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It's A Three-Peat! Green America Names T-Mobile to the Top Spot on Its Wireless Scorecard Yet Again

Tue, 06/16/2020 - 12:37pm

This is the third year that nonprofit Green America released its Green America Wireless Scorecard, which measures clean energy usage and reductions in greenhouse-gas emissions within the wireless industry... and this is the third year in a row that T-Mobile came out ahead of its competitors!

T-Mobile earned an A- grade for Clean Energy Commitment, while Sprint jumped up two full spots in the rankings – meaning the companies claimed the top two spots. Each company received a separate score because the rankings were based on 2019 data derived when they operated independently.

“Before the merger, T-Mobile and Sprint were individually making great progress toward ambitious sustainability goals, but now, as a combined company, the New T-Mobile is poised to do even bigger and better things!” said Janice V. Kapner, T-Mobile's Chief Communications Officer. “We are really proud of our track record when it comes to protecting the environment and we appreciate that Green America continues to recognize us as the clear leader in sustainability for the wireless industry.”

T-Mobile at the Top

T-Mobile has a history of pushing the competition forward through industry-leading firsts and its green energy use is no different. In 2018, the Un-carrier became the first major U.S. telecom to sign the RE100 commitment to power its entire business with 100% renewable energy by 2021. In less than two years, the company has made huge strides toward achieving this aggressive goal by signing eight major energy contracts that are either online or under contract to open in 2020. T-Mobile remains the ONLY major U.S. wireless company signed onto RE100 and the ONLY one to have its carbon-reduction goals approved by the Science Based Targets Initiative.

Sprint Jumps Up the Rankings

Sprint previously ranked fourth on the scorecard in 2018 and 2019, but now claims the second spot on the list with a grade of B-. The jump is thanks to its commitment to source 100% renewable electricity across all operations (retail stores, offices, call centers and network sites) by 2025. And Sprint signed virtual power purchase agreements (VPPAs) for two wind energy projects set to come online in 2020 and 2021. Sprint also formed a partnership with Direct Energy Renewable Services and is now powering its 800-plus locations in Virginia with 100% renewable energy.

Supercharged Un-carrier is Bigger, Better AND Bringing More Green Energy to the Grid!

The combined T-Mobile and Sprint has committed to not just being a bigger company, but also a better company, too! Bringing two networks together and building the world's most transformative 5G network requires a lot of energy — a challenge that the Un-carrier knows presents an enormous opportunity. T-Mobile is transmitting more data per energy unit than ever before and renewable energy is helping the company become more carbon efficient. So, as the company continues to grow, it plans to bring even more green energy to the grid.

Now that the merger is complete, T-Mobile will assess its expanded footprint and announce a new RE100 target date in the coming months.

For more information on T-Mobile’s sustainability and environmental efforts, visit the T-Mobile Sustainability Page.

About T-Mobile US, Inc.

T-Mobile U.S. Inc. (NASDAQ: TMUS) is America’s supercharged Un-carrier, delivering an advanced 4G LTE and transformative nationwide 5G network that will offer reliable connectivity for all. T-Mobile’s customers benefit from its unmatched combination of value and quality, unwavering obsession with offering them the best possible service experience and undisputable drive for disruption that creates competition and innovation in wireless and beyond. Based in Bellevue, Wash., T-Mobile provides services through its subsidiaries and operates its flagship brands, T-Mobile, Metro by T-Mobile and Sprint. For more information please visit: http://www.t-mobile.com.

CONTACT:

T-Mobile US Media Relations MediaRelations@t-mobile.com

The Mosaic Company Announces 2025 Global Sustainability Targets

Tue, 06/16/2020 - 12:37pm

Originally published by The Mosaic Company

Constant progress is the hallmark of Mosaic’s sustainability journey. From our earliest sustainability disclosure in 2010 to our first quantified targets in 2015, we’ve been on a path of progress – committed to engagement, transparency, accountability, and improved performance in the areas that matter most to us and our constituents.

Our latest milestone – the launch of our 2025 Environmental, Social and Governance Performance Targets – is another important step forward. Beyond driving value for our company, the 2025 targets are a vehicle for maximizing our positive impact on society. Aligned to our focus areas of People, Environment, Society and Company, the targets support our company’s broad thinking about sustainability. We believe that for our business to thrive in the long-term, we must be good stewards of the natural, human and social resources we rely upon to execute our mission to help the world grow the food it needs. It is both our responsibility and our opportunity.

We are proud of this work and what it represents for our diverse constituents, and we feel simultaneously challenged and invigorated by what lies ahead. Our targets are only one of the ways we are living responsibility as one of our strategic priorities; we encourage our stakeholders to view our 2019 sustainability disclosure for more information about our leadership in this area.

Take a look at our 2025 targets. While each target was created primarily to support one focus area, there are interconnections between all of them. We choose to focus our efforts on areas with broad reaching companywide and societal impacts.

We’re strengthening our commitment to reducing our environmental impact with bold reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and water use — in addition to a dozen other critical targets.

Sustainability Reporting and ESG Engagement Europe Is Here

Tue, 06/16/2020 - 9:37am

Covid-19, the climate crisis and social inequalities are critical issues that businesses are being tasked to  help address. This brings an increasing need for business to present accurate impacts and actions that prove they’re a force for good. Now, maybe more than ever before, it’s vital that business can outline future ambitions and resilience, whilst communicating a purpose that helps address the current challenges that we face.

Therefore, Ethical Corporation by Reuters Events is delighted to announce the launch of the  Sustainability Reporting and ESG Engagement Europe, an online 2-day event series –  which is entirely free to attend.

We are humbled that our speakers and partners are going online with us and share our belief that we must do what we can to carry on communicating at this critical time.

Check out the full, comprehensive virtual offering here, all completely free to access!

Why The Virtual Sustainability Reporting and ESG Engagement Europe is essential viewing:

  • It’s free for all to join: In such a difficult time, we want to unify the industry and we’ve taken the decision to allow anyone to sign up to listen live, ask questions and participate.

  • A speaker faculty even better than before: You’ll learn from 50+ speakers with 20+ free sessions with presentations, panels, fireside chats, interactive workshops and Q&A. You’ll also see hours of additional live and on-demand content, including exclusives from Yorkshire Water, JLL, Net Impact Amsterdam, MOL Group and many more

  • Connect with industry leaders around the world: Without the constraints of geography, we’ll have thousands of industry leaders from across the globe coming together to network and collaborate.

  • Full virtual exhibition: Showcasing exhibitors, search for the latest services and technology solutions from your desk, watch demo videos and the ability to share your virtual business card.

View more info and register for the FREE virtual event here!

Best regards,
Ana

Ana Uzcanga
Project Director
Reuters Events
Phone: +44 (0) 207 375 7213

Read Announcement

ImpactAssets and Stop the Spread Join Forces to Fight COVID-19 Pandemic

Tue, 06/16/2020 - 9:37am

As 22 states across the country see a spike in new coronavirus cases, ImpactAssets and Stop the Spread combined forces today to bring together impact investing and private and public sector resources to solve the immediate and evolving needs of this urgent public health crisis. The new partnership between ImpactAssets, a $1.1B nonprofit impact investment firm, and Stop the Spread, a coalition of 1,300+ volunteer CEOs and executives working to catalyze actions and support governmental response to COVID-19, will work in part to address the devastating health and economic impact of COVID-19 on communities of color in the U.S. 

Through this partnership, Stop the Spread will become a part of the ImpactAssets COVID Response Program and ImpactAssets will assume support for the activities of Stop the Spread. Under the ImpactAssets umbrella, Stop the Spread will continue to mobilize corporate America through the facilitation of partnerships between companies looking to retool operations to meet critical needs in personal protective equipment, testing and tracing on the frontline.

Together, the two organizations will provide thought leadership, resources and research on the leading edge of the evolving pandemic situation and its societal impacts. Stop the Spread’s subject matter expertise and pipeline of projects amplifies ImpactAssets’ ability to identify and catalyze the most promising and urgent COVID-19 solutions with philanthropic and investment capital.

“Stop the Spread has built a phenomenal movement and an impressive group of committed CEOs and executives, volunteers and subject matter experts,” said ImpactAssets CEO Margret Trilli. “ImpactAssets is honored to be the new home for this important work. Our partnership levels up our combined ability to provide crucial help to business partners as they work together to support heroes on the frontline and the most vulnerable at this critical time.”

“Stop the Spread emerged from a shared compassion of leaders around the U.S., focused on how they might lead boldly and by example in the response to COVID,” said Rachel Carlson, CEO of Guild Education and Stop the Spread Volunteer. “What started as a movement has now found a perfect organizational home in ImpactAssets, which will carry on the important work of supporting and championing critical response efforts around the U.S.” 

Urgent Action
While the U.S. has made progress addressing staggering shortages in important supplies, significant gaps remain. Communities of color are disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. For example, the CDC reports that nearly one-third of infections nationwide have affected Black Americans, though Blacks represent only 13% of the US population. Likewise, nearly one-third of those who have died as a result of COVID-19 in the US are Black.  

In addition, the COVID Racial Data Tracker found that Hispanics test positive for the coronavirus at rates two times higher than Whites in 30 states, and over four times higher in eight states, while Native American communities have accounted for 60% of cases in New Mexico but only 9% of the population. In Arizona, 136 Native American have died from COVID-19, accounting for 21% of deaths but just 4% of the population. These disparities and others, resulting from the ongoing and compounding impacts of systemic racism, make this partnership absolutely critical.

Further, recent reports from the National Institutes of Health make the case that medical equipment continues to be needed for distribution right now, for national stockpiles in anticipation of future crises, and for use in other countries as they battle COVID-19. There are also dramatic projected shortages in testing and diagnostic equipment that will be required for safe ‘return to work’ decisions in the coming months.

“ImpactAssets and Stop the Spread are committed to working tirelessly to support COVID-19 relief, helping catalyze private sector response and building innovative solutions that go beyond the immediate crisis to address issues of social equity and support the communities and individuals hit hardest by the crisis at hand,” said Christian Peele, Director of Stop the Spread Operations. 

Mission Alignment
Since its founding in March, STS has played a catalytic role in corporate America’s response to fighting the COVID-19 crisis. To date, STS has been contacted by more than 400 companies, including Fortune 500 companies, startups, and regional manufacturers, and in turn, connected more than 85 partners to spur the manufacture of PPE, ventilators, and research in testing and diagnostics. Drawing on STS’s library of resources and its network, STS’ partners have gone on to supply more than 40,000 ventilators when critically needed and manufacture more than 20 million units of personal protective equipment, including N95 face masks, face shields, and more. 

ImpactAssets has been one of the nation’s leading impact investing organizations since its founding in 2010, channeling catalytic investments to more than 700 companies and funds, recently cresting $1.1B in assets under management, and establishing one of the strongest brands in the impact investing sector. The firm is allocating much needed philanthropic and investment capital to three key areas of need during the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • IA Stop the Spread Fund: investing in frontline COVID healthcare and PPE needs;

  • IA Preserve the Progress Fund: supporting a set of companies who have materially advanced Climate and Social Equality initiatives and whose survival is integral to preserving and advancing that progress;

  • IA Business and Community Resilience Fund: providing financial and reinvention support to small businesses and individuals hit hardest by the economic downturn.

About the ImpactAssets Stop the Spread COVID Response Program
The ImpactAssets Stop the Spread COVID Response Program is the convergence of an impact investing and private sector response to solving the immediate and evolving needs of COVID-19, including the devastating health and economic impact on communities of color in the U.S. The Program harnesses the collective power of ImpactAssets’ leading impact investment and organizational capacity and Stop the Spread’s agile partnership model connecting and catalyzing private and public sector response to COVID-19. In the immediate term, combined forces are addressing acute frontline healthcare needs by helping companies access knowledge and connections to spur rapid production of personal protective equipment, ventilators and testing. Identified models of critical-needs innovation are connected to investment capital through the ImpactAssets Stop the Spread Fund, a philanthropic and impact investing fund addressing frontline COVID healthcare and personal protective equipment needs. By bringing together a powerful community of 1,300+ CEO’s and executives, supporters, donors, subject-matter experts and a 400+ pipeline of potentially promising COVID initiatives, the Program strengthens the nation’s COVID response.

Learn more at www.impactassets.org and www.stopthespread.org

# # #

Nonprofits Sue Nestlé Purina Pet Food for Deceptive Marketing of Cat Food

Tue, 06/16/2020 - 6:37am

Nonprofits Toxin Free USA and Clean Label Project filed a lawsuit against Nestlé USA and Nestlé Purina PetCare Company for deceptive marketing and sale of cat foods labeled as “natural” and with “no artificial preservatives.” Lab tests reveal that certain Purina cat food products contain the synthetic herbicide glyphosate and the artificial preservative ethoxyquin. The consumer protection lawsuit charges that Purina exploits consumers’ preference for pet foods marketed as “natural.”

A study conducted by The Nielsen Company found that “sales of U.S. pet foods bearing the claims ‘natural’ and ‘no artificial preservatives’ have grown dramatically” and that “many consumers perceive natural foods to have unique advantages.” National surveys consistently find that consumers believe “natural” to mean that the products are produced without synthetic pesticides or artificial chemicals.

“Chronic illness has been on the rise, not only in humans, but also in our pets. Amid increasing awareness of the links between synthetic chemicals and chronic health problems, Purina is exploiting consumers’ preference for truly natural, toxin-free pet food and must be held accountable for misleading marketing practices,” says Toxin Free USA executive director, Diana Reeves.

“There has been an increase in the humanization of pet food when it comes to marketing, but there is a disconnect between the marketing and the actual pet food contents. Consumers have a right to know the true contents of the food and products they buy for themselves and their families. This includes their pets," says Clean Label Project executive director, Jaclyn Bowen.

Glyphosate is used as an agricultural and landscaping herbicide and found in Bayer-Monsanto’s popular weedkiller, Roundup. Studies have linked glyphosate to cancer, liver and kidney disease, and other adverse health conditions. There are currently an estimated 125,000 pending lawsuits against Bayer-Monsanto alleging Roundup caused non-Hodgkin lymphoma in plaintiffs.

Ethoxyquin, developed by Monsanto in the 1950s and initially registered as a pesticide, is a synthetic antioxidant that is included in some pet foods as a preservative to protect fats and fat-soluble vitamins from turning rancid. Studies show that ethoxyquin can have adverse effects on the liver, and have toxic effects on both living cells and genetic material.

The Nestlé USA/Purina suit, filed under the D.C. Consumer Protection Procedures Act by the nonprofits’ counsel Richman Law Group, seeks to end Purina’s deceptive business practices by requiring that Purina remove or qualify the “natural” and “no artificial preservatives” claims on its cat food products.

Read the full complaint HERE.

 # # #

Clean Label Project is a national nonprofit with the mission to bring truth and transparency to consumer product labeling through data, science, and education.

GMO Free USA/Toxin Free USA is a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit advocating for a clean, healthy food system and educating consumers about the hazards of GMOs, synthetic pesticides and other toxins.

3BL Media Announces 100 Best Corporate Citizens of 2020

Tue, 06/16/2020 - 6:37am

3BL Media announced today its annual 100 Best Corporate Citizens ranking, recognizing leading environmental, social and governance (ESG) transparency and performance amongst the 1,000 largest U.S. public companies.

Owens Corning tops the ranking for the second consecutive year and is the first company ever to do so. Owens Corning is followed by Citi, General Mills, Cisco and HP.

Since 2009, only 22 companies have made the ranking each year including 3M, Abbott, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Colgate-Palmolive, Gap, General Mills, Intel, Kimberly-Clark, Microsoft, Nike, Texas Instruments and Xerox. 

Companies new to the ranking in 2020 include Estée Lauder, Hershey, Hilton, Micron Technology, Republic Services, Stanley Black & Decker and Target.

Access the 100 Best Corporate Citizens of 2020 ranking here.

"This is a decisive decade to achieve global climate and societal goals, while rebuilding an inclusive and resilient economy in the era of COVID-19,” said Dave Armon, CEO of 3BL Media, which owns 100 Best Corporate Citizens“Corporate leadership on ESG topics is absolutely critical to a sustainable future and so is transparency. 3BL Media sets a standard for transparency through 100 Best Corporate Citizens that advances corporate accountability at this pivotal time.”

The 100 Best Corporate Citizens methodology is set by 3BL Media and based on 141 ESG transparency and performance factors across eight pillars: Climate Change; Employee Relations; Environment; ESG Performance; Finance; Governance; Human Rights; Stakeholders and Society. Due to timing, no corporate responses to COVID-19 were included.

“We believe the ESG factors considered for 100 Best Corporate Citizens are the foundation for a just response to COVID-19 and addressing systemic racism,” continued Armon. “Looking ahead to the 2021 methodology, we will incorporate additional factors that address key issues exposed during the pandemic and Black Lives Matter movement and are in conversation with our community to provide feedback.”

To compile the ranking, data and information is obtained from public sources only, rather than questionnaires or company submissions. Research is conducted by ISS ESG, the responsible investment research arm of Institutional Shareholder Services. There is no fee or costs for companies to be assessed or to verify research by ISS ESG.

About the 100 Best Corporate Citizens
The 100 Best Corporate Citizens ranking was first published in 1999 in Business Ethics Magazine and then by Corporate Responsibility Magazine from 2007 to 2019. 3BL Media has owned 100 Best Corporate Citizens since 2017 and continues the legacy of ranking the Russell 1000 Index against a set of ESG transparency and performance factors using only public data and information. Learn more here.  

About 3BL Media
3BL Media delivers purpose-driven communications for the world’s leading companies. Our unrivaled distribution, editorial and leadership platforms inspire and support global sustainable business. Learn more here.

CONTACT: Robbie Lock, Director of 100 Best Corporate Citizens, rlock@3blmedia.com or +1.802.789.8257.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise Releases Living Progress Report

Mon, 06/15/2020 - 3:36pm

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (NYSE: HPE) today released its annual Living Progress Report for fiscal year 2019, demonstrating its ongoing commitment to being a force for good by equipping customers with sustainable technology solutions, upholding HPE’s own high Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) standards across its value chain, and prioritizing company culture to fuel business outcomes.

“Our team members’ passion, ingenuity and resilience enable us to create technology solutions to tackle the many pressing challenges facing society today,” said HPE President and CEO Antonio Neri. “Current discussions around systemic racism, inclusion, and diversity demonstrate the importance of taking bold actions to create a more equitable and sustainable future. We are proud of our progress and committed to do more as a company and in partnership with our peers, customers, and partners.”

HPE intensified focus on culture

In 2019, HPE intensified its strategic focus on culture and launched the “Work That Fits Your Life” program to support a more inclusive workplace that values team members’ experience inside and outside of the workplace. New benefits include six months of paid parental leave for mothers and fathers, career reskilling and transition support, and a company-wide shortened work day once a month on “Wellness Friday”.

HPE is investing in human capital because it wants to be a place where people can learn, develop skills and do career-defining work. HPE’s Executive Committee developed the “Work that Fits your Life” program in partnership with its Board of Directors, 54% of whom identify with one or more diverse groups.  One of the key goals of the program was to drive inclusion in the workplace. And, the company began tying diversity metrics to executive compensation to further embed inclusion and diversity into the organization.

In 2019, HPE’s employee engagement score rose 10 percent and has risen an unprecedented 18 percent since 2017, and its team members clocked their one millionth hour of company-supported volunteer time since 2016. In addition, HPE offered opportunities to engage with more technology-driven social impact activities through the inaugural HPE Accelerating Impact initiative.

This year’s Living Progress Report also, for the first time, details racial diversity statistics of its team member population, an important step in being transparent and addressing systemic bias and inequality in our society.

Improving energy efficiencies with everything as-a-service

HPE announced that it would make its entire portfolio available as-a-service by 2022, a consumption model that can bring significant energy efficiency gains and cost savings to its customers by eliminating overprovisioning and allowing customers to pay for only what they use. In addition, service-based models allow HPE to maintain chain of custody over equipment to ensure recovery and refurbishment, reducing physical waste and the consumption of raw materials. In 2019, 88% of the nearly four million assets returned to HPE’s Technology Renewal Centers were given a new life, but shifting to more consumption-based solutions is predicted to dramatically reduce the consumption of unnecessary IT assets.

Leading the transition to a low carbon economy

HPE remained on track to meet all of its 2025 climate targets, having reduced its carbon footprint by 47% in just four years. The company also introduced a new emissions reduction target for its transportation logistics footprint – aiming to reduce the footprint by 35% by 2025. It also continued to see opportunity to help customers thrive in a carbon constrained world - with efficient IT products and services representing nearly USD $7.7 billion in revenue in 2019.

Engaging supply chains as a force for good

HPE continued to hold suppliers to high environmental, social and ethical standards. In 2019, HPE’s supply chain audit and assurance improvement program touched over 133,000 workers and the company guided 51% of its suppliers on how to set their own science-based climate targets. In addition, HPE sought to promote inclusion and diversity through its supply chain by spending approximately USD $1 billion with small enterprises and minority, women and veteran-owned businesses in th­­e United States.

About Hewlett Packard Enterprise

Hewlett Packard Enterprise is the global edge-to-cloud platform-as-a-service company that helps organizations accelerate outcomes by unlocking value from all of their data, everywhere. Built on decades of reimagining the future and innovating to advance the way we live and work, HPE delivers unique, open and intelligent technology solutions, with a consistent experience across all clouds and edges, to help customers develop new business models, engage in new ways, and increase operational performance. For more information, visit: www.hpe.com.­­­

New Solar-Powered EV Charging Station on I-85 in Georgia Delivers 300% More Power

Mon, 06/15/2020 - 3:36pm

New Solar-Powered EV Charging Station on I-85 in Georgia Delivers 300% More Power

The Ray, Donovan Energy, and ABB have partnered to upgrade the solar-powered electric vehicle charging station located at the visitor information center (VIC) located off Interstate 85 in West Point, Georgia. The station was commissioned on June 3, 2020. Charging at this location is free and provided by The Ray, a nonprofit organization and 18-mile living transportation lab located along the I-85 corridor between LaGrange, Georgia, and the Georgia/Alabama state line.

This station is three times more powerful than the original 50 kW station installed in 2015 by The Ray in partnership with Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia. That station was the Southeast’s first solar-powered EV charging station, and, prior to its installation, travel between the state capitols of Georgia and Alabama was not possible for the majority of electric vehicles.

Now, The Ray has taken another innovative step forward with this ABB 175 kW Terra HP, a modular, high-powered charging system designed to minimize charging time. “At The Ray, we want to demonstrate what’s next and showcase the electrification of transportation,” said John Picard, Vice President of The Ray. “With this new charger, we can show how easy it is to store energy and rapidly recharge. Range anxiety has always been an issue with electric cars, but that’s not the case anymore as The Ray switches on the most efficient fast charger in the market.”

“From a drive-over tire pressure and tread safety check and solar panels that generate clean energy at the visitor center, to this upgraded EV charging station, to the testing of emerging technologies along I-85 like all-weather striping for machine-operated vehicles, Georgia DOT is proud to work with The Ray,” said Georgia DOT Commissioner Russell R. McMurry, P.E. “The goal is to bring sustainable and transformative innovations to transportation.”

The ABB modular system was recommended and procured by Donovan Energy, which served as the technology partner to The Ray for this electrification project. Donovan Energy, a clean energy project development and finance company based in Cincinnati, has delivered over 400 energy efficiency and building retrofit projects since 2016. One of the most important aspects of the ABB Terra HP is that it is future-proofed. As a modular system, a second 175 kW power unit can be added, and allowing the system to easily scale up to 350 kW and immediately serve the next generation of EVs. “We felt the flexible architecture of the ABB Terra HP high power solution was an ideal fit for what The Ray was looking to accomplish in this upgrade of their charging infrastructure,” said Jeff Martin, Chief Operating Officer of Donovan Energy.

"ABB is committed to deploying technology for the advancement of society in an efficient and sustainable manner," said Bob Stojanovic, Director of ABB’s EV Infrastructure business in North America. "We are privileged to have the opportunity to deploy our DC fast charging technology in a fashion that fits with The Ray's vision for innovative transportation models and connected communities."

“The debut of high-powered, 175kW fast charging on our interstate is a remarkable effort on more than one account,” said Harriet Langford, President of The Ray. “Not only does it highlight our dedication to the electrification of the transportation system, but it’s another example of how The Ray can evolve and upgrade previously piloted technologies.”

"Having EV chargers in convenient locations like rest stops are the next frontier for electric vehicle charging," said Tim Echols of the state's Public Service Commission. "The Ray, Georgia DOT and City of West Point are leading the way in bringing this important technology from theory to reality."

While most EV charging happens at home, the availability of fast-charging stations, like the one that The Ray is deploying, is an essential and strategic component to the future of our interstate system and infrastructure. Stations like the one at the VIC on I-85 allow travelers to quickly recharge and travel long distances confidently. The solar-powered EV (PV4EV) charging station is grid-connected to ensure its operability day or night and all year long. The clean energy generated by the twelve-panel Solar LIFT adds further renewable resources to the local grid that supplies power to the ABB Terra HP, ensuring that clean cars can be fueled by clean, renewable energy on The Ray on I-85.

About - The Ray

The Ray is a proving ground for the evolving ideas and technologies that will transform the transportation infrastructure of the future, beginning with the corridor of road that is named in memory of Ray C. Anderson (1934-2011), a Georgia native who became a captain of industry and was recognized as a leader in green business when he challenged his company, Atlanta-based Interface, Inc., to reimagine the enterprise as a sustainable company—one that would pursue zero environmental footprint. Chaired by Ray’s daughter Harriet Langford. Learn more at www.theray.org.

About - Donovan Energy

Based in Cincinnati, Donovan Energy is an energy project development company that approaches energy in new ways to help our customers reduce energy use and save money. As stewards at the forefront of clean energy technology, we offer solutions that decrease energy costs (procurement), finance energy projects (PACE finance), reduce energy use (LED Lighting, HVAC and Building Envelope solutions) and produce renewable energy. Our team of industry veterans powers energy savings for commercial and industrial customers, spanning education, commercial real estate, healthcare, municipal, manufacturing, nonprofit and parking. Learn more at www.donovanenergy.com.

About the Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT)

Georgia Department of Transportation plans, constructs and maintains Georgia’s state and federal highways. We’re involved in bridge, waterway, public transit, rail, general aviation, bike and pedestrian programs. And we help local governments maintain their roads. Georgia DOT and its nearly 4,000 employees are committed to delivering a transportation system focused on innovation, safety, sustainability and mobility. Through a culture of innovation and collaboration, the Department’s vision is to boost Georgia’s competitiveness through leadership in transportation. Learn more at www.dot.ga.gov

About - ABB

ABB (NYSE: ABB) is a leading global engineering company that energizes the transformation of society and industry to achieve a more productive, sustainable future. By connecting software to its electrification, robotics, automation and motion portfolio, ABB pushes the boundaries of technology to drive performance to new levels. With a history of excellence stretching back more than 130 years, ABB’s success is driven by 144,000 talented employees in over 100 countries. www.abb.com

RESOURCES Georgia DOT, UGA and The Ray Test Alternatives to Traditional Land Management Strategies on I-85 First U.S. Solar Road Gets a Technical Upgrade - More Energy Production Expected “Connected Roads” Lane Markings on The Ray to Improve Driver Safety & Facilitate Safe Testing of Self-Driving Vehicles

PayPal Announces $530 Million Commitment to Support Black Businesses, Strengthen Minority Communities and Fight Economic Inequality

Mon, 06/15/2020 - 12:36pm

PayPal Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: PYPL) on June 11, 2020 announced a $530 million commitment to support Black and minority-owned businesses and communities in the U.S., especially those hardest hit by the pandemic, to help address economic inequality. As part of its investment, the company is bolstering its internal programs to further increase diversity, equity and inclusion within the PayPal community.

"For far too long, Black people in America have faced deep-seated injustice and systemic economic inequality. Black lives matter and we need to drive transformative change. We must take decisive action to close the racial wealth gap that sustains this profound inequity," said Dan Schulman, president and CEO, PayPal. "PayPal is uniquely positioned to help in this area, and we are committed to doing our part to address the unacceptable racial divide by advancing a more just economy and society. We've listened to leaders in the Black community about the challenges facing Black business owners and the support and investments needed to sustain Black-owned businesses and create long-term economic opportunity. The holistic set of initiatives we are implementing are designed to help address the immediate crisis and set the foundation for sustained engagement and progress towards economic equality and social justice."

The commitment includes short-term, medium-term, and long-term investments in the community:

  • $10 million fund for empowerment grants to Black-owned businesses impacted by COVID-19 or civil unrest. These grants will provide direct support to business owners to cover expenses related to stabilizing and reopening their businesses. The fund will be managed in partnership with Association for Enterprise Opportunity, a leading national nonprofit expanding economic opportunity for Black entrepreneurs through its Tapestry Project. Interested businesses can apply for a grant at aeoworks.org/paypalgrant/.

  • $5 million fund for program grants and employee matching gifts for PayPal's nonprofit community partners that are working to strengthen Black business owners by providing them with microloans, technical assistance, information, mentoring and access to digital solutions to speed their recovery from the impact of the pandemic. Local partners are best positioned to know the needs of their communities and these grants are intended to catalyze and further empower the necessary work they are doing to sustain Black-owned businesses. Initial organizations receiving grants through the fund include Association for Enterprise OpportunityBaltimore Business LendingChicago Neighborhood Initiatives Micro Finance GroupExpanding Black Business Credit InitiativeKivaMORTARNebraska Enterprise FundOpportunity FundRising Tide CapitalStart Small Think BigWalker's Legacy Foundation and Women's Opportunity Resource Center. As part of this the company will expand the PayPal Gives Employee Matching Gifts program. PayPal will match $2 for every $1 employees donate and $10 for every volunteer hour dedicated to racial and economic justice efforts in local communities, up to $500,000.

  • $500 million commitment to create an economic opportunity fund to support and strengthen Black and underrepresented minority businesses and communities over the long term, and designed to help drive financial health, access and generational wealth creation. This initiative will include bolstering the company's relationships with community banks and credit unions serving underrepresented minority communities, as well as investing directly into Black and minority-led startups and minority-focused investment funds. Startups and investment funds are invited to express interest to the PayPal Ventures team here.

"AEO advocates for economic inclusion and works to create transformational change in the marketplace for small businesses," said Connie Evans, president and CEO, Association for Enterprise Opportunity (AEO). "Now, more than ever, it's critical to invest in Black-owned businesses, create a more equitable system and break through the barriers that have historically challenged Black business ownership and wealth creation."

PayPal is committing $15 million to strengthen its internal diversity and inclusion programs to foster greater awareness, build equity, and support recruiting, hiring and career advancement of Black and minority employees. This also includes increased funding for the company's employee resource groups as well as supporting community partners through pro bono work and secondments by its employees.

These initiatives build on the extensive financial health and small business empowerment programs PayPal already supports. They will add a particular emphasis on Black-owned businesses, sharpen the focus of that work, accelerate the deployment of PayPal's resources and fuel employee engagement. PayPal previously announced the company was donating $500,000 to organizations doing meaningful work to build toward racial equality, healing and reconciliation, including the Chicago Urban LeagueLeadership Conference on Civil and Human RightsMinneapolis African American Leadership ForumNAACP Legal Defense FundNational Urban LeagueRepairers of the Breach and The Empowerment Network.

About PayPal
PayPal has remained at the forefront of the digital payment revolution for more than 20 years. By leveraging technology to make financial services and commerce more convenient, affordable, and secure, the PayPal platform is empowering more than 300 million consumer and merchant accounts in more than 200 markets to join and thrive in the global economy. For more information, visit paypal.com.

About Association for Enterprise Opportunity
AEO is the leading voice of innovation for microbusiness and microfinance. We create economic opportunity for underserved entrepreneurs throughout the United States. We engineer transformational change through Research, Incubation, Convening & Advocacy to foster a robust and inclusive marketplace. For more information, visit aeoworks.org.

Contacts
Media Relations Contacts
For PayPal:
Josh Criscoe
jcriscoe@paypal.com 

Janine Kamwene
jkamwene@paypal.com

For Association for Enterprise Opportunity:
Molly Boyle
press@aeoworks.org

FedEx Logistics Helps in the Fight Against COVID-19 by Distributing Personal Protective Equipment to Hospitals throughout Latin America

Mon, 06/15/2020 - 12:36pm

Originally published by FedEx

FedEx Logistics, Inc., a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX), is providing essential supply chain services to support the fight against COVID-19. FedEx is supplying Medline personal protective equipment (PPE) from a FedEx Logistics facility located in the Panama Pacifico Free Trade Zone and Panama, to hospitals in South America, Central America and the Caribbean.

Medline is a manufacturer and distributor of medical supplies and clinical programs. To date, over 850,200 face masks have been shipped to hospitals throughout the region with help from FedEx Express, the world’s largest express transportation company.

“FedEx Logistics is helping to protect front-line workers at hospitals throughout Latin America at this critical time,” said Jeff Euler, vice president of the Americas, FedEx Logistics. “We are honored to serve these brave men and women and to be an essential part of the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The operation to get emergency supplies to hospitals began March 10 as the virus continued its global spread. To date, around 2,000 boxes, each with 300 masks, have been distributed throughout the Caribbean and another 1,000 boxes to Central America. Several more containers full of PPE are on the way to Panama for distribution to these areas and other customers in South America.

The equipment includes face masks, gloves, shoe covers and disposable clothing — everything that will help to protect doctors, nurses and hospital administrators.

FedEx Logistics receives the equipment from global manufacturers, and then packages and fulfills orders, in a Free Trade Zone that is home to many multinational companies that do business throughout Latin America, including Medline.

“FedEx Logistics was agile and acted with a sense of urgency to provide essential supply chain services, enabling us to get protective equipment to where it is needed the most,” said Oscar Chavarria, vice president, Latin America, Medline. “And FedEx Express provided a very reliable service despite many challenges in the current environment.”

In August last year, FedEx Logistics became the third-party logistics provider for all of Medline’s medical consumables and patient-care products in the Latin America region.

How Do You #BacktheFrontline?

Mon, 06/15/2020 - 12:36pm

At Johnson & Johnson, we always have and always will #BacktheFrontline. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, we launched 30 Days of Action to channel our collective gratitude for frontline health workers into concrete ways you can act to support these fearless frontline heroes now and after the crisis peaks. They’re relentless in their commitment to providing essential health services; let’s be relentless in our commitment to them.

Follow along with us on @JNJGlobalHealth on Twitter and/or Instagram to hear from our leaders, employees and partners around the world about how YOU can meaningfully contribute.

In hospitals and labs, homes and communities, we all play a role in COVID-19 response efforts. Hear from JNJ Chairman and CEO Alex Gorsky on the impact made possible by #BackTheFrontline. We have a long way to go, but we will get there together.

Green Mountain Energy Launches Nationwide Offering of Monthly and Annual Carbon Offset Subscriptions

Mon, 06/15/2020 - 9:36am

Green Mountain Energy is now offering consumers across the country a convenient way to green-up their lifestyle through monthly and annual carbon offset subscriptions. Consumers can engage quickly through a new website, GreenMountainOffsets.com, and have the option of numerous plans to reduce their carbon footprint by purchasing third-party verified carbon offsets. Green Mountain, the longest serving renewable energy retailer in the country, started its carbon offsets program in 2006.

“As a mission-based company, our role is to offer customers products that help them live more sustainably,” said Mark Parsons, vice president and general manager for Green Mountain Energy. “Beyond working to reduce unnecessary carbon emissions, customers are choosing carbon offsets as a next step to minimize their carbon footprint, and Green Mountain Offsets aims to facilitate this process for them. Small choices can lead to big impact.”

The company started its carbon offsets program in response to renewable energy customers who wanted to offset their events and has witnessed firsthand the growth of the voluntary carbon offsets market. Green Mountain has designed four offset categories based on annualized average consumption data of American consumers by the World Bank and the United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) for emissions connected with consumption from various sources.

Green Mountain Offsets monthly subscriptions include:

  1. Lifestyle Offsets: On average, an American citizen is responsible for 36,000 lbs. of CO2 emissions per year, or approximately 16.5 metric tons per year. Lifestyle offsets include plans for individuals, couples, a family of four and customizable options based on the total number of family members.

  2. Commuting Offsets: EPA estimates indicate Americans drive around 11,500 miles per year. Customers can choose a plan based on the type of vehicle they drive, ranging from hybrid cars to trucks or full-size SUVs.

  3. Home Offsets: Home emissions include daily activities such as electricity usage, heating our homes, or disposing of waste. Together these emissions make up a household's carbon footprint. Home Offset plans make green living easy by providing different options based on size and range from a 1,000 square feet apartment to a large home over 4,000 square feet.

  4. Air Travel Offsets: The air travel offset plans provide an easy way to offset emissions from air travel, and the estimates are based on total mileage, ranging from 300-mile flights up to 2,300-mile flights.

The subscriptions can be cancelled at any time with no penalty. For customers who want to purchase a specific number of carbon offsets, Green Mountain provides a custom option, where customers can select the quantity of metric tons of CO2 that they want to offset at any point in time. This option works well for companies aiming to be carbon-neutral and using offsets to help provide the “net” in their net-zero emissions goals.

Carbon offsets are an indirect emission reduction through investments in projects that reduce or avoid carbon dioxide emissions to contribute to climate stability. Customers choose carbon offsets as a mechanism to compensate for carbon impact generated by their daily activities. By Purchasing one carbon offset customers can offset one metric ton of greenhouse gas emissions.

Green Mountain sources carbon offsets using industry-leading third-party certification standards, such as the Verified Carbon StandardClimate Action Reserve and Clean Development Mechanism. As a result of offsetting, Green Mountain invests primarily in projects that capture or destroy greenhouse gases that otherwise would have been emitted, such as methane gas capture projects at landfills, destruction of ozone-depleting substances, or other projects that include reforestation and renewable energy.

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 81 billion pounds of carbon dioxide emissions. To learn more about Green Mountain, visit greenmountainenergy.com.

Fairtrade International System Announces New Funding to Help Producers Mitigate the Effects of COVID-19

Mon, 06/15/2020 - 9:36am

Fairtrade International and including its U.S. chapter, Fairtrade America, champion the rapid growth of two new funds to aid farmers and workers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic by providing immediate support as well as relief for the anticipated long-term effects. As an organization seeking to better the lives of producers in developing countries, Fairtrade has currently raised over $3.9 million in both funds including seeding more than half of this amount. The Producer Resilience Fund accepts donations from retailers, businesses, non-governmental organizations, and government agencies and has collected over $3.1 million in pledges to date. If secured, the pledges combined with the existing funds would result in $7 million in additional support to producer groups.

From Africa to Latin America to Asia, producers of heavily relied upon crops such as coffee and cocoa have faced unforeseen challenges due to COVID-19. The new Fairtrade Producer Relief Fund provides immediate support to Fairtrade certified producers to purchase masks and basic protective and medical equipment, temporarily cover wages for suspended workers, set up local food security initiatives, raise awareness of safety precautions, build emergency medical facilities, and pay for business continuity costs. Looking towards the future, the Fairtrade Producer Resilience Fund will assist with impending long-term challenges expected to impact global supply chains and trade. This Fund provides economic interventions, such as business restoration, technology-based capacity building, programs to address human rights risks, strengthening finances to tackle future risks, and advocacy -- most of which will be felt by farmers in the next harvest season.

“Fairtrade America and our international system partners work everyday to better the lives of farmers and workers by helping them earn a fair wage,” said Bryan Lew, Chief Operating Officer, Fairtrade America. “The global pandemic is putting a severe strain on these hardworking people and their families. It is our duty to help ensure their health and well being and the viability of their livelihood in the future.”

Fairtrade producers growing the products we enjoy everyday are trying to adapt to the new challenges presented by the pandemic. For example:

  • Cocoa farmers in West Africa Fairtrade are expecting an increase in cases of child labor in their communities, rooted in increased poverty. Cocoa farmers are losing income due to challenges with transporting and exporting their crops. Cocoa communities are at risk for contracting COVID-19 because of a high rate of pre-existing health conditions resulting from poverty and poor nutrition, as well as a lack of adequate healthcare. 

  • Coffee producers in Latin America face challenges with harvesting, transporting and exporting coffee beans. Wider economic downturn is expected to slow prices, which are already historically low. Prior to the pandemic, nearly 61% of coffee farmers sold their coffee at prices under the cost of sustainable production.

  • Flower producers in all origins, including Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia and Ecuador, continue to be severely impacted with widespread job losses and reduced workers employed on farms to sustain minimal activity. 

“The crisis won’t end when COVID-19 stops spreading. We’re already seeing a global economic crisis looming,” said Nygagoy Nyong’o, Executive Director of Fairtrade Africa, the producer network covering Africa and the Middle East.  “Farmers and workers are resilient and creative. This additional fund will enable them to identify opportunities or alternative business models, as well as continuing to invest in the future of their communities.”

Fairtrade America is calling on US businesses to contribute to the Producer Resilience Fund, which will be allocated to Fairtrade certified producer organizations on the frontline of the COVID-19 crisis. The funds will be managed by Fairtrade’s regional producer networks, which support African, Asian and Latin American producers on the ground. For more information, please visit http://www.fairtradeamerica.org/Impact/Covid19.

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About Fairtrade America

Fairtrade America betters the lives of farmers and workers in developing countries by inspiring businesses to implement ethical production practices and assisting shoppers in making informed purchasing decisions. Fairtrade America is the US chapter of Fairtrade International, the original and global leader in fair trade certification with over 30 years of experience working to make trade fair, with headquarters in more than 30 countries across the globe. A non-profit 501(c)3 organization, Fairtrade America is the world's largest and most recognized fair trade system—part of a global movement for change. Learn more at www.fairtradeamerica.org, and by connecting with Fairtrade America on Instagram and LinkedIn

Tetra Tech’s Craig Gianoli Discusses Designing Secure Mission Critical Facilities

Mon, 06/15/2020 - 9:36am

High Performance Buildings

Craig is the Sydney-based market sector lead for mission-critical services at Norman Disney & Young, A Tetra Tech Company (NDY), part of the Tetra Tech High Performance Buildings Group. He supports the business with his technical expertise in high-voltage networks, and fault-tolerant and renewable energy systems and microgrids.

Craig came to our team in 2012 from a networks utility business where he gathered a broad range of design and management experience in the power industry. He has held several leadership roles in our Australia-based High Performance Buildings team, including Perth electrical section manager and national power engineering manager.

Since childhood, Craig has been exploring his passion for understanding how things work. Building on an avid interest in computers and technology, he holds a Bachelor of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (Honors) alongside a Bachelor of Science from the University of Western Australia. Craig now combines both loves via a focus on data centers, which require the highest level of detail from concept to delivery. He understands that clients come to Tetra Tech for the expertise, capabilities, and staff experience in the sector.

Craig has been designing data center facilities for more than a decade, working on dozens of sites ranging from new builds to complex upgrades and voltage conversions on live data centers, including defense facilities. 

What are some of the major considerations and complexities associated with data center projects today?

Modern-day data centers or mission-critical facilities have seen a growth in energy density due to growing artificial intelligence capabilities. We’re designing projects with a high power density, which requires rethinking power distribution and pushes the limits of air-cooled solutions. In larger facilities, a major focus is on modularization of designs that allow for scale-out as demand grows without putting information technology (IT) loads at risk during these expansions. With this growth in scale, getting the site services infrastructure right is absolutely critical to achieving a successful outcome.

What we’re seeing in the defense sector is even bigger densities of power usage, as the military has far greater requirements in order to keep up with operational needs. A normal project might have elements of storage and some processing, but a defense project requires far more processing-intensive tasks, which chew up more power. Tetra Tech’s designs work to not only accommodate these needs but offer solutions that innovate and up the ante within the sector.

On recent data center projects, what innovations have excited you the most?

There are always fresh ideas on new data center projects. As an electrical engineer, the use of Isolated Parallel Bus (IP-Bus) connectivity technology to achieve Tier IV fault tolerance with minimal duplication in uninterrupted power supply (UPS) and generator plant systems is exciting as it enables us to improve both asset utilization and energy efficiency outcomes. As space is often limited, the shift to lithium ion or lithium polymer batteries for UPS systems has been a game changer, drastically reducing the spatial footprint and structural requirements for these systems.

What role does sustainability play in current data center design?

Data center usage is estimated to make up approximately 4 percent of Australian energy consumption, so it is not surprising that, with increasing power density within data centers and rising energy costs, energy costs are now the single biggest operating cost faced by mission-critical providers. As a result, over the past decade, plant solutions have been designed to operate more efficiently throughout the load range. Our recent data center designs have included the use of air-side free cooling, water-side economizers combined with higher chilled water supply temperatures, and high-efficiency UPS technologies to offer solutions with a greater focus on sustainability.

NABERS for data centers is gaining traction in Australia. NABERS energy ratings for data centers is a set of performance metrics tools used in Australia to evaluate the energy efficiency and environmental impact of networked computer facilities. Tetra Tech is proud to have worked with a major provider, NEXTDC, to achieve the first 5 Star NABERS energy ratings in Australia on two of its facilities. By comparison, LEED for Data Centers has not taken off within the Asia-Pacific region, with only three facilities certified to date.

How do clients wisely invest in critical infrastructure like data centers when the technology we use is evolving so quickly? 

While IT technology is continually changing, the rate of change for the infrastructure is much slower and far more incremental. Good data center design allows for the staged progression of infrastructure rollout to allow new electrical and thermal capacity to be brought online without disruption to the data center environment. This allows investment in the plant to be deferred until later in the data center lifecycle and reduces both maintenance overheads and capital expenditure on otherwise stranded assets, allowing the operator to procure the most efficient plant possible.

What changes have you seen in mission-critical and data center operations, and what innovations are on the horizon?

Among the most obvious changes, the scale of facilities has increased exponentially, from 10-20 megawatt (MW) to 100MW. Hyperscalers—data center providers such as Microsoft and Google that operate a new generation of large facilities in the range of 80MW to 150MW—are also creating change by pushing the thermal envelope wider in pursuit of energy savings. On the horizon are a range of innovations, including a growth in edge computing driven by latency requirements (edge computing brings computation and data storage closer to the location where it is needed to improve response times – or reduce latency – and save bandwidth). The new 5G wireless technology for cellular networks will offer faster service than its 4G predecessor, and further growth is also occurring in power density, direct liquid cooling, and analytics-driven control systems where the infrastructure responds more efficiently to suit the IT load. There is a lot coming our way, and we are ready for it.

Transforming the Logistics Sector During COVID-19

Fri, 06/12/2020 - 12:32pm

by Audrey Cheong, Managing Director, FedEx Singapore

The COVID-19 global pandemic has not only upended the global logistics sector with massive changes to operations, supply chains, regulations and manpower – it has also transformed the way we keep commerce flowing, with lasting impact on the future of the sector.

Even so, logistics companies continue to play a critical role as the COVID-19 situation unfolds. Given that most passenger flights in many parts of the world have been grounded, logistics services are now more crucial than ever, as the delivery of essential medical supplies, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), COVID-19 test kits and ventilators could be a matter of life and death.

Business efficiencies in this region and beyond have been affected, with countries and people on varying degrees of lockdown. More than ever, this is a time for our industry to rethink business models, harness the power of technology and exercise empathy to address the needs of today, and future-proof our businesses for tomorrow.

Creating Value Through Innovation

Preparing for the future should go beyond implementing Business Continuity Plans (BCPs). Digitalisation and adopting a modern suite of technologies can solve many existing challenges, including those posed by COVID-19, and reinvent operations to serve the modern consumer.

Investment into technologies including Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), and robotics can greatly enhance visibility and efficiencies in supply chains.

Tapping into data, AI and broader Supply Chain Management (SCM) technologies allows for real-time analyses to enhance operational and transactional processes. The data and insights gathered from shipments enables more informed decision-making. This is complemented with predictive intelligence which identifies patterns and gaps, and suggests efficiencies, revenue opportunities, potential problems, and competitive advantages so there is continuous improvement through a live feedback loop. Human error is also better eliminated on a day-to-day basis.

Furthermore, the integration of robotics, sensors and IoT enables more accurate forecasting, faster response times, bolstering one’s ability to recognise shipping patterns to plan for risk, cost savings towards a low-to-zero waste operation – all key factors for supply chain intelligence. In times of crisis, having sustainable and reliable tools ensures that companies can further customise solutions to serve urgent needs while effectively fulfilling business needs of existing customers.

Sensitive cold chain deliveries are also a key need for essential medical inventories, and is a long-term area of focus for us. An example is the implementation of “smart” medical inventory cabinets that come with sensors to monitor variables like shipment location and conditions of the contents, to accurately indicate any deviation from the ideal environment such as temperature, humidity, light exposure and shock events. SenseAware, a FedEx innovation is a sensory device that travels with a shipment, enabling round-the-clock updates on a delivery package. In times like these, such innovations have become increasingly pertinent in ensuring the highest standards of delivery and non-wastage.

This pandemic also calls for out-of-the-box, customer-centric solutions, and has sped up adoption of services including contactless deliveries across the globe. With safety and wellbeing of customers and beneficiaries as priority, this is one way FedEx and our industry has adapted and innovated. May such fresh ideas and solutions continue to drive our industry forward.

Strategic Collaborations in Times of Need

Overcoming the challenges from COVID-19 is not something any company can do alone. Maintaining the logistics network and building strategic relationships are important aspects that should never be neglected – with or without the pandemic.

Connections, experience, and in-market relations are crucial aspects of being a logistics provider offering essential services. These factors eventually determine how efficiently and seamlessly shipments move. Customers also need to be well-informed of their shipments, in-line with the most updated import and export restrictions with the current pandemic.

Close cooperation with local regulatory authorities has seen FedEx Singapore, as South Pacific hub, facilitate smooth export clearance of an increased volume of intra and inter-region medical equipment shipments.

Serving Businesses and the Community, with Empathy

Further to implementing health and safety precautions to protect both employees and the wider community, logistics businesses need to serve with empathy.
At a time where tensions are high and pressure is great, we must not forget that our team members are the ones braving the odds to deliver critical supplies.
At FedEx, our employees have stepped up even more to ensure that crucial medical units reach our customers.

For the world to do better, the businesses and communities that make up our region should not be neglected. Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) comprise a crucial segment that has been affected by COVID-19. In ASEAN, they make up between 88% and 99% of establishments[1]. With logistics being the lifeblood of most businesses, our duty to continue serving SMEs is essential.

Finally, empathy is required to go the extra mile in serving our medical frontline, expediting deliveries, and understanding the needs of our customers in this field. With empathy for the people, businesses and communities we serve, the possibilities for the logistics sector to make a difference are endless.

The Future Can Start Now

There has not been a better time to push the boundaries of what the logistics industry can do for the world. With people and communities in need of medical and food supplies, we need to come together to create robust supply chains and agile, customer-focused logistics operations capable of enduring shocks from external factors, and furthermore, continue to thrive by adapting to new circumstances to serve communities in need. All of this done with a spirit of empathy and understanding, so that we can play our part to move the world forward.

***
https://asean.org/asean-economic-community/sectoral-bodies-under-the-purview-of-aem/micro-small-and-medium-enterprises/overview/

3 Innovative Ways Johnson & Johnson Proudly Supports the LGBTQ+ Community

Fri, 06/12/2020 - 12:32pm

Originally published on jnj.com

Fifty years ago this month, the first LGBTQ Pride marches took place in cities across the United States to commemorate the anniversary of the Stonewall riots in New York City, giving rise to what’s now known as LGBTQ Pride Month, which is celebrated each June in support of equal rights for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer citizens.

And for more than 25 years, Johnson & Johnson has been a leader in supporting the LGBTQ+ community through its employee policies, business practices and public advocacy.

“To serve the healthcare needs of people everywhere, we need diverse perspectives and viewpoints," says Ashley McEvoy, Worldwide Chairman, Medical Devices, Johnson & Johnson and Executive Sponsor of the Open&Out employee resource group for LGBTQ+ employees and allies. "The values of diversity, fairness and equality are central to who we are at Johnson & Johnson. I’m proud to be an ally for our LGBTQ+ colleagues to make sure all employees can be their authentic selves and feel safe and supported at work. Every voice matters—and the more voices who speak up for diversity and speak out against discrimination, the more inclusive our culture becomes. While the COVID-19 pandemic will prevent us from celebrating Pride Month together in person, we are always together in our support for the LGBTQ+ community.”

Read on to learn about some of the pivotal ways Johnson & Johnson has been an ally and leader for the LGBTQ+ community.

1. Open&Out Employee Resource Group

Johnson & Johnson has more than 130,000 employees across the world, and 12 Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) that help unite colleagues through their shared interests, identities, affinities and experiences.

Open&Out is the fastest-growing ERG at the company, with more than 3,400 LGBTQ+ employee and ally members across 80+ chapters around the world.

The group’s goal: help foster an inclusive work environment where all employees feel safe, heard and embraced.

But beyond that, Open&Out’s members are crucial sources of new and diverse ideas that the company can use to build a stronger community overall—and even create better business outcomes.

“When we can be our authentic selves in the workplace, we have greater energy and enthusiasm and focus in the work we do,” explains Zachary Langway, Public Affairs Leader, Consumer Health North America, Johnson & Johnson, and the communications lead for Open&Out. “Seeing so many campuses raise rainbow Pride flags and celebrate Pride virtually reminds me every day that I matter and I belong.”

Recent innovative initiatives the group has sponsored include “Why It Still Matters,” which engaged allies in a candid dialogue on the best ways to help promote equality for LGBTQ+ colleagues and friends. Open&Out has also sponsored global recruiting events to help drive greater diversity across the company worldwide.

"When I was an intern at Johnson & Johnson, applying for other jobs, I would ask about affinity groups like Open&Out, and many companies didn't have any," says Andrew Whitten, now an IT Product Analyst for Procurement at Johnson & Johnson and co-lead for the corporate chapter of Open&Out. "What's kept me at the company is the mindset that learning about diverse backgrounds and groups is important—and the strong leadership support for that."

2. Johnson & Johnson Care With Pride

This ambitious volunteer initiative, now in its ninth year, brings together more than 10 Johnson & Johnson brands and 2,000 employees to champion love, equality and care for all people within the LGBTQ+ community.

Care With Pride is the corporate sponsor for more than 40 Pride parades and events across the globe. Earlier this month, Care With Pride sponsored a Virtual Pride Kickoff to take the place of physical parades that couldn't go on as planned during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2019, Johnson & Johnson also began selling OGX and Listerine products with special Pride-themed packaging in Target and Walmart stores. This year, Neutrogena products join the themed line (some shown at right), as do retail partners Amazon, Ulta, Walgreens, Kroger and Giant.

But Care With Pride’s most important work is partnering with LGBTQ+ nonprofits to make a difference, says Care With Pride co-lead Reed Harris, Senior Customer Development Manager, Vogue International, Johnson & Johnson Consumer Health. To date, the campaign has raised more than $1 million dollars for its nonprofit partners, which, over the years, have included PFLAGTrevor Project and GLAAD.

One of this year’s exclusive beneficiary partners is Family Equality, whose mission is to advance legal and lived equality for LGBTQ+ families and for people who wish to form them.

“They are doing very meaningful, powerful work,” Harris says. “The organization is on the smaller side, so our donation has the potential to really make an impact.”

Care With Pride is proud to serve as title sponsor of Family Equality Family Week, the largest gathering of LGBTQ+ families in the world, held annually in Provincetown, Massachusetts. While this year’s event was canceled in light of COVID-19, Care With Pride is creating 500+ Family Week Care Packages for families who were planning to attend. The packages will include Johnson & Johnson Pride-themed products, puzzles, coloring books, games and food from local Provincetown retailers for families to enjoy in the safety of their own homes.

“LGBTQ families rely on this trip as a safe and fun event,” Harris says. “Hopefully this is a little way to bring enjoyment into their lives during our new normal.”

3. Inclusive Johnson & Johnson Benefits

Recognizing the equality of all forms of families has long been a priority for Johnson & Johnson, dating back to when the company began granting domestic-partner benefits nearly 20 years ago.

Today, the company offers assistance with fertility treatments, adoption and surrogacy to heterosexual and same-sex spouses alike.

In the U.S., the company offers $35,000 in financial assistance for fertility treatments. Employees who adopt can receive $20,000 in reimbursement benefits per child, as can those who use surrogacy assistance.

And any new parent—maternal or paternal, adoptive or surrogacy-assisted—can take advantage of eight weeks of paid leave that can be used at any time during the first year of a new child’s arrival into a family.

Johnson & Johnson also offers health insurance benefits for transgendered employees, including for transition surgery. There’s even an official company process that encompasses support from mentors across the company and a “trans liaison,” a dedicated person within the organization who can help you along the way.

“Diversity and inclusion is at the heart of our culture and policies that enable all our people to feel valued and heard," says Kristen Mulholland, Head of Human Resources, Global Total Rewards, Johnson & Johnson. "We have been honored for more than 15 years by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation as the Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality for our policies, such as transgender-inclusive health insurance coverage and same-sex partner benefits. We have an essential responsibility to provide equal opportunities and treatment, create a deep sense of belonging and allow our people to be themselves, so they can perform their best and bring fresh perspectives to deliver innovative healthcare solutions to patients, consumers and customers around the world.”

Points of Light Announces Co-Chairs for the Second Annual Celebration of The George H.W. Bush Points of Light Awards

Fri, 06/12/2020 - 12:32pm

Points of Light, a global nonprofit dedicated to accelerating people-powered change, today announced the 2020 co-chairs for the second annual celebration of The George H.W. Bush Points of Light Awards. The 2020 co-chairs are Barbara Bush and Craig Coyne, Jenna Bush Hager and Henry Hager, and Wendy Stapleton.

The George H.W. Bush Points of Light Awards is the signature celebration that supports the mission and vision of Points of Light. The Awards will honor outstanding individuals advancing solutions in ways that demonstrate the extraordinary traits of our 41st president: integrity, empathy, respect, optimism, conviction in the face of opposition, and belief in the power of the human spirit to create positive change.

“We greatly appreciate the leadership of Barbara, Craig, Jenna, Henry and Wendy as we prepare for the second annual celebration of The George H.W. Bush Points of Light Awards,” said Natalye Paquin, president and CEO of Points of Light. “Their shared commitment to honoring the legacy of our 41st president and founder will help us shine a light on the inspiring individuals who create positive change in communities around the world.”

Barbara Bush is co-founder and board chair of Global Health Corps, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to mobilize a diverse community of leaders to build the movement for global health equity.

Jenna Bush Hager is co-host of NBC TODAY with Hoda & Jenna, and the founding chair of UNICEF Next Generation, an initiative dedicated to motivating younger generations to help save and improve children’s lives around the world.

Wendy Stapleton is co-founder and chairman of the board of the Greenwich International Film Festival. She also serves as a member of UNICEF Next Generation’s Founders Circle and was formerly the chair of the organization’s Greenwich chapter.

Presidents George W. Bush, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama served as honorary co-chairs of the Inaugural Awards Gala in 2019. They were joined by Lauren Bush Lauren, granddaughter of President Bush and founder and CEO of FEED, and Ray Chambers, founding chairman of Points of Light Foundation, who served as co-chairs.

Points of Light activates millions of volunteers annually who contribute tens of millions of hours of service through the Points of Light Global Network. Every contribution to Points of Light and to The George H.W. Bush Points of Light Awards supports the organization’s general mission to inspire, equip and mobilize people to take action that lifts individuals and changes communities. This includes working in partnership with organizations and individuals to build a society where it is easy to do good and impossible to sit on the sidelines. We are defining a new kind of civic engagement for the 21st century, one that calls on people to give their time, talents, voice and resources to build a brighter future for all.

For more information about livestream plans for the 2020 George H.W. Bush Points of Light Awards Celebration, please visit pointsoflight.org/bushawards.

About Points of Light

Points of Light is a global nonprofit organization that inspires, equips and mobilizes millions of people to take action that changes the world. We envision a world in which every individual discovers the power to make a difference, creating healthy communities in vibrant, participatory societies. Through affiliates in 200 cities across 37 countries, and in partnership with thousands of nonprofits and corporations, Points of Light engages 5 million volunteers in 14 million hours of service each year. We bring the power of people to bear where it’s needed most. For more information, visit pointsoflight.org.

Just Launched: Reuters Events Transform Europe Virtual Series

Fri, 06/12/2020 - 9:32am

Ethical Corporation are very excited to announce the first online conference in the Reuters Events Transform Europe Virtual Series – Transform: Sustainable Procurement & Circularity [7-8th July 2020].
 
As we begin to adapt to the impacts of Covid-19 pandemic, and we take stock of the ongoing climate emergency, deepening social inequalities and biodiversity loss, business must undergo a transformation to help deliver a sustainable, circular and low-carbon future for us all.
 
This is why, between 7-8th July, Ethical Corporation by Reuters Events is bringing you two days of live online broadcasts filled with exclusive interviews, c-suite led panel discussions, and business-critical case studies from CEOs, CSOs, CPOs, heads of sustainability, circularity and procurement, NGOs and government representatives. They will be sharing their latest insights and tangible strategies into how they are delivering the required transformation of business and help you and your business lead the ‘decade of action’ through sustainable procurement practices and the implementation of circularity.

Click here to register for this FREE event here
 
Some of the confirmed thought leaders already include:

  • Katharina Stenholm, Chief Procurement Officer, Danone

  • Marc Engel, Chief Supply Chain Officer, Unilever

  • Dan Bartel, Chief Procurement Officer, Schneider Electric

  • Regine Lucas, Chief Procurement Officer, L’Oréal      

  • Nigel Stansfield, President EMEA, Interface

  • Kęsţutis Sadauskas, Director of Circularity & Green Growth, EU Commission

  • Sharan Burrow, General Secretary, International Trade Union Confederation

  • Marco Van Der Ree, Chief Development Officer, GRI

  • +  leaders from the likes of Ellen Macarthur Foundation, Mars, Coca Cola and PepsiCo and more!

Click here to register for this FREE event here
 
We do have a very limited number of exhibiting and sponsored workshops and session spaces available for this event. If you would like to join our Transform Virtual Series, have an elevated presence and get your name, product or service in front of 6,000+ sustainability, procurement and supply chain professionals then please do reply to this email or contact my colleague matthew.buckingham@ethicalcorp.com
 
Transform: Sustainable Procurement & Circularity [7-8th July 2020] is part of the Reuters Events Transform Europe Virtual Series, which will be hosting three business-critical free-to-attend virtual events throughout the year that will provide practical ideas, insights into the latest available technologies, and networking opportunities to help business deliver a new blueprint fit for the 21st Century. See below for the dates and themes:

  • Transform: Sustainable Procurement & Circularity – 7-8th July

  • Transform: Natural Capital & Biodiversity Week – 24-28th August

  • Transform: Energy & Carbon – 28-29th September 

Check out the full, comprehensive virtual offering here, all completely free to access with just one sign-up
 
I hope you can join us on our transformational journey.
 
Best regards,
Alexia Croft
Ethical Corporation – Project Director
Reuters Events
+44 (0) 20 8078 6978 

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Safety Month: Expect the Unexpected

Fri, 06/12/2020 - 9:32am

Health & Safety

This year will forever be known as the year of the COVID-19 pandemic. Since the beginning of 2020, many of us have had to evaluate our safety and security and that of our families, employees, and clients due to this virus. Facing our vulnerability can be difficult for those who may not have considered the unexpected challenges an emergency like this can pose. Everyone can become less vulnerable to disasters by becoming better prepared to handle them. Emergency preparedness may seem difficult or time consuming, but with a little help from agencies like the Red Cross (Red Cross USRed Cross CARed Cross UKRed Cross AUSRed Cross ICRC) it’s actually easy to achieve. Below are some simple and useful tips everyone can do.

Be Informed

Understand which disasters are likely to occur in your area and what you must know to stay safe. Disasters like major snowstorms to wildfires can range by country and region, while some disasters like the COVID-19 pandemic can impact all of us. One easy way to gain knowledge is to download and activate one or all of the Red Cross’s Emergency Apps, which are available for cell phones and Alexa devices through the Apple or Google App stores.

Obtain Emergency Supplies

Gather the essential supplies to put in your survival kit. Survival kits are more than just basic food and water, they are designed to help cover you for the first 72 hours after disaster strikes. Kits should include necessities like power supplies, hygiene products, communication tools, emergency contact information, medical and financial documents, and things important to you, such as family photos. Purchasing a ready-made supply kit is a quick and effective way to getting much closer to being prepared. Supply kits will vary by location and are best obtained from your local Red Cross or supply store. Creating a personalized kit will enable you to factor in your specific circumstances and needs. To assist you in preparing your survival kit, review the linked emergency preparedness checklist.

Make a Plan

Ensure you can effectively respond in case of an emergency. Planning to emergency proof your home takes thought and practice. Basic, everyday steps help keep everyone prepared. Teach each household member how and when to turn off water, gas, oil, and electricity.  Make sure your residence has enough smoke and carbon monoxide detectors with up-to-date batteries and a fire extinguisher. Also, protect yourself by maintaining adequate insurance on your living space, personal belongings, and vehicle. If you have children living with you, make sure they know their last name, address, and phone number.

Learn CPR and First Aid

Emergencies can happen anywhere and at any time and can happen to those closest to you. Taking the time to learn lifesaving skills is the best gift you could give to someone else. Contact your local Red Cross organization for available class times.

Expect the unexpected and take the time to plan for yourself and others. You may not be able to keep emergencies from happening, but you can control how you prepare for them.

Sowing Doubt and Undermining Science

Thu, 06/11/2020 - 3:31pm

Originally published on erb.umich.edu

People want to rely on scientific evidence in countless different contexts. As one professor put it, “Science has ‘epistemic authority,’ meaning it is the best method humans have available to understand what is true about the world.” So science should be able to speak for itself. But people with a vested interest in undermining science are working behind the scenes to obscure it.

Scientific findings about climate change are a common target. To diminish the urgency of responding to climate change, government, corporate and other actors have found ways to discredit and silence scientists and their findings. 

For example, the New York Times reported in March that an official at the Interior Department, Indur Goklany, inserted misleading language into at least nine of the agency’s scientific reports. This language asserted that there is a lack of consensus among scientists that the Earth is warming, and that increasing carbon dioxide offers benefits: “Warming and increased carbon dioxide may increase plant water use efficiency, lengthen the agricultural growing season. . . .” 

As the New York Times explained, “Both assertions misrepresent the scientific consensus that, overall, climate change will result in severe disruptions to global agriculture and significant reductions in crop yields.”

The Trump administration has distorted or hidden science in other contexts, from removing information about climate change from several government reports and websites, to rejecting EPA scientists’ work linking trichloroethylene to fetal heart defects.

By diminishing the scientific findings of these government agencies’ own scientists, the people manipulating the science manage to craft an alternative narrative. 

It’s no secret that corporate  interests often want to promote such alternative narratives. It’s common for corporations to affect public policy through campaign contributions and lobbying. But they also do so through an approach that has been largely overlooked: intentionally creating doubt among policy-makers and the public about the need for policy action. Recent research from Thomas Lyon and Mireille Chiroleu-Assouline sheds light on the ways companies deploy strategies to create doubt. (See “Merchants of Doubt: Corporate Political Action When NGO Credibility Is Uncertain,” published in the Journal of Economics & Management Strategy.)

Policy-makers often rely on information from science-based nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) to help them make decisions. One way companies create doubt is by directly questioning the credibility of scientists and science-based NGOs, accusing them of a political bias that makes them untrustworthy. Another way is by funding think tanks to sow confusion, argue Lyon and Chiroleu-Assouline. 

Think tanks have proliferated in the past 20 years, but their impact on policy has not received the study it deserves, Lyon and Chiroleu-Assouline say. Although some think tanks are serious research-based organizations staffed by scholars with strong credentials, others put forth a hazy mixture of facts and ideology. They present their own “experts,” often with weak credentials, who provide a set of alternative assertions that can easily confuse citizens and policy-makers. 

In one particularly egregious example, ExxonMobil funded a TV ad created by the Competitive Enterprise Institute that presented gauzy scenes of nature and ended with the punch line: “CO2: they call it pollution, we call it life.”

Goklany, the DOI official, contributed to a Competitive Enterprise Institute film called “Policy Peril: Why Global Warming Policies Are More Dangerous Than Global Warming Itself.” The New York Times report noted that Goklany has also written papers for and participated in events hosted by other think tanks, including the Heartland Institute, that have spread doubt about climate change. 

In 2017, the Heartland Institute reportedly sent more than 25,000 copies of its book “Why Scientists Disagree About Climate Change,” along with an accompanying DVD, to science teachers across the country. It planned to send more than 200,000 copies. 

Such think tanks aim to influence people’s perceptions of climate change—from third graders to members of Congress. And a think tank’s political bias might be unclear. 

Even though a think tank may be well known to lean in a certain political direction, the extent of that political bias may be difficult for policy-makers to discern, Lyon and Chiroleu-Assouline say. A think tank can obscure its political bias, in part through employing a mix of “fellows” and other employees that span the spectrum from moderate to extreme.

“Historical research has begun to reveal the concerted efforts of groups such as the Mont Pelerin Society, funded by wealthy corporate backers, to create a world-wide family of ‘free-market’ think tanks,” Lyon said. These groups conclude that government action is undesirable, “and they have real impact: Many politicians propose bills that come word-for-word from such groups,” he said.

The public can find out about this behind-the-scenes manipulation only when someone exposes it. With heightened scrutiny of the ways government officials are downplaying and erasing scientific findings, will think tanks be able to keep operating under the radar? If they come under closer scrutiny, corporations might think twice about exerting influence through them. 

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