model that values working forests and helps combat deforestation.

“We are committed to advancing sustainable forest management and are thrilled to work with TNC on this exciting project,” said Sophie Beckham, senior manager, Natural Capital Stewardship, International Paper. “Our investments in forest restoration and ensuring the health of working forests help increase forest carbon stocks and mitigate climate change.”

TNC’s Managing Director for Global Lands, Justin Adams, added: “About half of the planet’s remaining forests are managed for timber production. Improved forest management can not only reduce the direct impacts of logging and improve productivity, but can also increase the likelihood that forests remain forests.”

Funding provided by International Paper will help develop toolkits that will include carbon emissions measurement guidelines to detect various levels of forest degradation and impacts on biodiversity and regional best practices that avoid emissions while maintaining forest harvests. By accounting for carbon emissions data, forest managers will have a more detailed and accurate snapshot of a forest’s environmental role and economic potential.

This project is an example of the next generation of conservation measurement tools that are revealing large conservation opportunities while simultaneously supporting economic livelihoods.

ABOUT THE NATURE CONSERVANCY
The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at an unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in 72 countries, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit www.nature.org or follow @nature_press on Twitter.

ABOUT INTERNATIONAL PAPER 
International Paper (NYSE: IP) is a leading global producer of renewable fiber-based packaging, pulp and paper products with manufacturing operations in North America, Latin America, Europe, North Africa, India and Russia. We produce corrugated packaging products that protect and promote goods, and enable worldwide commerce; pulp for diapers, tissue and other personal hygiene products that promote health and wellness and papers that facilitate education and communication. We are headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., and employ approximately 52,000 colleagues located in more than 24 countries. Net sales for 2017 were $22 billion. For more information about International Paper, our products and global citizenship efforts, please visit internationalpaper.com.

Contacts:
The Nature Conservancy
Kirsten Weymouth Ullman, Senior Media Relations Manager – Global Communications
Kullman@tnc.org
+ 1 703.841.5371

International Paper
Thomas J. Ryan
Thomas.Ryan2@ipaper.com
+ 1 901.419.4333

Conservancy-led research indicates that forests offer the largest natural climate solution available: reducing deforestation, restoring forests, and improving forest management can achieve two-thirds of natural climate solutions’ mitigation potential, particularly in the tropics. Griscom, B., Adams, J., Ellis, P., Houghton, R.A., Lomax, G., Miteva, D.A., W. H. Schlesinger, D.S., Woodbury, P., Zganjar, C., Blackman, A., Campari, J., Conant, R.T., Delgado, C., Elias, P., Hamsik, M., Kiesecker, J., Landis, E., Polasky, S., Putz, F.E., Sanderman, J., Siikamäki, J., Silvius, M., Wollenberg, L., Fargione, J., Conservancy, T.N., Nichols, M., 2017. Natural climate solutions. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. doi:10.1073/pnas.1710465114

oekom Corporate Responsibility Review 2018: Ongoing Upwards Trend in Sustainability Management

Fri, 04/27/2018 - 10:58am

ISS-oekom’s Corporate Responsibility Review 2018, the annual report on sustainability in corporate management published today, affirms the continued upward trend in improved corporate sustainability observed in recent years. According to the report, the share of companies in industrialized countries with “good” and “very good” ratings stands at 17.2 percent - slightly higher compared with the previous year. Moreover, and for the first time since launch of the Corporate Responsibility Review in 2009, the group of companies with a “medium” assessment, at 43.6 percent, is larger than the share of companies assessed to have an “inadequate” sustainability performance. The latter group now stands at 39.2 percent, which is the lowest level to date. A comparable trend, but at a lower level, can be observed for companies in emerging markets.

The widely regarded annual report by ISS-oekom, one of the world's leading ESG research and rating agencies, is now in its 10th year and is based on the results of the oekom Corporate Rating. Its publication also marks the 25th anniversary of the company, which was founded in 1993 as oekom research and which joined the Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) group of companies in March of this year.  

Tops and Bottoms by Industries
The best rated sector in the industrialized countries is the Household & Consumer Goods sector, with an average rating of the included companies of 43.07 points (on a scale of 0 to 100), closely followed by Health Care Facilities & Services with a 41.18 point average. Taking third place is the Semiconductors sector with 40.51 points. At the other end of the scale, the Retail industry (24.53 points) and, as in the previous year, the Real Estate industry (23.48 points) had the lowest average points. The clearest drop in the average rating was in the Automotive and Food & Beverages sectors which dropped 6.35 points and 1.79 points, respectively, over the previous year. 

Country Distribution and the Top Rated
The countries with the highest number of locally-headquartered companies ranked in the top three positions within their respective sectors were Germany and France (12 companies each). They are followed by the U.K. with 10 companies and Switzerland and the U.S., each with nine companies in the top three positions.

German companies that occupy first place in their respective industries are Evonik Industries, Drägerwerk, Henkel, SAP and Deutsche Bahn. French companies in first place are Valeo, Peugeot, Schneider Electric, Amundi, CNP Assurances and Sanofi. U.K. companies that have received the highest ratings in their industry are Berkeley Group Holdings, Coca-Cola European Partners, Relx and British Land Company.

Opportunities and Risks: Product Evaluation and Climate Management
In addition to the evaluation of the Corporate Ratings, the CR Review 2018 also contains evaluations from ISS-oekom’s Sustainability Solutions Assessments and Carbon Risk Ratings. 

The Sustainability Solutions Assessment assesses information and data on the extent to which a company’s product and service portfolio contribute to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Of the more than 2,300 companies covered, nearly 36 percent have been assessed as actively contributing to achieving the SDGs with their products and services, while the products and services of 22 percent of the companies do not address the goals. 

In contrast to these generally positive trends, the assessment of the climate-related performance of companies as reflected in the Carbon Risk Ratings shows a different result: at the end of 2017, the average oekom Carbon Risk Rating (oCRR) score for all companies in the corporate rating universe was just 25.7 points on a scale of 0 (worst) to 100 (best). Only 5.6% were considered to be "climate performers" while only 2.8% were judged to be climate leaders".

25 Years as a Leading Monitor of Sustainability
Overall, the results of the ISS-oekom CR Review show that the general, upward trend towards implementing corporate sustainability practices and policies continues. The concept of sustainable development now has a completely different status than it had when ISS-oekom was founded 25 years ago - not only among companies but also among investors and the public. This development can be credited to the many actors who, over a generation, have emphasized the need and benefits of this approach from a variety of perspectives.

“There is growing consensus today with regard to the understanding that ecological and social issues can be material for the long-term success of a company and thus represent central starting points for investors in order to optimally adjust the risk-return ratio,” said Robert Haßler, co-founder and Head of ISS-oekom. ”We believe our work has contributed to the fundamental improvements evidenced today and compared with the early 1990s.”

The CR Review 2018 can be downloaded here

About the oekom Corporate Responsibility Review
As an annual report on global corporate responsibility, the oekom Corporate Responsibility Review has been documenting the key developments in integrating sustainability criteria into corporate management since 2009. The analyses of the overall ESG performance and evaluation of controversies are based on approximately 1,600 major international companies based in the industrialized countries and around 800 companies in the emerging markets. Also, the assessment within the oekom Sustainability Solutions Assessment refers to a group of more than 2,300 companies. Wherever possible, individual evaluations refer to the entire oekom universe. 

About ISS-oekom
Since March 2018, ISS-oekom has been a member of the ISS family, providing high quality solutions for sustainable and responsible investment and corporate governance. Originally founded in 1993 and formerly known as oekom research, the company is one of the world’s leading ESG research and rating agencies for sustainable investments with an unsurpassed rating methodology and quality recognition. ISS-oekom analyzes businesses and countries with respect to their environmental social and governance performance. As an experienced partner of institutional investors and financial service providers, we analyse the level of responsibility exercised by equity and bond issuers towards society and the environment. Under the new ownership, ISS-oekom completes the ESG research and RI services offerings of ISS, making it a worldwide pure-player in the area of RI Research & Solutions. ISS-oekom is headed by Robert Haßler, former CEO and co-founder of oekom-research.

More information: www.oekom-research.com and www.issgovernance.com

Contact:
Dieter Niewierra, Media & Communications Lead
ISS-oekom
+49-89-5441-8457
dieter.niewierra@iss-oekom.com

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Consumers Energy Receives National Recognition for Sixth Time as ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year

Fri, 04/27/2018 - 10:58am

Consumers Energy is being honored for the sixth time in seven years for its work to reduce energy waste with the ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence Award.

“Our energy efficiency programs represent our commitment to hometown service, helping Michigan households and businesses lower their energy bills by over $1.5 billion since 2009,” said Patti Poppe, Consumers Energy’s president and chief executive officer, who received the award in Washington, D.C. last week.

This month, ENERGY STAR honored Jackson as the nation’s second-most energy efficient small city. Jackson has 37 ENERGY STAR-certified energy efficient buildings, second only to Midland, Texas.

Consumers Energy worked directly with building owners in Jackson to reduce their energy use and become ENERGY STAR-certified.

“We are excited to see our hometown of Jackson is well on its way to being the most energy-efficient small city in America, and we won’t stop until Jackson is No. 1,” Poppe said.

Consumers Energy this week also announced a new collaboration with Nest to provide 10,000 free thermostats to eligible Michigan households over the next three years, an effort to help those most in need to reduce their energy bills.

Consumers Energy offers a variety of energy efficiency programs for all homes and businesses. The energy provider also has carried out efforts that raise public awareness of reducing energy waste.

Businesses can learn more about reducing energy waste at www.ConsumersEnergy.com/mybusiness. Residents can learn more at www.ConsumersEnergy.com/myhome.

About Consumers Energy

Consumers Energy, Michigan’s largest energy provider, is the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy (NYSE: CMS), providing natural gas and/or electricity to 6.7 million of the state’s 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.

About ENERGY STAR

  • The 2018 Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence Awards were given to 163 organizations that have demonstrated leadership in energy efficiency. The honor is the highest offered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
  • Since 1992, ENERGY STAR and its partners have saved American families and businesses $450 billion in energy costs.
  • For a complete list of 2018 winners, visit www.energystar.gov/awardwinners.

Media Contacts 

Brian Wheeler, 517-788-2394, or Debra Dodd, 517-545-8711

For more information about Consumers Energy, go to www.ConsumersEnergy.com.

Check Out Consumers Energy on Social Media

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ConsumersEnergyMichigan/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/consumersenergy

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/consumersenergy

Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/consumersenergy/

Ziploc® Brand Honors Teachers as Super Heroes with #MoreThanATeacher

Fri, 04/27/2018 - 7:58am

Ziploc® brand is redefining what it means to be a super hero and honoring teachers around the country. In celebration of National Superhero Day April 28 and National Teacher Day May 8, Ziploc® brand is unmasking a new initiative, #MoreThanATeacher, which calls upon everyone to thank the real-life super heroes among us – teachers – by helping to provide resources to empower teachers and encourage students and the public to recognize the heroic impact they have on our lives. 

To give teachers nationwide extra superpowers, Ziploc® brand is pledging $100,000 to DonorsChoose.org, which will provide 100 teachers across the country with funds for various classroom projects. Purchases of Ziploc® brand products, including its new line inspired by Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Infinity War, will help support Ziploc® brand’s donation. The brand will also drop off Ziploc® brand products featuring Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Infinity War designs to each teacher’s school.

“The impression teachers make on our world goes beyond anything fictional super heroes do in the movies or comic books – their positive influence sets the stage for generations to come and we’re so excited to celebrate real super heroes,” said Kelly M. Semrau, Senior Vice President – Global Corporate Affairs, Communication and Sustainability at SC Johnson. “We applaud the great work teachers do every day, and we’re looking forward to seeing the recognition students, former students and parents give teachers through this effort.”

"Students across America know their teachers are real-life super heroes. DonorsChoose.org is proud to partner with Ziploc to honor these teachers, by bringing their classroom dreams to life on National Superhero Day,” said Katie Bisbee, Chief Marketing Officer of DonorsChoose.org.

Ziploc® brand is encouraging people to thank a teacher who changed their life using the hashtag #MoreThanATeacher on social media. To kick off the conversation, Ziploc® brand commissioned portraits to honor three teachers who represent super heroes to former students. The portraits were creatively constructed with Ziploc® brand bags and containers filled with mementos that represent the ways each teacher was a super hero. Ziploc® brand surprised the teachers with an unveiling ceremony alongside these former students, and the teachers will also be featured in a series of videos on Ziploc® brand’s social media pages.

The specific teachers honored include:

  • Reginald Wills, History teacher at Washington Latin Public Charter School in Silver Spring, Maryland
  • Kelli Morrill, Speech teacher at Blue Springs South High School in Pleasant Hill, Missouri
  • Paul Peterson, Technology teacher at Harpursville Middle/High School in Harpursville, New York

Wills is just one example of a super hero who has inspired and changed the lives of his students as a 25-year history teacher at Washington Latin Public Charter School in Silver Spring, Maryland. One of his students, Raval, became a writer after Wills gifted her a poetry book. Others found a new perspective on the Civil Rights movement after Wills took them on a field trip to mimic the iconic Freedom Rider experience. Morrill and Peterson’s students have equally moving stories about the impact these real-life super heroes have had on their lives.

Ziploc® brand has a longstanding commitment to create innovative, high-quality products and support communities around the country. #MoreThanATeacher is another way the brand is connecting with these communities, specifically teachers, students and parents, to enrich their educational and classroom experiences.

For information on Ziploc® brand products, visit the official Ziploc® brand Facebook fan page at facebook.com/Ziploc

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CONTACT

SC Johnson Public Affairs

262-260-2440

USPublicAffairs@scj.com

About SC Johnson

SC Johnson is a family company dedicated to innovative, high-quality products, excellence in the workplace and a long-term commitment to the environment and the communities in which it operates. Based in the USA, the company is one of the world's leading manufacturers of household cleaning products and products for home storage, air care, pest control and shoe care, as well as professional products. It markets such well-known brands as GLADE®, KIWI®, OFF!®, PLEDGE®, RAID®, SCRUBBING BUBBLES®, SHOUT®, WINDEX® and ZIPLOC® in the U.S. and beyond, with brands marketed outside the U.S. including AUTAN®, TANA®, BAMA®, BAYGON®, BRISE®, KABIKILLER®, KLEAR®, MR MUSCLE® and RIDSECT®. The 132-year-old company, which generates $10 billion in sales, employs approximately 13,000 people globally and sells products in virtually every country around the world. www.scjohnson.com

SC Johnson's Dedication to Protecting Families Recognized by EcoHealth Alliance

Fri, 04/27/2018 - 7:58am

In honor of its longstanding efforts to help protect consumers against mosquito-borne diseases like Zika and dengue fever, SC Johnson today announced it has received an award from EcoHealth Alliance, a nonprofit organization that focuses on pandemic prevention and conservation. The award highlights the company’s ongoing commitment to provide donations and educational materials across the globe to families most at risk. EcoHealth Alliance presents this award annually to a company or individual who is leading the way in social responsibility or sustainability. Past recipients include L’Oréal, Colgate-Palmolive and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

“Mosquito-borne diseases can have a devastating effect on individuals and communities, and we remain committed to helping protect the most vulnerable,” said Fisk Johnson, Chairman and CEO of SC Johnson. “We are honored to be recognized by EcoHealth Alliance for our decades of expertise in insect science and continuing efforts to provide education on mosquito protection to families around the world.”

EcoHealth Alliance paid tribute to SC Johnson’s commitment to using education as a tool to help families protect against mosquito-borne diseases. The company was also recognized for delivering on its promise to donate $15 million in pest control products and financial support to help at-risk families combat mosquitoes that may carry the Zika virus. The donations were distributed through collaborations with charitable organizations in response to the 2016 global outbreak of Zika and dengue fever.

“It was our delight to applaud SC Johnson for its efforts to battle the spread of mosquito-borne diseases,” said Dr. Peter Daszak, President of EcoHealth Alliance. “Their history of philanthropy with regards to pest control is a perfect fit with the evening’s theme of Standing Between You and the Next Pandemic.”

The award was presented to SC Johnson at EcoHealth Alliance’s annual benefit on April 26 in New York City. The evening’s theme of “Standing Between You and the Next Pandemic” emphasized EcoHealth Alliance’s unique One Health approach – that the health of humans, animals and the environment is linked to global health and conservation. More than 75 percent of emerging infectious diseases are of animal origin and one-third of those outbreaks can be linked to wildlife displacement due to deforestation. EcoHealth Alliance believes that it is possible to save lives, protect wildlife and preserve the environment at the same time.

SC Johnson and Insect Science

SC Johnson is the world’s largest manufacturer of insect repellents and household insecticides, including OFF!®, Autan®, Raid® and Baygon®. For more than 60 years, SC Johnson entomologists have studied insects at the SC Johnson Institute of Insect Science for Family Health located in Racine, Wisconsin. The SC Johnson Institute is one of the largest private, urban entomology research facilities in the world.

To further drive education and provide resources to families, SC Johnson offers tips and videos on how families can protect themselves from mosquito bites at www.scjohnson.com/mosquitoes. The site is available in 13 languages and videos on the site have been viewed nearly 25 million times.

About SC Johnson

SC Johnson is a family company dedicated to innovative, high-quality products, excellence in the workplace and a long-term commitment to the environment and the communities in which it operates. Based in the USA, the company is one of the world's leading manufacturers of household cleaning products and products for home storage, air care, pest control and shoe care, as well as professional products. It markets such well-known brands as GLADE®, KIWI®, OFF!®, PLEDGE®, RAID®, SCRUBBING BUBBLES®, SHOUT®, WINDEX® and ZIPLOC® in the U.S. and beyond, with brands marketed outside the U.S. including AUTAN®, TANA®, BAMA®, BAYGON®, BRISE®, KABIKILLER®, KLEAR®, MR MUSCLE® and RIDSECT®. The 132-year-old company, which generates $10 billion in sales, employs approximately 13,000 people globally and sells products in virtually every country around the world. www.scjohnson.com

About EcoHealth Alliance

Building on over 45 years of groundbreaking science, EcoHealth Alliance is a global nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting wildlife, environmental, and public health from the emergence of disease. Approximately 60 percent of emerging infectious diseases like Ebola, HIV, Zika, SARS, MERS, and West Nile virus have all originated in animals before spilling over to human populations. Using environmental and health data covering the past 60 years, EcoHealth Alliance scientists created the first-ever global disease hotspots map that identified at-risk regions to determine where research and field work are needed to help predict and prevent the next pandemic crisis. That work is the foundation of EcoHealth Alliance's rigorous, science-based approach working in more than 30 countries worldwide. EcoHealth Alliance's strength is founded on innovations in research, training, global partnerships, capacity building, and policy initiatives. www.ecohealthalliance.org

Act Responsibly. Enable Sustainability.

Fri, 04/27/2018 - 4:57am

2018 International Women's Day Forum

Fri, 04/27/2018 - 4:57am

Our eighth annual International Women's Day Forum, Partner With Purpose: Business for Gender Equality, hosted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and the U.S. Department of State, will gather the business community, civil society, and government representatives to advance women’s and girls’ empowerment around the globe.

Achieving full gender equality means overcoming a host of complex issues, including many institutional and societal barriers that prevent progress. Tackling these challenges will require creativity and innovation from across sectors.

This year’s forum will focus on how private and public stakeholders can combine their resources, skills, and expertise for greater sustainability and impact. Equality is in reach, but will only be realized through collaboration.

Join more than 300 stakeholders March 6-7, 2018 at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington, DC and share how you’re working to achieve gender equality in the workplace, marketplace, and community.

This year's annual International Women's Day Forum topics will include:

• Workforce and Skills Development

• Leadership, Diversity, and Inclusion

• Entrepreneurship and Value Chain

• STEM

• Women in Tech

• The Digital Divide

• Financial Inclusion and Access to Capital

• Women’s Health

• Girls’ Education

• The Care Economy

• Gender-Based Violence

• Gender Data

• Building Capacity of Displaced Girls and Women

• And more!

Learn more and register with early bird pricing between now and February 2!

Aspecta Achieves First JUST Label for a Chinese Manufacturing Facility

Thu, 04/26/2018 - 4:57pm

Metroflor announced that the Elegant Home-Tech Company Limited (formally known as Elegant Plastics) facility in Zhangjiagang, China, which manufactures its Aspecta commercial LVT product, received the first-ever JUST label for a Chinese company and the first JUST label for a LVT flooring manufacturer. To receive the JUST label, the company had to provide numerous policies for public review and be rated on a wide range of metrics including safety, diversity, worker benefits and community engagement.

The JUST platform was created by the International Living Future Institute (ILFI) as an innovative way for organizations to be transparent about their entire operations beyond product ingredients. Rather than a certification program, JUST is essentially a nutrition label for socially just and equitable organizations. The program requires reporting and documentation on a range of organization- and employee-related indicators, each requiring specific and measurable accountabilities recognized on a One, Two or Three Star Level, which are published on the JUST label.

Said Aspecta’s Chief Sustainability Officer Rochelle Routman, “The idea of pursuing a JUST label for a Chinese factory is courageous and profound. By accomplishing this, we have created a benchmark for our factory as well as the entire U.S. manufacturing sector sourcing from factories in Asia. The world is moving past the stigma of ‘Made in China’ because modern factories such as Elegant Home-Tech have made great strides in worker experience, quality control, and product and social transparency. It is Aspecta that is leading this movement to take transparency beyond US borders.”

“I am so proud of our team’s commitment to both transparency and social responsibility - this flows through our veins and informs everything we do in every part of our global enterprise,” said Harlan Stone, Aspecta Chairman of the Board. “If a company cares about the quality of life of their employees, this will be reflected in their commitment to excellence and the in quality of the products. What a virtuous cycle this can become! We are first to prove this out, and we hope many others will follow this example.”

CEO of Elegant Home-Tech, Jin Song, fully supports the JUST effort and understands the need for transparency at the large flooring factory, which employs over 1000 people. Additionally, Metroflor is fortunate to have Simon Xia, its general manager for China and liaison to Elegant Home-Tech, who assisted the team in overcoming the language barrier and setting the documentation process of existing policies in motion. Xia worked with Francis Janes, ILFI’s JUST Manager, who walked him through the JUST parameters. This enabled Xia to evaluate and document transparency and social equity practices enabling the company to achieve the coveted label. 

Said Janes, “The JUST Label is reflective of Metroflor's longstanding commitment to sustainable business practices. The Institute is also very pleased to note that this is the first instance of a JUST labelled facility in China.”

“Earning the first JUST label for a Chinese company demonstrates our system-wide transparency, which we hope will inspire the future direction of manufacturing in China,” Corey Carter, Metroflor’s Director of Sustainability, noted.  

The announcement of the first JUST label for a Chinese company will coincide with the “Positively Made in China” panel during the upcoming Living Future unConference in Portland May 2 – 4, of which Aspecta is a sponsor. The presentation will take the audience on an inside journey to green manufacturing in China. Routman and Xia will be joined by James Connelly, Vice President, Products + Strategic Growth, ILFI, and Ryan Dick, Founder and Chief Operating Officer of GIGA, to explore the symbiotic relationship between US and China manufacturing and the vast opportunity that exists there for performance-driven sustainability.

For more information, visit:
http://justorganizations.com/just-profile/aspecta

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Green Mountain Energy Customers Avoid 8.6 Billion Pounds of CO2 in 2017

Thu, 04/26/2018 - 4:57pm

Every month is Earth Month for the customers of Green Mountain Energy Company. By choosing cleaner electricity and carbon offset products, Green Mountain’s customers avoided more than 8.6 billion pounds of CO2 in 2017.

Since its inception in 1997, Green Mountain customers have collectively avoided a total of 63 billion pounds of CO2. That’s like taking 6.8 million cars off the road for a year, or planting 7.5 million trees.

“For more than twenty years, Green Mountain has been dedicated to changing the way power is made,” said Mark Parsons, General Manager, Green Mountain Energy. “By providing a variety of renewable energy options, our customers are able to support clean energy year-round, easily reducing their carbon emissions and environmental footprints.”

Doubling down on its mission, all of Green Mountain’s commercial offerings will be 100% renewable moving forward, making it the first electricity supplier for commercial businesses to take this step.

Going 100% renewable can significantly decrease a business’s carbon footprint. With their commercial offers, Green Mountain’s green experts partner with commercial customers to help find the right solution tailored to meet their economic and sustainability goals, improving the planet and customers’ bottom lines.

Both of these announcements bolster the company’s pillars, which Green Mountain has rolled out amongst its Earth Month announcements. The four pillars – responsible, ethical, accessible, and pioneering – reinforce the organization’s vision to create a shift towards renewable energy sources by inspiring people to take action for the planet.

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Green Mountain Energy Company
Green Mountain Energy Company is the nation’s longest serving renewable energy retailer and believes in using wind, sun and water for good. The company was founded in 1997 with a simple mission: to change the way power is made. Green Mountain offers consumers and businesses the choice of cleaner electricity products from renewable sources, as well as a variety of carbon offset products and sustainable solutions for businesses. Green Mountain customers have collectively helped avoid more than 63 billion pounds of carbon dioxide emissions. To learn more about Green Mountain, visit greenmountainenergy.com.


Media Contact:
Alex Angelina, Green Mountain Energy
alex.angelina@greenmountain.com

Volcom Achieves Fair Labor Association Accreditation

Thu, 04/26/2018 - 1:57pm

In February of 2018, after years of being an ‘affiliate’ brand, Volcom was officially voted in by the Fair Labor Association (FLA) as an accredited ‘member;’ an achievement Volcom has had its sights set on since 2014. It’s a badge that sets the brand apart and recognizes the commitment and diligence that has been put into their social compliance program over the last twelve years.

Companies like Volcom that join the FLA commit to ten Principles of Fair Labor and Responsible Sourcing (and/or Production) and agree to uphold the FLA Workplace Code of Conduct in their supply chain. The Code of Conduct is based on International Labor Organization (ILO) standards and seeks to protect the workers who manufacture a company’s goods. Brands can sign on as affiliates, but it takes years of implementation to bring their supply chains into compliance with the FLA’s expectations to become and accredited member.

The standards aim to achieve decent and humane working conditions in global supply chains and address important subjects like nondiscrimination, forced labor, child labor, compensation, hours of work, and more.

In 2014, as a first step, Volcom became an FLA ‘affiliate’ noting that “The FLA provided Workplace Code of Conduct and Compliance Benchmarks that helped Volcom achieve the goal of making sure workers were not only receiving wages for basic needs and training for promotions to improve their lives, but also to be treated with dignity and respect.”

During its implementation period, the P.A.S.S. team at Volcom (Product And Social Safety) worked with FLA to adopt and communicate workplace standards, train staff to assess and remediate noncompliance issues, conduct internal assessments of facilities, provide workers with confidential reporting channels and more.

After a trip to Washington, DC in February for the FLA vote, it was confirmed that Volcom’s efforts had been rewarded.

“We’re honored and proud, said Big Tony Alvarez, Volcom’s VP of Global Supply Chain and the head of its compliance program. “It’s been a learning process and a challenge, but a continuously positive one. It’s been a real partnership between our suppliers, the FLA, and our teams internally. We’re so stoked for this achievement and it’s a win for all involved.”

Volcom’s compliance program, referred to now as P.A.S.S., began in 2006 with the implementation of their first Code of Conduct and has steadily developed and matured ever since. Volcom’s P.A.S.S. team is built on the FLA’s shared belief that “The products we buy should not come at the cost of workers’ rights.” Their membership recognition reinforces that belief.

Volcom’s accreditation will be up for renewal every three years following a satisfactory FLA evaluation of labor compliance systems and activities during the timeframe. Big Tony Alvarez, Volcom’s VP of Global Supply Chain and head of its compliance program on the ground in India working with our organic cotton farmers.

ABOUT VOLCOM:

Inspired by creative spirit, Volcom was founded in 1991 and creates products for the persistent who are true to their passions. We were born to chase what we are true to. It’s not that we want to… WE HAVE TO. We have a vision that turns obstacles into opportunity, a creative courage to tempt the impossible…And embrace the strange. Telling us to push further…To try again. Endlessly seeking elevation, we are all connected by this same internal force. Forever we chase that intoxicating moment when our vision is realized… The world around us goes quiet…And for brief moments, we are more than alive. Volcom, True To This.

For more information, please visit http://www.volcom.com. Volcom is part of the Kering Group, a world leader in apparel and accessories with an ensemble of powerful Luxury, Sport & Lifestyle brands. http://www.kering.com

You can also find this here-http://www.volcom.com/company/

ABOUT FAIR LABOR ASSOCIATION:

FLA is a collaborative effort of universities, civil society organizations and socially responsible companies dedicated to protecting workers’ rights around the world. They are an international organization with a dedicated staff and board, headquartered in Washington, DC, with offices in China, and Switzerland.

FLA places the onus on companies to voluntarily meet internationally recognized labor standards wherever their products are made. Learn more at http://www.fairlabor.org/

SC Johnson United Kingdom Named Best Workplace for 8th Time

Thu, 04/26/2018 - 1:57pm

SC Johnson United Kingdom has been recognized as a 2018 Best Workplace by the Great Place to Work® Institute. The organization ranked No. 52 on the list of companies. Since 2006, SC Johnson United Kingdom has been recognized as a Best Workplace eight times.

“We’re proud of the SC Johnson United Kingdom team for being named a great place to work for the eighth time,” said Fisk Johnson, Chairman and CEO of SC Johnson. “The ranking reflects the team’s commitment to putting people first and fostering a strong sense of community.”

SC Johnson United Kingdom’s success is attributed to a high-performing team of people who demonstrate trust, teamwork and a feeling of community in the workplace. The Best Workplaces list is the world’s largest annual study of workplace excellence. The ranking is determined by the results of an employee opinion survey and information provided about company culture, programs and policies.

The United Kingdom team joins SC Johnson Italy, Venezuela, Germany, Greece and Mexico on the 2018 list of Best Workplaces.

In the United States, SC Johnson has been included 29 times in Working Mother magazine’s list of the “100 Best Companies for Working Mothers” for its programs and benefits that support working parents including paid family leave, schedule flexibility and advancement of women.

Also in 2017, the company received a perfect score of 100 percent on the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index. This HRC honor marked the 13th time the company earned a perfect score and its 16th year of recognition on the workplace equality list.

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Contact:

SC Johnson Global Public Affairs

USPublicAffairs@scj.com

262-260-2440

About SC Johnson
SC Johnson is a family company dedicated to innovative, high-quality products, excellence in the workplace and a long-term commitment to the environment and the communities in which it operates. Based in the USA, the company is one of the world's leading manufacturers of household cleaning products and products for home storage, air care, pest control and shoe care, as well as professional products. It markets such well-known brands as GLADE®, KIWI®, OFF!®, PLEDGE®, RAID®, SCRUBBING BUBBLES®, SHOUT®, WINDEX® and ZIPLOC® in the U.S. and beyond, with brands marketed outside the U.S. including AUTAN®, TANA®, BAMA®, BAYGON®, BRISE®, KABIKILLER®, KLEAR®, MR MUSCLE® and RIDSECT®. The 132-year-old company, which generates $10 billion in sales, employs approximately 13,000 people globally and sells products in virtually every country around the world. www.scjohnson.com

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