Thursday 31st July 2014                 Change text size:

richard branson by Jeff Rizzo via flickr

Sir Richard Branson invests in ‘anti-bank’ start-up TransferWise

Financial technology business TransferWise has successfully attracted $25m (£14m) in fundraising from both sides of the Atlantic – as well as support from a number of high-profile investors. The firm which was set up in 2011, is an increasingly popular alternative money transferring system that allows currency to be...


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Trillion Fund wind crowdfunding opportunity offers investors 7.5% return

Investors could achieve a 7.5% return on their investment whilst supporting renewable energy in a new crowdfunding opportunity. Trillion Fund will launch on Thursday the first offing on its new platform, which allows investors to support projects in just a few minutes. E2Energy, a joint venture between wind turbine...


shannonpatrick17 via flickr

Canadian tar sands oil pipeline is approved, despite protests

The 1,177-km (731-mile) Northern Gateway pipeline project, which will carry tar sands oil from Alberta to the Pacific coast in Canada, has been approved by the Canadian government, despite strong opposition from scientists, environmentalists and indigenous communities along the route. Canada’s prime minsiter Stephen Harper has often said that...


Photo: Charity Bank

Leading social enterprises recognised at Charity Bank Impact Awards 2014

In its annual Impact Awards, Charity Bank, the bank that exclusively serves the social economy, has recognised three of its clients for their outstanding positive impact. Emmaus Brighton and Hove, a charity that offers volunteer work and accommodation, and a sense of community to the formerly homeless, won the award...


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Government rejects MPs’ greener vision for HS2 rail project

The government has rejected calls from MPs to better protect the environment during the construction of the controversial HS2 rail project. In April, the environmental audit committee urged the government to provide greater “environmental compensation” for sites of natural value and areas of ancient woodland destroyed by the line....


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Investors welcome US act to combat slavery and human trafficking

Investors have commended US congresswoman Carolyn Maloney after she introduced the Business Supply Chain Transparency on Trafficking and Slavery Act 2014, amid increasing investor concern around slavery. The act requires companies with over $100m (£59m) in global assets to publicly disclose any measures to prevent human trafficking, slavery and...


Photo: www.joiseyshowaa.com via Flickr

Leonardo DiCaprio donates $7m to help fight oceans crisis

Leonardo DiCaprio has said his philanthropic foundation will be donating $7m (£4.1m) over the next two years to help overcome the “systematic devastation” of the world’s oceans and fisheries. At an event in the US, the Hollywood star expressed concern about overfishing and the degradation of the Great Barrier...


solar sky by Patrick Moore via freeimages

Elon Musk-backed SolarCity to build huge solar panel plant in New York

SolarCity, the rooftop solar panel business backed by technology entrepreneur Elon Musk, has announced plans to expand its production to 1,000 megawatts (MW) a year in one of the world’s largest solar manufacturing plants. On Tuesday, the firm unveiled plans to buy Silevo, a solar panel technology business, for...


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Santander and Funding Circle partnership to boost alternative finance

Santander has agreed to a referral relationship with Funding Circle, the first of its kind in the UK, suggesting that alternative methods of finance are gaining ground and becoming more mainstream. Peer-to-peer lending is a method of debt lending that allows individuals to borrow and lend money without using...


Photo: thewritingzone via Flickr

New report lays down climate change challenge to energy sector

The impacts of climate change, such as floods and droughts, and its subsequent policy responses, will pose significant challenges to an energy sector that must also rapidly decarbonise, a new report has warned.  The briefing, published by the World Energy Council (WEC), Cambridge University and the European Climate Foundation...


Eastop via Free Images

Local authority pension funds commit £152m to social impact investment

Five of the largest local authority pension funds have announced a commitment of £152m to the UK social impact investment market. In May last year, the Investing4Growth (I4G) initiative was established, in association with Pensions & Investment Research Consultants (PIRC). The initiative will see the five funds seek investments...


Britt Reints via flickr

Beach and ski resorts at risk, as report outlines climate change’s impact on tourism

The tourism industry will be severely hit by the impacts of climate change, such as sea level rise, acidifying oceans, the loss of biodiversity and global temperature increases, according to new research that draws on the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change(IPCC) report. The University of Cambridge Institute for...


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Tesco faces calls from investor charity to pay the living wage

Responsible investment charity ShareAction is calling on Tesco, the UK’s biggest private sector employer, to pay the living wage. The issue has been moving up the agenda for investors who argue a living wage helps achieve “longevity and productivity” in business operations. The living wage, currently set at £8.80...


USFWS - Pacific Region via flickr

Obama plans vast expansion of Pacific marine protected area

US president Barack Obama has promised to increase efforts to tackle illegal fishing and extend the existing marine protected area between Hawaii and American Samoa. The Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument, as the protected zone is known, already spans nearly 200,000 sq km (77,020 square miles). But under...


Photo: Phault via Flickr

Giant 240-turbine UK wind farm could become world’s largest

The UK government has approved plans for what may become the largest offshore wind farm in the world, a 240-turbine project off the coast of Suffolk. The project, a joint venture from ScottishPower Renewables and Vattenfall, would generate enough electricity to power around 820,000 homes. It is also anticipated...


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