Essential facts and eye-opening information for companies and consumers by Cara Bouwer.
- In mid-2014, global brand management company Interbrand named its Best Global Green Brands. Top of the list was car-maker Ford, which has held the top position since the report launched in 2011. The rest of the top five was also static, comprising Toyota, Honda, Nissan and Panasonic.
- PricewaterhouseCoopers’ Retailing 2015: New Frontiers report notes that: “Consumers are increasingly proactive in their purchase decisions, and selective about with whom they want to do business. Additionally, consumers will increase their focus on purchasing products from socially responsible and ‘green-friendly’ manufacturers and retailers.”
- German sportswear manufacturer Adidas has partnered with the Parley for the Oceans initiative, which is trying clean up the world’s oceans by developing materials made from marine plastic waste, reports Reuters news agency. Adidas also announced in April 2015 that it would phase out the use of plastic bags at its 2 900 stores around the world.
- In May, South Africa-born Elon Musk, the founder of Tesla, unveiled a series of batteries to allow homes and businesses to store renewable energy. The Powerwall system is due to be available in the United States later this year.
- The Bloomberg New Energy Finance report notes that, by 2030, renewable energy sources will account for more than 60% of new generation capacity and 65% of new power investments.
- According to the latest United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) report, spend on green renewable energy investments surged 17% in 2014, to US$270 billion. The biggest investments took place in China (US$83.3 billion), the United States (US$38.3 billion) and Japan (US$35.7 billion).
- The Fairtrade Foundation, which sets the internationally recognised Fairtrade ethical certification standards, uses funds from the sales of its coffee to support 1.5 million coffee-bean farmers and workers across 1 210 certified producers in more than 70 countries.
- In April 2015, Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations secretary-general, told a World Bank and International Monetary Fund meeting on climate change that collaboration and bold leadership from both the private and public sectors were needed to progress on climate change at this “enormous opportunity to chart a new path”.
- According to the UNEP, the use of plastic in the consumer goods industry results in marine pollution leading to a measure of environmental damage to the tune of some US$13 billion a year.
- Chinese and Kenyan investors launched a new technology transfer and training centre in Nairobi, Kenya, in April 2015, to promote and grow the solar industry in the East African country