Friday 18th April 2014                 Change text size:

arctic methane by NASA Earth Observatory via Flickr

Global warming could be accelerated by thawing Arctic permafrost

Scientists have found new evidence that thawing Arctic permafrost is releasing greenhouse gases into the atmosphere through plants, warning that this could accelerate global warming. Scientists already know that polar permafrost – soil that is frozen all year round – is increasingly thawing and decomposing because of climate change....


Labour Behind the Label via Flickr

New guidelines say modern slavery is ‘severe but solvable’

Sedex, the membership organisation for transparent supply chains, has released the findings from a new study that looked into the risks and solutions behind forced labour and human trafficking – also referred to as ‘modern slavery’. Partnering with NGO Verité, the organisation said that many workers – especially immigrants...


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Investors increasingly using shareholder power to create change, says McKinsey

Activist investors are targeting more companies and benefitting as a result, analysis from consulting firm McKinsey has found. If handled correctly, shareholder activism can also improve the company targeted in the long-term. According to the research, the US-listed companies that activists targeted in 2013 were worth, on average, $10...


Attilio Lombardo via Free Images

Unhappy ‘big six’ customers flock to Good Energy, whose profits see sharp rise

Renewable energy supplier Good Energy has revealed 2013 saw its customer base increase by 32% and its pre-tax profits more than double to £3.3m in 2013, as a result of dissatisfied ‘big six’ customers switching. The company’s revenue grew by 43% while the pre-tax profit figure represents a 136%...


Photo: dr_relling via flickr

Dengue fever outbreak ‘imminent’ in Europe because of climate change

The risk of dengue fever spreading across Europe is now imminent because of rising temperatures caused by climate change, scientists have warned. Dengue fever is a viral infection carried by mosquitoes that is usually found in tropical and sub-tropical climates. In most cases, it causes a flu-like illness and...


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Social enterprises given investment and mentor opportunity

Early stage social enterprises have the opportunity to receive part of a £500,000 investment to take their venture to the next level and increase the social impact they are having. In partnership with Barclays, Big Issue Invest – the social investment arm of the Big Issue magazine – has...


Photo: Alex Goodey via Flickr

Labour announces devolved cities spending plan

The Labour party has pledged that if it wins the next general election, it will provide a funding boost to councils and give cities more autonomy, in a bid to close the gap between London and the rest of the country. In a speech in Birmingham on Tuesday, party...


See-ming Lee via flickr

Harvard to sign Principles for Responsible Investment and set up $20m climate fund

The president of Harvard University has announced its intention to fund projects that will help improve sustainability and tackle climate change – a year after it was revealed that the school would not be divesting from fossil fuels. Drew Faust announced the creation of a Climate Change Solutions Fund...


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Co-op Bank delays annual results while it finalises accounts

The Co-operative Bank has said it will miss its already delayed deadline for publishing its annual report and accounts. The news follows the bank seeking further funding after discovering another hole in its balance sheet last month. The Co-op’s annual results should have been published no later than today....


Sean Winters via Flickr

UK and northern Europe among worst EU regions for honeybee deaths

The UK has one of the highest mortality rates in honeybee colonies in the EU, with 29% dying in the winter of 2012/13, according to a comprehensive study by the European commission. The study, called Epilobee, analysed 32,000 bee colonies across 17 EU states, for the year 2012 to...


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Hampshire solar co-operative reaches £1m milestone

A community-owned solar project seeking to raise nearly £2.5m has reached the £1m milestone. The money raised will build a solar farm on the site of a restored gravel pit at Lower Pennington, Hampshire. The West Solent Solar Co-operative, which owns and will run the project, gives investors the...


Photo: M M via flickr

Alquity launches three global sustainable investment funds

Sustainable investment specialist Alquity Investment Management has announced the launch of three new funds, expanding its reach from Africa to Latin America, Asia and the Indian subcontinent. The firm says that the Luxembourg-domiciled UCITs IV funds will adhere to the values at the heart of Alquity’s investment model: “attractive returns,...


visual_k via flickr

Renewable energy investment drops as technology becomes cheaper

A new report has said that clean energy accounted for 44% of newly-installed electricity generating capacity in 2013, but less was invested in renewables due to falling costs and policy uncertainty. The 2014 Global Trends In Renewable Energy Investment report says that despite a remarkable increase in renewable energy...


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Brain region linked with gambling addiction identified by scientists

Scientists from the University of Cambridge believe they have identified the region of the brain that leads to problem gambling. The research could change the way gambling addicts are treated. The study found that brain damage affecting the insula – an area of the brain with a key role...


Monica McGivern via flickr

Businesses call for stronger policy to avoid ‘trillion tonne’ carbon milestone

A coalition of global businesses has called on world leaders to prevent a trillion tonnes of carbon from entering the atmosphere, by promoting clear low-carbon policies. The Trillion Tonne Communiqué, a coalition of 70 companies including Mars, Unilever, Adidas and EDF, and co-ordinated by the Prince of Wales’s Corporate...


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