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Restoring Critical Monarch Butterfly Habitat in Mexico

Tue, 06/30/2020 - 1:02pm

Each year, millions of Monarch butterflies migrate to Estado de México, Mexico to spend the winter among the Oyamel trees, fir trees that protect the butterflies from seasonal rain and cold. However, areas of the “Zona Nucleo,” the breeding ground for the Monarch, require restoration due to illegal logging and wildfires. By teaming up with L’Oréal to support a new partnership between the Arbor Day Foundation the Land Life Company, we can make a difference in this critical ecosystem.

At International Paper, our entire business depends on the sustainability of forests, and we recognize that sustainable forestry doesn’t just happen in the working forests from which we source our fiber*. Through strategic collaborations and our Vision 2030 goal of Healthy and Abundant Forests, we are working to conserve the biodiversity and health of all forestland, including those that are not used to make renewable, fiber-based products.

That is why we support the Arbor Day Foundation and their mission to inspire people to plant, nurture and celebrate trees. With Arbor Day’s new initiative to restore Monarch butterfly habitat, we are expanding our reach together.

Today, the Arbor Day Foundation announced a new partnership to support reforestation efforts for these critical Monarch butterfly habitats in Estado de México, Mexico.

Through the project, Land Life Company is working alongside CONAFOR (Mexican Ministry of Forestry), CONANP (Ministry of Protected Natural Areas) and the World Wildlife Fund to restore degraded forestland, protecting the Monarch’s habitat for generations to come. This initiative also engages local communities that rely on the forest for their livelihoods, water, and food. These communities play a critical role in patrolling Monarch nesting grounds to prevent illegal logging.

“We are committed to building a better future for people and the planet,” said Dr. Alissa Campbell Shaw, senior manager, Community Engagement, and executive director, IP Foundation. “By joining forces with the Arbor Day Foundation and L’Oréal, we can make meaningful contributions to both. We are so excited to improve this critical habitat while engaging the local community that depends on this forest.”

Since 2018, International Paper has supported the Arbor Day Foundation’s Community Tree Recovery program and the Time for Trees initiative and have helped plant thousands of trees across the country. These trees are restoring forest canopy after a natural disaster, providing critical wildlife habitat, and improving watershed health.

Our collaboration with the Arbor Day Foundation is just one way we will make progress on our Vision 2030 targets to conserve and restore one million acres of ecologically significant forestland and to improve the lives of 100 million people by 2030.

Learn more about our other strategic collaborations to manage, conserve and restore forestland at Our Renewable Future.

* At International Paper, the fiber used to make our products comes from responsibly managed sources. We will not knowingly accept fiber from illegally logged forests or from forests where high conservation values are threatened by management activities. Learn more.

How Investors Can Help Make the 2020s a Decade of Climate Action

Tue, 06/30/2020 - 10:02am

The world must halve carbon emissions by 2030 to stay below 1.5°C of global warming and avoid catastrophic climate change. That requires transitioning to a low-carbon economy as nearly three-fourths of global carbon emissions arise from use of fossil fuels. The COVID-19 pandemic has added to the challenge of meeting these formidable goals but is also a historic opportunity to build back better. 

“The world must enable a green recovery and ramp up the fight against climate change,” says Rasmus Skov, Head of Sustainability at renewable energy company Ørsted. “For us as companies, making carbon reductions central to business strategy is not only good for the health of our planet - it’s key to staying competitive as a business. Investors must help achieve these aims.” 

In practice, investors will need to encourage companies to shrink their carbon footprint, such as reducing direct emissions from energy use, improving energy efficiency, and greening their supply chains. Companies that deliver sustainable and scalable solutions to consumers are in scope, as are companies beginning to transform towards a more sustainable business model.

How do I align my investment portfolio with the 1.5°C scenario?

Begin by gaining a better understanding of your portfolio’s climate impact and exposure to fossil fuels. For a first estimate, upload your portfolios to the Paris Agreement Capital Transition Assessment (PACTA) tool developed by the 2° Investing Initiative. The tool is free and can be used as a starting point for aligning your portfolio with the 1.5°C scenario. You can then: 

  • Commit to a Net Zero target and report on your progress
    Commit to transitioning your investment portfolios to net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, in line with the Paris Agreement. You can do that by joining the UN-convened Net-Zero Asset Owner Alliance, which represents more than USD 4.6 trillion in assets. The Alliance builds on the work of the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), which will launch a framework in 2020 to help financial institutions align their lending and investment portfolios with the Paris Agreement. Also, establish a roadmap for decarbonising your portfolio and report on your progress using the Task Force on Climate-Related Disclosure (TCFD) framework.

  • Drive change in your portfolio companies
    Require that all companies in your portfolio report on their carbon emissions, which is a necessary first step in taking action to reduce emissions. Encourage them to set ambitious emissions reduction targets under the SBTi, define a credible pathway with short- to medium- term actions for achieving these targets, and transparently disclose on progress.

Are you a first mover?
Investors may find it a daunting and complex task to decarbonise their portfolios and wonder if it is worth the effort. “There are benefits to increasing low-carbon investment,” says Marco Kisic, Senior ESG Analyst, Research Insights at Nordea bank. “First movers who invest to support the transition of carbon-intensive sectors could be rewarded with above-market returns, while those who don’t might see their portfolios exposed to significant risk of stranded assets.”

He explains that obviously green companies with a “strong green narrative”, such as energy efficiency, forestry and renewables, have had an annualized return of 21% relative to the market in 2017-2020 (see graph above). Companies that further enable the transition to a low-carbon economy, such as manufacturers of electricity transmission cables, are also expected to benefit because policy frameworks such as the EU taxonomy incentivise investments into companies with a high share of environmentally-sustainable economic activities. “This second group of companies are currently undervalued but are likely to offer the next wave of climate-opportunity outperformance,” Kisic says.

Green transformation
For its part, Ørsted demonstrates it is possible to increase profitability by making decarbonisation the keystone of business strategy. The company has transformed from a fossil-fuel based energy company to one of the world’s largest renewable energy companies, and the most sustainable company in the Global 100 index.

“Tackling the climate emergency is not only about technological solutions and financial viability, but also the will to act now. If companies and investors join forces to reduce emissions at unprecedented pace and scale, they can help make the 2020s a decade of green action to stop global warming at 1.5°C. It’s never been more urgent to invest in climate action,” says Rasmus Skov. 

About Ørsted
The Ørsted vision is a world that runs entirely on green energy. The company develops, constructs and operates offshore and onshore wind farms, solar farms, energy storage facilities, and bioenergy plants, and provides energy products to its customers. The Group's revenue was EUR 9.1 billion in 2019. Ørsted will be carbon neutral by 2025 and targets net-zero emissions across the entire carbon footprint by 2040. The company generated 86% of its energy from renewable sources, and had reduced carbon emissions by 86%, in 2019. Ørsted ranks #1 in Corporate Knights' 2020 Global 100 index of most sustainable corporations and is recognised on CDP’s Climate change A List  as a global leader in climate action.

Cargill Highlights Progress Protecting South American Forests

Tue, 06/30/2020 - 10:02am

As part of its commitment to sustainably nourish the world, Cargill reports continued progress toward building a deforestation-free soy supply chain. The company outlined key achievements, including mapping of its Brazilian soy supply chain, in its mid-year progress report, released today.

South America, a major supplier of soy on the world stage, figures prominently in the company’s soy sustainability work, as it is also home to vital landscapes such as the Amazon, Cerrado and Gran Chaco biomes. Each biome, although vastly different in terms of their natural characteristics and the local communities that depend on them, is equally important and is getting the attention it needs to continue to thrive. 

“We haven’t wavered in our commitment to protecting forests and native vegetation, and we believe this can be done in ways that are economically viable for farmers and local communities,” said John Hartmann, global sustainability lead for Cargill’s agricultural supply chain. “By working with farmers, customers, governments and others in the industry, we have made meaningful progress on our soy action plan and will continue efforts to make the soy supply chain more sustainable.” 

Progress over the past six months

Efforts to foster transparency and improve traceability figure large in the report, as the company works to find ways for both forests and farming to thrive. Critical milestones include:

  • Cargill mapped 100% of its Brazilian supply chain with georeferenced single points – completing the project six months of schedule. Georeferenced single points allow the company to identify the locations of its direct and indirect suppliers, a critical step toward effectively protecting forests and native vegetation.

  • For the first time, Cargill calculated the estimated share of its soy in Brazil grown on land that is deforestation- and conversion-free, 95.68%, by analyzing data from external sources about both crop growth and changes in land use, using 2008 (Forest Code) as a reference point.

  • Cargill expanded its direct engagement with farmers in Brazil, including the launch of a new partnership with the largest farmer association in the state of Bahia.

  • The company continued to grow its Sustainably Sourced and Supplied certification program in Brazil and Paraguay, providing a large market for soybeans grown through verified sustainable methods. Farmers who commit to this program pledge to produce their crops by using the best agricultural practices, protecting worker welfare, and managing greenhouse gas emissions under a continuous improvement process.

The report also outlines Cargill’s new transformational partnerships with farmers and advancements on its $30-million fund to find innovative solutions to protect forests in ways that are economically viable for farmers in South America. In addition, the company shares updates on its Land Use and Forest Sustainability Advisory Panel.

Looking Ahead

In the next six months, Cargill will continue to deliver on its commitments made in its Soy Action Plan:

  • Transforming its supply chain to be deforestation-free while protecting native vegetation beyond forests,

  • Promoting responsible production, which benefits farmers and surrounding communities,

  • Respecting and upholding the rights of workers, indigenous peoples and communities, and

  • Upholding the high standards of transparency through reporting of key metrics, progress and grievances.

Visit www.cargill.com/sustainability/supply-chains to learn more about Cargill’s efforts to drive sustainability across its operations.


About Cargill

Cargill’s 160,000 employees across 70 countries work relentlessly to achieve our purpose of nourishing the world in a safe, responsible and sustainable way. Every day, we connect farmers with markets, customers with ingredients, and people and animals with the food they need to thrive. We combine 154 years of experience with new technologies and insights to serve as a trusted partner for food, agriculture, financial and industrial customers in more than 125 countries. Side-by-side, we are building a stronger, sustainable future for agriculture.

Olam to Speed Innovation to Address Global Food Security

Tue, 06/30/2020 - 10:02am

Olam International, in partnership with Agropolis Fondation, is on the hunt for ground-breaking scientific research that can deliver transformational impacts within global agriculture and win a USD$75,000 grant to support development and implementation.

Unlike other research awards, the Olam Prize for Innovation in Food Security requires clear evidence of potential short-term impact on food availability, affordability, adequacy, and accessibility. The fourth edition of the biennial Prize follows the recent warning from the UN World Food Programme that the COVID-19 pandemic will double the number of people suffering acute hunger by the end of 2020i, bringing food security firmly into the world’s spotlight.

Sunny Verghese, Co-Founder and Group CEO at Olam said: “At a time when the world faces a potential rise in food insecurity from the coronavirus crisis, with vulnerable parts of the developing world, particularly in Africa, most at risk, the new scientific insights and techniques being developed by research teams around the world are more significant than ever. The Olam Prize aims to support breakthrough innovations so that together we can re-imagine agriculture for greater food security.”

The winner of the previous Prize was a pioneering mapping approach that is reimagining subsistence farming in Ethiopia, co-ordinated by Dr Tomaso Ceccarelli of Wageningen Environmental Research and Dr Elias Eyasu Fantahun of Addis Ababa University. Innovation Mapping for Food Security (IM4FS)ii, is supporting Ethiopia’s REALISE programme to give smallholder farmers a ‘best fit’ for what to grow, where and how, with the goal of improving productivity in food insecure areas.

Commenting on what the funding has meant to the implementation of their research, Dr Ceccarelli said: “The funding from the Olam Prize has allowed us to start scaling up our approach and shift our focus from areas of high potential agriculture, to the food insecure and drought prone regions of Ethiopia. Specifically, the funding is being applied to 4 key areas: engaging local and regional planners, in-situ data collection on bio-physical and socio-economic conditions, developing the GIS-based tool behind IM4FS, and application of site-specific crop recommendations based on the research fed into and information generated by the tool.

“With the unexpected outbreak of COVID-19, we’re also reviewing with our partners how IM4FS can support more immediate and urgent food security needs for farmers amid the pandemic. This would include planning efficient seed, fertiliser and other input distribution to farmers based on needs assessments.”

Meanwhile, since receipt of the 2017 Prize funding, the heat-tolerant wheat varieties developed by Dr. Filippo Bassi of ICARDA, are now well-established in Senegal and Mauritania and have been successfully cultivated for the first time by farmers in Benin, Togo, Ivory Coast, Ghana, and the Republic of the Gambia.

“Despite extreme weather events Africa, and the disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic in Africa, I am happy to say that the activities enabled by the Olam Prize are advancing at full steam. Olam’s mill is Dakar is leading a partnership with other local millers to provide an ideal market for farmers to sell their new grain and with the expansion of heat tolerant wheat now included as a strategic approach in the Adaptation of African Agriculture (a joint initiative by African Ministries of Agriculture), we can reach many more farmers.

“Indeed, the Olam Prize, and the communication campaign that followed, has truly helped promote the use of this technology and get farmers interested. Since the initial press release, ICARDA has been contacted almost weekly to provide seeds to different farmers and scientific organisations around the globe. The true power of the Olam Prize goes well beyond personal recognition to really helping people learn and deploy new progressive ideas for sustainable agriculture.”

Applications are welcomed from academic or research institutions, civil societies and the private sector, and can focus on any region, environment, crop or part of the agricultural supply chain.

Click here for more details and to apply. The deadline for application submissions is 23:59 CET (France) 11 January 2021. Applications received before 30 November 2020 will be considered for publicity opportunities on Olam’s corporate channels. 

The 2021 Prize will be judged by an independent jury of experts and awarded in conjunction with the Agropolis Louis Malassis International Scientific Prizes for Agriculture and Food and SHIFT Prize by Biovision Foundation.

Notes to editor

The Olam Prize for Innovation in Food Security is one of several of Olam’s initiatives focussed on delivering greater food security in the agricultural sector, as part of its mission to re-imagine global agriculture Read more

i United Nations World Food Programme - 2020 Global Report on Food Crises

ii IM4FS builds on the strength of the CASCAPE project, which has been carried out in close cooperation with the Agricultural Growth Programme (AGP) of the Ethiopian government.

About Olam International Limited

Olam International is a leading food and agri-business supplying food, ingredients, feed and fibre to 25,200 customers worldwide. Our value chain spans over 60 countries and includes farming, processing and distribution operations, as well as a sourcing network of an estimated 5 million farmers. 

Through our purpose to ‘Re-imagine Global Agriculture and Food Systems’, Olam aims to address the many challenges involved in meeting the needs of a growing global population, while achieving positive impact for farming communities, our planet and all our stakeholders. 

Headquartered and listed in Singapore, Olam currently ranks among the top 30 largest primary listed companies in terms of market capitalisation on SGX-ST. 

More information on Olam can be found at www.olamgroup.com.

Olam is located at 7 Straits View, Marina One East Tower #20-01, Singapore 018936. Telephone: +65 63394100, Facsimile: +65 63399755.  

About Agropolis Fondation

Agropolis Fondation is a foundation for scientific cooperation which aims to promote and support high-level research and higher education (training-through-research) as well as to broaden international research partnerships in agricultural sciences and sustainable development research. 

The scientific work supported by the Foundation covers all aspects of the plant - from its genes to its environments to its final uses - and concerns temperate, Mediterranean and tropical climates. In the past 10 years the foundation has granted €40 million to scientific projects on cultivated plant diversity, biology and breeding, crop protection, sustainable agriculture and food systems, agro-ecological transition, adaptation to climate change, food processing and quality, socio-economics and public policies.


Quantis Announces New CEO and Appointment of Strategic Positions

Tue, 06/30/2020 - 7:02am

Respected sustainability consulting group Quantis is excited to announce a number of changes to strategic positions that will usher in a new era for Quantis, its people, its partners and its potential for sustainable impact on a global scale. To reinforce Quantis’ mission of accelerating this transformation, Dimitri Caudrelier has been tapped as CEO of Quantis, taking the reins after 11 years with the group. Previously Director of Quantis France, Caudrelier succeeds Emmanuelle Aoustin in this role, effective immediately. 

“Quantis has been on an incredible journey, progressing alongside the integration of sustainability into and across businesses. I’m pleased that Dimitri has accepted to take Quantis to the next level. Most importantly, Dimitri is admired for his sincerity and compassion as a leader, one who exemplifies the mission of Quantis. He’s a visionary thinker with a sharp understanding of how businesses can tackle the biggest challenge of our time,” describes Manuele Margni, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Quantis, adding, “On behalf of all Quantis stakeholders, I want to thank Emmanuelle for her leadership, commitment, and accomplishments to the group during a significant phase of transformation in our history.” 

"It has been my honor to have led the great team at Quantis, who will always be an inspiration to me. I am incredibly proud of all that we have accomplished together with our clients to embed sustainability strategies and solutions into business practices. I am grateful to have had this experience together and I leave knowing that Quantis is set up to continue impacting even more positive change into its next chapter,” Emmanuelle Aoustin says. 

Quantis’ new CEO brings a dynamic to the group to match its ambition. Dimitri Caudrelier is as passionate about Quantis and sustainability as he is about sailing from the coast of his native Brittany. He joined Quantis Lausanne in 2009 and shortly thereafter led a sailing expedition to raise awareness for the environment around the globe. He authored the book “100 pionniers pour la planète” (100 Pioneers for the Planet), the fruit of this sailing expedition that took him to 21 countries over 21 months. Over the last decade with Quantis, Dimitri has proven himself as a sustainability analyst, consultant, and then most recently as Director of Quantis Paris for the last 6 years. 

“I’m honored to now lead our entire team and our mission at Quantis. We have achieved great transformation over the past years with Emmanuelle and I look forward to bringing a fresh new dynamic and vision to our people and the work we do,” explains Dimitri Caudrelier, the newly appointed CEO of Quantis. 

“It’s not the moment to slow down on sustainability. 2020 is not canceled; it can still be the year that opens up the decade of change. Together, we must design a new world, one where businesses operate within our planet’s boundaries while elevating our social fabric,” Caudrelier highlights. 

Already in 2020, Quantis has been readying its organization to drive the change that’s necessary to build a sustainable future by hiring great people across Consulting, Talent, Administration & Finance, Communication & Engagement Services, Marketing, Digital Solutions and more. To make even more progress, other key roles have been filled or shifted amongst the teams:  

To lead our Paris-based team, Anne Désérable has accepted to take on the role of Director, Quantis France, replacing Caudrelier. Sarah Beaubien transitions from Head of Western US to Director, Quantis US, replacing Bryan Sheehan, who is leaving Quantis to pursue other opportunities in sustainability. Quantis US will also welcome five new colleagues to reinforce its West Coast presence in July. For the Berlin-based team, Ivo Mersiowsky joins the group as Director, Quantis Germany.

I am very proud of the progress the Quantis US team has made in the past 3 years, including remarkable business and team growth to help our clients take even bolder sustainability commitments and actions. It has been my great honor to have had the chance to lead this wonderful and amazingly talented team,” remarked Bryan Sheehan. “I know that Sarah and the team are well-positioned to take this success and our client collaborators even further in the coming years.”

To reinforce Quantis’ leadership and focus, some newly created roles are filled by senior consultants within the group. Annabelle Stamm as Director, Client Services and Charlotte Bande as Global Head of Climate Strategy. Gregory Simonnin will lead Quantis’ Corporate Footprint Services

Learn more about the current openings on the Quantis Join us! page. And follow Quantis on LinkedIn to be the first to know about upcoming roles in Quantis’ service areas and sectors, such as food, cosmetics, fashion and more!


About Quantis 

Quantis guides top organizations to define, shape and implement intelligent environmental sustainability solutions. In a nutshell, our creative geeks take the latest science and make it actionable. Our team of talents delivers resilient strategies, robust metrics, useful tools, and credible communications for a more sustainable future. 

A sustainability consulting group known for our metrics-based approach to sustainability, Quantis has offices in the US, France, Switzerland, Germany and Italy and has a diverse client portfolio including Barry Callebaut, BASF, Bel Group, Danone, Del Monte Foods, the European Commission, GE, General Mills, IKEA, Intel, The Kellogg Company, Kering, the Kraft Heinz Company, L’Oréal, LVMH, Mars, Mondelēz International, Nestlé, Olam, PepsiCo, Pirelli, Starbucks, Unilever, Veolia and more. 

We are Quantis: sustainability’s scientists, experts, strategists, innovators and visionaries.

(re)discover Quantis at www.quantis-intl.com 

Continuing to #DoGood through “Operation Double Helpings”

Mon, 06/29/2020 - 4:01pm

At NRG, we are driven to be active members of our communities. Many of us, both individually and collectively, give our support, our time, and our resources to nonprofit organizations dedicated to helping vulnerable members of our community. This need to help has only been heightened as we begin to understand the breadth of COVID-19.

As we realized the impact this public health crisis was having locally, members of the Commercial Operations team felt a growing need to contribute. We knew that so many in our own community — just a few miles from our headquarters in Princeton, NJ — were struggling, whether directly from the illness or from the resulting economic fallout.

While we wanted to help, we also knew the pandemic had put up barriers. Many organizations were not doing the same work or were limiting outside assistance due to COVID-19. With these thoughts top of mind, we asked; “Who needs help? Who can we reach out to? How can we make a real difference?”

One answer was HomeFront, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to end homelessness in Central New Jersey by harnessing the caring, resources, and expertise of the community. HomeFront has many initiatives, including over 30 programs dedicated to alleviating the immediate pains of homelessness, helping individuals and families to become self-sufficient, and empowering the homeless to advocate for themselves.

In response to COVID-19, the nonprofit — like many others — saw a tremendous increase in the level of need and had to reimagine ways to serve those who were relying on their help and aid. The solution HomeFront devised was a new program called “Operation Double Helpings,” centered on two communities vulnerable to the economic effects of COVID-19 — people who are homeless/home insecure, and employees of small local restaurants.

My first phone call with Connie Mercer, Homefront’s founder and CEO, was illuminating. Upon learning how the organization was working to feed and support displaced families in five local motels — given that their own facilities were closed due to COVID-19 restrictions — we knew we needed to get involved.

Along with my wife, my team and I committed to funding 120 meals each week. This included the coordination and ordering of these meals, and delivering them with the hope that we would positively impact those in need and give the initiative a chance to grow. 

Our partnership with HomeFront and our efforts to help “Operation Double Helpings” have been successful. Since its start a little over a month ago, the program has grown to include the delivery of over 280 meals per week, plus groceries, and has been critical in supporting and feeding those in need. Community members have stacked hands and worked hard to expand the program’s reach on several fronts, including:

Being a part of this initiative has been a truly impactful experience for those of us lending a helping hand. In our effort to make a significant impact in others’ lives at this critical time, our community has found a way to face this current situation head-on and, in doing so, has achieved an unexpected result. We have found a way, with the help and expertise of HomeFront, to remain connected to each other, to remain compassionate, and to give even in the face of adversity. 

However, “Operation Double Helpings” still has room to grow and a need for more people to help. I invite you to join an initiative that is working together to support our neighbors. Whether you wish to donate or learn more about volunteering, visit HomeFront’s website and learn how you can contribute.

I look forward to seeing you as my team and I continue to lend a helping hand.


Mark Herrmann

VP, Fundamentals & Structuring

A Sustainable Future Is an Inclusive Future

Mon, 06/29/2020 - 4:01pm

No one left behind.

This is the powerful, transformative promise of the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals. It acknowledges a sustainable future is only truly sustainable if it includes all people, no matter their race, geography, gender, religion or income level.

Last week, we released our 2019 Sustainability Report and announced new sustainability targets aimed at ending plastic waste and achieving carbon neutrality by 2050. As our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jim Fitterling wrote in a blog post, Dow is seeking to take a holistic approach to sustainability and looking at global challenges such as climate change, plastic waste and inequality as interconnected issues, not isolated problems. By understanding how one global challenge impacts the other, we are striving to take a collaborative, systematic approach to tackling these issues.

Empowering waste pickers

Take our approach to stopping the flow of plastic waste and transforming to a circular economy. We understand that we can’t ignore the economy part of the circular economy, and we can’t address circularity without addressing inequality. So, where many see waste, we see opportunity. Opportunity to create jobs, stimulate innovation, boost the resilience and vibrancy of local economies, and contribute to economic growth.

One way that we are putting people and opportunity at the heart of the circular economy is by partnering to support waste pickers. Waste pickers account for 15-20% of waste collection globally and make a living by selling both recyclable and reusable materials that have been thrown away. These “wastepreneurs” contribute to public health and safety, reduce pollution, and help their local economies. Yet often they face poor living and working conditions, discrimination and low social status.

In our sustainability report, we detail how we are helping support waste cooperatives, in which sales are equally divided among waste pickers:

  • In Brazil, we have partnered with Boomera and the nonprofit Fundación Avina to create Recycling for a Change, a program that seeks to strengthen the business model of waste cooperatives in the state of São Paulo through improved training, equipment, administration and professional development. In its first year, the five participating waste cooperatives averaged a productivity increase of 38% and a revenue increase of 35%. In some cooperatives, results were even higher, achieving up to 68% increase in per capita revenue and 66% decrease in loss of materials.

  • Through our social initiative Project Butterfly in Africa, we’ve teamed up with the nonprofits to empower local recyclers and waste pickers to generate more income. In South Africa, we funded the expansion of the nonprofit WILDTRUST’s Recycling Villages, which includes collection points in schools, shopping centers and other public areas – enabling the potential collection of more than 1,200,000 kilograms (or 2.6 million pounds) of recyclable waste each year from approximately 10,000 local homes. This project runs hand in hand with Recycling for Life which enables communities and individuals (waste pickers) to improve their living environment by collecting waste in and around their environment and recycling and trading it with WILDTRUST in exchange for cash. To date, hundreds of waste pickers have participated in the initiative, generating reliable income through the collection and exchange of recyclable waste. More than 75% of these waste pickers are women, helping people like Duduzile Magubane, a single mother, earn a living wage and provide for her children.

We also recently announced the Waste Collector COVID-19 Support Fund through GlobalGiving, a nonprofit crowdfunding platform, to help protect these vulnerable workers during the pandemic.

Rethinking business as usual

There’s room for everybody in a sustainable, environmentally beneficial economy, but it will take a shift in thinking by businesses to help achieve it. By applying holistic thinking to our sustainability efforts, we can help redefine the notion of growth, so it puts the well-being of people and the planet at the center – providing greater economic opportunity, better natural resource management and improved outcomes for all.

Mary Draves
Chief Sustainability Officer and Vice President of Environment, Health and Safety

Providing PPE to Community Organizations in Memphis

Mon, 06/29/2020 - 1:01pm

Shelby County Government Division of Community Services, Momentum Nonprofit Partners and International Paper have joined forces to provide personal protective equipment (PPE) to Memphis area organizations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

To expand access of services to the community, the Division of Community Services has partnered with Momentum to assist with the coordination and distribution for PPE supplies. Equipped with boxes donated by International Paper, this partnership allows both organizations to work together to provide masks, hand sanitizers, and other cleaning supplies to over 100 local non-profit organizations. These supplies will aid in these social service agencies’ efforts in protecting their staff and clients during the COVID-19 pandemic as more and more clients are seen.

“Our employees are passionate about supporting critical community needs, and we recognize that our boxes are essential during the pandemic,” said Dynisha Woods, global citizenship coordinator at International Paper. “We are pleased to mobilize our products to support this great community initiative.”

Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris said, “The use of personal protective equipment is crucial for workers that perform direct services and routinely have prolonged visits with others. For this reason, we have put a great deal of thought and preparation into expanding our capacity for PPE distribution in the community. Thanks to Momentum and other local agencies, we have created partnerships that allow us to exceed our goals on getting PPE to local organizations so that they can continue to keep their employees and customers safe during this pandemic.”

About Momentum Nonprofit Partners:

Momentum Nonprofit Partners has a 27-year track record of serving the nonprofit and philanthropic community. Momentum serves as the information clearinghouse for the nonprofit sector in the region, providing training, technical assistance, and policy support for nearly 450 local nonprofit organizations and their staff.

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 and Russia. We produce corrugated packaging products that protect and promote goods and enable world-wide 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., employ more than 50,000 colleagues and serve more than 25,000 customers in 150 countries. Net sales for 2019 were $22 billion. For more information about International Paper, our products and global citizenship efforts, please visit internationalpaper.com.

Innovative Ways We're Addressing the Root Causes of Child Labor

Mon, 06/29/2020 - 1:01pm

Sourcing 100 percent certified and sustainable cocoa from West Africa is part of our work to make sure there’s goodness in Hershey chocolate. As a native Ghanaian who returned to my homeland after attending Harvard University because I wanted to use my education to make a difference, I am proud of our high sustainability standards, from the way our cocoa beans are grown and harvested to the conditions in farming communities, and the fact that we go well beyond certification standards, such as Fairtrade USA and Rainforest Alliance – especially when it comes to combating child labor.

I have seen firsthand that many interrelated issues — children’s malnourishment, women’s inequality, poverty, lack of infrastructure — contribute to the prevalence of child labor in rural farming communities in West African countries like Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire (where Hershey sources much of its cocoa).

I have a personal passion for addressing these issues that are not only key to eliminating child labor from the global cocoa supply chain, but also important in supporting sustainable livelihoods for the farmers, families, and communities growing the cocoa that goes into our beloved products.

Within the pillars of our $500 million Cocoa For Good initiative, we’re especially proud of how the following efforts target the core issues at the root of the child labor problem.

Prevention & Education: Feeding more than 57,000 Ghanaian schoolchildren every day with ViVi

Kids who are suffering from food insecurity at home are more vulnerable to child labor. Our partnership with Project Peanut Butter is making ViVi – a highly fortified, peanut-based nutritional supplement – available to 177 schools in the Ghana School Feeding Program.

The access to better nutrition ViVi provides is helping increase school enrollment (by as much as 12 percent) and attendance rates (by as much as 36 percent). Keeping kids nourished, in school, and away from dangerous farming conditions enhances the quality of their education just as much as their wellbeing.

Since 2018, our partner Project Peanut Butter has been sourcing 100 percent of the peanuts for ViVi from Ghana, working exclusively with local manufacturers. This all-local approach, which we’re taking as we expand manufacturing and distribution to Côte d'Ivoire, ensures that our efforts with ViVi improve job opportunities and lives for West African adults while also helping children.

Empowerment & Opportunity: Boosting community incomes to support better lives for families

I have also been focused on creating additional areas of economic opportunity in cocoa-growing communities as this is essential to minimizing instances of child labor. Families that earn more income from activities outside of farming can better afford adult labor and other resources.

Helping women contribute to family incomes is especially important. Through our work in West Africa, we know that when women have an income, they invest it into the education, well-being, and health of their children and other family members.

That’s why we invest in providing job training and support for alternative means of generating income in Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire — think soap making, snail rearing, spice and vegetable farming, and cassava processing. Women engaging in these programs have reported income increases of as much as 51 percent.

The programs, which are also available to men, complement the many ways we help farming families earn more out of their cocoa growing efforts. By providing business and skills training and assistance with farm redevelopment or technical resourcing, we can support the higher income generation that can reduce the need for child labor.

Engagement & Remediation: Taking detection and resolution of child labor seriously

Another area where I focus my efforts is on building relationships with farmer families because this is key to overcoming child labor problems. If certifying organizations or their auditors lack a holistic understanding of families’ circumstances, they may fail to spot cases or even intervene in ways that make little difference to children’s lives.

We use a highly coordinated Child Labor Monitoring and Remediation Systems (CLMRS) to ensure our teams and partners on the ground know the families that produce our cocoa.

Facilitators visit every farm, profile their situations through interviews and surveys, and continue to maintain data as part of a long-term approach to monitoring. Because of their deep understanding of the risks and circumstances in farmers’ homes, facilitators have greater ability to identify cases and craft appropriate interventions and responses.

Those responses vary but making sure children can participate in school by helping them enroll, obtain materials, or procure birth certificates to ensure their eligibility is a key focus area.

Supporting children, for good

As a company, we take pride in using innovative solutions to address age-old problems, and I am honored and take great pride in being able to represent Hershey on the ground in implementing these important efforts in my country and in West Africa.

Eliminating child labor, which can keep young people out of school and at work, sometimes in harsh or dangerous circumstances, is a huge priority for us, as well as our many innovative partners. Together, our collective efforts help keep children in rural farming villages safer and healthier – which helps us keep 100 percent goodness at the core of all of our products.

Alkermes Announces 3rd Annual ALKERMES PATHWAYS RESEARCH AWARDS℠ Program and 2019 Recipients

Mon, 06/29/2020 - 1:01pm

Alkermes plc (Nasdaq: ALKS) today announced that applications are now being accepted for the annual ALKERMES PATHWAYS RESEARCH AWARDSSM. The competitive grants program is designed to support the next generation of researchers working on the front lines to advance understanding and awareness of central nervous system (CNS) disorders. In its third year, the Pathways program will provide grants to junior investigators who have demonstrated their commitment to helping those living with substance use disorders (SUD), schizophrenia, or bipolar disorder. The application period is now open and will run through October 30, 2020.

“With millions of people impacted by central nervous system disorders1, the need for advancements in this field remains critical,” said Craig Hopkinson, M.D., Executive Vice President, Research & Development and Chief Medical Officer at Alkermes. “Alkermes underscores its commitment to addressing the complex challenges patients face by helping promising researchers explore innovative ideas that have the potential to improve treatment options, outcomes, and lives.”

The 2020 Pathways program will provide funding for up to ten research projects with grant amounts of up to $100,000 per project. Alkermes has reserved four awards for research focused on SUD and four awards for research focused on schizophrenia. Two awards have also been reserved for research focused on bipolar disorder, which is a new addition to the Pathways program this year.

In 2019, Alkermes awarded grants to eight recipients in recognition of their outstanding work and creative ideas to advance research and help support those living with CNS disorders. The recipients of the 2019 Pathways program grants include:

  • Caroline A. Arout, Ph.D., New York State Psychiatric Institute at Columbia University Irving Medical Center, for assessing effects of repeated high-cannabidiol cannabis administration on experimental pain and abuse liability in humans

  • Michael S Breen, Ph.D., Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, for research on functional and translational implications of A-to-I RNA editing in schizophrenia

  • Xi Chen, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School, McLean Hospital, for In vivo research observing brain lactate changes in first-episode schizophrenia using 3-T magnetic resonance spectroscopy

  • Gregory F. Corder, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, for research on prevention of neurodevelopmental disabilities associated with neonatal opioid withdrawal

  • Victor Philippe Mathis, Ph.D., Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, for research defining the role of cortical inputs to the habenula in the control of midbrain dopamine neurons and addiction-related behaviors

  • Amanda McCleery, Ph.D., University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, for research on the impact of aripiprazole medication adherence on learning and neuroplasticity in recent-onset schizophrenia: A comparison of long-acting injectable and oral formulations

  • Jose M Rubio, M.D., Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell, for assessing biomarkers of relapse in schizophrenia during antipsychotic maintenance: A proof-of-concept study

  • Cody A. Siciliano, Ph.D., Vanderbilt University, for research assessing neural mechanisms of cognitive dysfunction and alcohol abuse vulnerability

“Despite effective treatments for psychotic symptoms, functional outcomes for people with schizophrenia are often disappointing,” said grant recipient Amanda McCleery, Ph.D., UCLA Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior. “The Pathways grant not only provides me with an excellent opportunity for mentored training in clinical trial methods, but also will allow me to gain a more nuanced understanding of the developmental trajectory of schizophrenia.”

“The Pathways grant will serve as a launching pad for my long-term aspirations of researching novel pathways involved in the control of opioid-seeking behavior and potentially identifying druggable targets for the development of new addiction therapeutics,” said Victor Mathis, Ph.D., Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. “I am grateful for Alkermes’ commitment to developing the next generation of researchers and striving to improve the lives of those affected by SUDs and other CNS diseases.”

To qualify, junior investigators must be M.D.s, Ph.D.s, or equivalent, within five years of initial academic appointment or current post-doctoral fellows, and affiliated with a medical or research institution within the U.S. Applicants are evaluated by an independent review committee comprised of specialists in psychiatry, neurobiology, pharmacology and behavioral science from academic research centers.

For more information on the Pathways program, including 2020 program information, visit www.PathwaysResearchAwards.com.

About Alkermes plc
Alkermes plc is a fully integrated, global biopharmaceutical company developing innovative medicines in the fields of neuroscience and oncology. The company has a portfolio of proprietary commercial products focused on addiction and schizophrenia, and a pipeline of product candidates in development for schizophrenia, bipolar I disorder, neurodegenerative disorders and cancer. Headquartered in Dublin, Ireland, Alkermes plc has an R&D center in Waltham, Massachusetts; a research and manufacturing facility in Athlone, Ireland; and a manufacturing facility in Wilmington, Ohio. For more information, please visit Alkermes’ website at www.alkermes.com.

Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Certain statements set forth in this press release constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended, including, but not limited to, statements concerning the expected timing, operation and/or potential impact of the ALKERMES PATHWAYS RESEARCH AWARDSSM program, the funding provided by the program and the research supported by such funding. The company cautions that forward-looking statements are inherently uncertain. Although the company believes that such statements are based on reasonable assumptions within the bounds of its knowledge of its business and operations, the forward-looking statements are neither promises nor guarantees and they are necessarily subject to a high degree of uncertainty and risk. Actual performance and results may differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements due to various risks, assumptions and uncertainties. These risks, assumptions and uncertainties include, among others, changes in funding, timing or parameters of the ALKERMES PATHWAYS RESEARCH AWARDSSM program, the nature of any findings or results arising from the research supported by the program and those risks, assumptions and uncertainties described under the heading “Risk Factors” in the company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended Dec. 31, 2019 and in subsequent filings made by the company with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which are available on the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov. Existing and prospective investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. Except as required by law, the company disclaims any intention or responsibility for updating or revising any forward-looking statements contained in this press release.

ALKERMES PATHWAYS RESEARCH AWARDSSM is a service mark of Alkermes, Inc.

[1] Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2019). Key substance use and mental health indicators in the United States: Results from the 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (HHS Publication No. PEP19-5068, NSDUH Series H-54). Rockville, MD: Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Accessed on March 20, 2020 from https://www.samhsa.gov/data/.

Tetra Tech’s Brian Thorne Discusses Planning and Designing Military Infrastructure

Mon, 06/29/2020 - 10:01am

Defense Services

Brian Thorne, an expert in military planning, design, and construction oversight, has nearly 25 years of experience leading infrastructure projects. A retired Army Major with 22 years of service with the Army National Guard, Brian now provides exceptional leadership and project management skills to his Department of Defense (DoD) clients.

Brian Thorne is Tetra Tech’s go-to resource when working with the DoD. Over the past 10 years, Brian has led planning and design of military facilities and infrastructure to support foreign military sales (FMS) initiatives under extremely aggressive schedules. He partners with his clients to achieve consensus early on in the project to maximize available funding, minimize changes needed later, and meet FMS delivery schedules. Leveraging his military training, Brian brings result-oriented leadership, communication, and problem-solving skills to meet or exceed client expectations. During his tenure at Tetra Tech, Brian has managed planning and design task orders for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Middle East District totaling more than $75 million.

What are some of the common needs and challenges you see with your DoD clients?

Our clients need to have the right facilities and infrastructure to support their training, combat mission, or whatever it is that they are trying to accomplish. I think my military background helps me understand their needs faster and immediately build trust because I’ve also worn the uniform.

What are the key factors in helping your clients achieve their goals and objectives?

I am able to multitask and focus on what’s important because I am organized and regimented. My time in the military trained me to manage the unexpected and overcome challenges, skills that are equally important as a project manager in industry. I have honed these skills over time so that they have become an automatic part of my job. My responsibility, as a team leader, project manager, and task order manager is to ensure the end user is happy.

If our clients don’t succeed, then we don’t succeed. My staff and I use master action item lists and detailed project schedules to keep clients informed regarding the key issues. These lists and schedules also help us stay on track with our clients and focus on the issues at hand to get them resolved expeditiously. Generally, the third time you discuss a plan is when you get the real answer, or what the client is really thinking. In client meetings, we use visuals, site plans, or floor plans and refine them every day over a one- to two-week period. We show them what the plan or design could look like and confirm with the client that we correctly understand the client’s needs. Our team understands that the first idea may not be the final solution.

How do you help your clients achieve consensus among multiple stakeholders?

We give our clients the confidence that we know what we’re doing as professional engineers and architects and that we’re here to help them achieve their objectives. You have to provide solutions to their problems. When clients tell you they want something “bigger,” you have to explain what the implications are going to be—our role is to collect information and come up with a consensus.

Often, when we’re doing planning charrettes, we make changes on the fly with the client right there. Our team knows that just because that’s the site plan today, it doesn’t mean that it’s going to be tomorrow. We stay loose and flexible and adapt to changing needs and ideas because plans evolve over several iterations before we reach a decision. Infrastructure is generally one piece of many line items in a program, and when you’re dealing with a program manager, they frequently don’t concern themselves with it unless there is a schedule issue. For me, having been in the military, getting it right means something. While some projects may involve just a facility or a water line, I know our projects are important regardless of the scope.

How do you meet tight deadlines?

You meet tight deadlines by supplying the resources that are needed—you have to be proactive. We work very quickly through expedited schedules, and we’re willing to do it because we understand that success resides in getting a delivered facility that’s commissioned, accepted, and ready to support the program. A lot of our schedules are aggressive from the start, but by applying higher-level resources and selecting the right team, we’re able to meet the requirements. The way I see it, teaming with good soldiers who are confident in their ability to deal with unexpected situations and can lead when necessary helps get the job done.

Quality assurance is another factor we use to ensure that we’re delivering a product that meets the task order requirement. We know our clients are busy, so we help them by assuring them we will meet the project requirements and deadlines, which gives them one less thing to worry about. We drive the project, agree to a schedule, and keep our clients up to date by having weekly meetings. We also coordinate with our counterparts throughout the week to keep the project on track. Moving review meetings around and providing interim submittals to help expedite the process are examples of how we accomplish being flexible, meeting deadlines, and being a partner—it’s all part of how we execute our task orders.

Report: Schneider Electric's Promise of Action for a Sustainable Future

Fri, 06/26/2020 - 3:55pm

Our promise to future generations: we will be part of the solution, taking urgent actions now to co-create a brighter future for everyone, everywhere. A future where access to energy and digital are basic human rights. We’ll align with United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and measure our impact with transparency. In fact, our 2019 progress is highlighted throughout this report.

We designed this site so that you can explore it with a smaller environmental footprint. You won’t see fancy graphics, videos, or even that many colors. But there’s one thing you will see: progress.

Our Promise

Make an Impact This Pride Month With United Airlines

Fri, 06/26/2020 - 12:55pm

Even though the way we celebrate pride is different this year, it's as important as ever to work toward a better future for those who continue to stand up to injustice and inequality. Join us by donating your miles to partner charities or campaigns that benefit LGBTQ causes in the communities we serve.

Last year, with your help, we raised more than 1 million miles. This year, take pride in your miles by donating to organizations like:

  • Transgender Law Center, which works to change laws, policies and attitudes for transgender and gender nonconforming people

  • The Trevor Project, which provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention for LGBTQ youth

  • Born This Way Foundation, which supports creating an accepting, kinder and inclusive world

We'll match your donations mile-for-mile, up to 500,000 miles, per campaign. Together, let's make an impact, drive change and continue the movement that started 51 years ago with the Stonewall uprising.

Donate now

What Does the World Need From Hershey?

Fri, 06/26/2020 - 12:55pm


2019 was a special year for The Hershey Company. As we celebrated our 125th anniversary, we had the opportunity to explore our rich heritage and the legacy of our founder, who instilled in our business core values that connect us to one another and to the world. The energy within Hershey was tangible as you experienced the connectedness, passion, positivity and the deep pride and appreciation we have for each other and this special company.

As I write this note, the world is experiencing an unparalleled and rapidly evolving global pandemic. In this unprecedented time, our people and our business remain grounded in our purpose to make more moments of goodness. This grounding has allowed us to focus on what is most important—the health and safety of our colleagues, family and friends and our commitment to continue making those moments of goodness in people’s lives even when physical connection is limited.

Our company is wrapped in a deep legacy of caring for our people and communities. But it is no longer enough to consider what our company is able to do for the world. Now we must answer: what does the world need from Hershey?

We continuously meet with a variety of stakeholders—consumers, retailers, investors, governments and NGOs—all asking how we, and other companies, are making a positive impact on society’s most pressing issues. This Sustainability Report seeks to address those questions.

Our products rely on a global supply chain and agricultural ingredients. Climate change poses a significant, increasing pressure on these resources and the communities where we source them. This is why we committed to the Science Based Targets Initiative in January 2019 and are well on track for the January 2021 deadline to announce our target.

We continue to make good progress within our Cocoa For Good strategy, but we know there is a long way to go to resolve some of the most pressing issues facing cocoa-growing communities, including child labor. In 2019, we began publishing on our website the findings from our Child Labor Monitoring and Remediation Systems (CLMRS) work. We will continue this practice as we expand CLMRS to cover 100 percent of our cocoa supply chain in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire in the coming years.

Last year, we published our first comprehensive human rights policy that outlines our commitment to respect human rights throughout our value chain. We’ve also begun deploying a new human rights training program to help ensure everyone across our organization understands our values and how they personally can impact human rights across our business.

The Hershey Company has more than 125 years of experience managing through tough, fast-moving and unprecedented moments—two World Wars, economic depressions and recessions, and other momentous events. Each time, we planned. We took action. We learned and adapted. And we kept our focus on making the best decisions for our employees, our partners, our stockholders, our communities and the consumers we serve.

Today, we draw on that same spirit to keep our company resilient through new challenges that are disrupting economies and societies. I remain confident in the strength and resiliency of our business over the long-term, and in our remarkable leaders and employees who are executing our strategies, reacting to current changes and capitalizing on the opportunities this change presents.

We love making the brands that become part of people’s moments big and small. Going forward, it’s this purpose that inspires us to win so that we can continue to make more moments of goodness.

-Michele Buck
Chairman, President and CEO, The Hershey Company

Read more in Hershey's 2019 Sustainability Report

Cox: Our Commitment to Social Justice and Human Rights

Fri, 06/26/2020 - 12:55pm

Cox recently announced the establishment of a $1 million fund to help organizations that support social justice and civil and human rights. After taking input from employees on which organizations the fund should support, we are pleased to announce Cox will donate to the following national organizations:  

We're also giving to two Atlanta institutions where Cox has long-standing relationships: The National Center for Civil and Human Rights (NCCHR) and the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Action.  

Additionally, we committed to supporting the Ad Council’s Racial Equality campaign with $1 million in donated advertising time on Cox Communications’ network. The support will help spread the message of racial justice through the Ad Council's new campaign, Love Has No Labels. 

Cox has a long legacy of giving to organizations like 100 Black Men of Atlanta, the African American Partnership of United Way of Greater Atlanta and HBCU Rising, a mentoring program that addresses the gross underrepresentation of African Americans in our nation’s scientific fields. We will continue to support organizations like these in the future. 

Cox is also proud of its longstanding support of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, and along with other corporate and civic leaders, was a key donor in preventing the auction of Dr. King’s manuscripts, writings and books so they could stay in the city of Atlanta.  

We’re pleased to support long-standing partners such as the National Urban League with this new gift and help organizations responding to the current calls for equality under the law.   

Actions Speak 
We also know change starts within our own walls. We have taken several steps in our journey toward a more inclusive and welcoming Cox. This includes employee listening sessions, training, new resources and more. Discrimination has no home in our hearts or our company. Our Purpose is to make the world a better place, and we are committed to that today and in the future. 

A Major Milestone for Our LGBTQ+ Communities

Fri, 06/26/2020 - 12:55pm

Originally published by Adobe

At Adobe, we believe everyone deserves respect and equal treatment. We have been reminded of the gravity of this belief by the senseless acts of violence waged against the Black community.

Last year, Adobe joined more than 200 major employers in filing an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to recognize anti-discrimination protections for members of the LGBTQ+ community. Recently, the United States Supreme Court said, “An employer who fires an individual merely for being gay or transgender defies the law.” This guarantee of legal equality in employment is a great step forward for another group that has experienced discrimination and violence, and it should be celebrated as a major milestone.

This decision comes at an important time as we celebrate Pride month in the United States. Pride originated 50 years ago from the Stonewall uprising, which protested the persecution of the gay community by police. It is a timely reminder for the United States and global dialogue happening today. This year, Adobe is focused on empowering our communities, practicing resilience, and demonstrating solidarity through a series of events. 

Adobe is also calling on the United States Senate to pass the Equality Act to ensure that all members of the LGBTQ+ community are protected under federal civil rights laws, at work and in other aspects of their lives.

We stand united with our LGBTQ+ employees and communities, today, and always.

Qualcomm Named to 100 Best Corporate Citizens of 2020

Fri, 06/26/2020 - 12:55pm

We are proud to announce that Qualcomm has been named in 3BL Media’s annual 100 Best Corporate Citizens ranking, which recognizes outstanding environmental, social and governance (ESG) transparency and performance among the 1,000 largest, U.S. public companies.

The 100 Best Corporate Citizens ranking is based on 141 ESG transparency and performance factors in eight pillars: climate change, employee relations, environment, finance, governance, human rights, stakeholders, and society, and ESG performance. Using a methodology developed by 3BL Media, all Russell 1000 Index companies are researched by ISS ESG, the responsible investment research arm of Institutional Shareholder Services. There is no fee for companies to be included in 100 Best Corporate Citizens.

To compile the ranking, corporate data and information is obtained from publicly available sources only, rather than questionnaires or company submissions. Companies have the option to verify data collected for the ranking at no cost. Data and information used in the 2020 edition of the 100 Best Corporate Citizens ranking is from March 6, 2019 to March 13, 2020.

“Achieving the transformational targets in the Paris Agreement and UN Sustainable Development Goals in this decade means we need all companies to embed ESG issues into their business,” said Dave Armon, CEO of 3BL Media. “The best corporate citizens of 2020 are leaders, demonstrating how transparency, ambitious goals, robust strategies and accounting for all stakeholders builds business and social value.”

For access to the complete 100 Best Corporate Citizens of 2020 ranking and methodology visit: https://100best.3blmedia.com/

Schneider Sustainability Report 2019 - 2020: Development Action for a More Inclusive World

Thu, 06/25/2020 - 6:53pm

Schneider Sustainability Report 2019 - 2020 Development

At Schneider Electric, we believe that access to energy and digital are basic human rights. To date, 840 million people in the world still lack access to electricity1. This figure is down from 1.2 billion in 2010, indicative of significant progress made in the last decade. We must do even more.

Market economy will not last without more inclusiveness. It’s not a matter of ideology, it is a hard realism that calls us to a collective action, for both governments and companies. Our aim is to build a constructive dialogue to advance social inclusion, pilot and scale innovative, inclusive micro-economic business models, and contribute to inform macroeconomic policies.2  - Emmanuel Faber Co-chairman, Business for Inclusive Growth

In addition to achieving universal energy access, sustainable development is also about improving the living standards of local populations. This means promoting economic development in rural areas and supporting skills training. Schneider’s efforts include affordable solutions; impact investing; entrepreneurial opportunities; and engaging communities, employees, and non-profits around the topic of energy. 

As Schneider works toward its ambitious development targets, the company also helps advance the following United Nations (U.N.) Sustainable Development Goals:

  • SDG 1 (to end poverty)

  • SDG 4 (to advance quality education)

  • SDG 7 (to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy for all)

Learn more about the progress we made in these critical areas in 2019.

Sustainable development means leaving no one behind.

To help establish the developing world, Schneider takes meaningful action to ensure our business is mindful of all populations — including vulnerable countries and segments of society. We act as ambassadors for a just transition where a healthy economy and a clean environment co-exist.3

In September 2019, Schneider joined the global Business for Inclusive Growth (B4IG) coalition, sponsored by the French Presidency of the G7 and overseen by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) to strengthen our commitment to tackling inequality. 

Among 34 leading international member companies, we help pool and strengthen private sector efforts to reduce inequalities linked to opportunity, gender, and territories, and to build greater synergies with government-led efforts. 


1“Business pledging against inequalities at the G7 summit 2019,” OECD, 2019. 
2“Tracking SDG7: The Energy Progress Report Highlights,” a joint report between the International Energy Agency, International Renewable Energy Agency, United Nations Statistics Division, World Bank Group, and World Health Organization, 2019. 
3“What is Just Transition?,” Just Transition Alliance, 2019.