Sunday 20th April 2014                 Change text size:

china water bottle by bd 914 via Flickr

Drinking water in Chinese city contaminated by cancer-causing chemical

Residents in Lanzhou, China, have flocked to supermarkets in a desperate bid to buy bottled water, after authorities warned the city’s drinking water contained high levels of a cancer-causing chemical. It on Friday that the drinking water from Lanzhou’s tap supply contained 20 times national levels of benzene.  Authorities have...


weather satellite by NASA Goddard Photo and Video

Airbus wins European weather satellite contract

Aeronautical firm Airbus has won a contract to build Europe’s next generation of satellites, which it hopes will improve forecasts of major storms and extreme weather events. The polar orbiting satellites will gather information using advanced sensors to build profiles of atmospheric conditions that will give forecasters a more...


Shalom Tesciuba via flickr

600,000 people switch current accounts using new service

Over 600,000 UK current account customers have changed providers in the first six months of the new Current Account Switch Service, according to new statistics. The Payments Council, which oversees the service, says that 609,300 customers switched between October 1 and March 31 – a 14% year-on-year increase.  The...


Photo: Unity Trust

Social bank Unity Trust announces ‘positive’ 8% growth for 2013

Unity Trust, a specialist bank for civil society, social enterprises, councils and trade unions, has reported an 8% growth in total assets and a considerable increase in profits in its full-year financial results for 2013. The bank’s assets grew to £717.5m last year, while pre-tax profits increased from £400,000...


Daniel Godfrey H&S 2

ABI investment arm merges with IMA to create ‘single, coherent’ voice

The boards of the Association of British Insurers (ABI) and the Investment Management Association (IMA) have agreed in principle to merge their investment activities, the organisations have confirmed. The merger will include the ABI’s Institutional Voting Information Service (IVIS), which provides advice for fund managers on how to exercise...


Lime Tree in Fields

EY survey: majority of institutional investors considering sustainability

Almost nine out of 10 institutional investors say that non-financial performance information plays a pivotal role in at least some of their investments, according to a new report from consultancy firm EY. However, many are relying on personal judgement rather than having a process in place. EY’s global survey...


Solar Panels on the National Marine Aquarium, Plymouth

Plymouth solar co-op raises £400,000 investment in five weeks

A community solar project launched in March in Plymouth has revealed it has raised £400,000 in just five weeks, meaning it can go ahead with plans to install free solar panels on schools and community buildings. The project was launched by Plymouth Energy Community (PEC) with an aim to...


thewritingzone via flickr

IPCC report proves fossil fuel investors are ‘wrecking our future’

A forthcoming UN report will say there is still time to prevent runaway climate change, but only if investment is rapidly shifted away from fossil fuels and towards renewable energy, campaigners have said. Due for publication on Sunday after a week of deliberations, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s...


Port of San Diego via flickr

Desmond Tutu: divest from fossil fuels firms in ‘apartheid-style’ boycott

Eminent bishop and Nobel peace prize winner Desmond Tutu has called on businesses to cut ties with the fossil fuels industry, in the same way as they did with South African companies during apartheid. Writing in the Guardian, Tutu said that there were many ways people can raise their...


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Co-op Bank reveals £1.3bn loss for 2013

Following a troubled year, the Co-operative Bank has posted a loss of £1.3 billion for 2013 and has said it does not expect to make a profit for several years. The bank apologised to customers and has confirmed it will withhold payments to former executives. The bank had delayed...


Madeleine Holland via flickr

Harvard academics rally for ‘ethically responsible’ fossil fuels divestment

Ninety-three professors from Harvard University have signed an open letter that labels its president’s attitude towards climate change as “contradictory” and argues that divesting from fossil fuels is an act of “ethical responsibility”. The letter comes after president Drew Faust announced a new climate strategy for the university and...


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Eric Pickles faces criticism after extending wind farm power

Communities secretary Eric Pickles has extended the period in which he can block wind farm proposals for a further year. The industry has reacted angrily to the extension, with trade association RenewableUK describing the changes as a “costly mistake” and “anti-business”. The announcement means that Pickles can take the...


solar impulse by Melissa_bel via Flickr

Solar powered plane plans around the world flight

A new solar powered aircraft, the Solar Impulse 2, will attempt to fly around the world next year without any fuel. The plans will see the plane fly for five consecutive days in March 2015. The plane gathers all the energy it needs to power the engines and recharge...


shirokazan via Flickr

Air pollution ‘public health risk’, warns PHE

Figures by Public Health England (PHE) have revealed that the richest areas in London and Southeast of the country have the worst air quality and warned that pollution contributes to around 29,000 deaths in the UK each year, making it “the biggest public health risk after smoking”. The report...


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European Commission announces proposals to encourage shareholder engagement

The European Commission has announced proposals to strengthen shareholder engagement and introduce a ‘say on pay’ for Europe’s largest companies. The changes aim to improve sustainability and long-term thinking. The proposals would affect around 10,000 companies listed on European stock exchanges. The package includes revisions to the Shareholders Rights...


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