Marketing and Comms

How brands are evolving in the area of sustainability marketing and communications — and how their stakeholders are asserting their own needs and preferences.

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Aimco Launches First Interactive Corporate Citizenship Report

Apartment Investment and Management Company (Aimco) has released its first interactive corporate citizenship report, which enable visitors to build their own online report or download a complete version.Aimco is a real estate investment trust headquartered in Denver, Colorado that owns and operates a geographically diversified portfolio of apartment communities. The report offers information about the company’s 2012 accomplishments in the areas of redevelopment, energy conservation, team building, customer service, financial performance and community outreach.

Roatán Completes First Sustainable Tourism Diagnostic and Action Plan

The Honduran island of Roatán has become the first tourism destination to complete a comprehensive 360-degree assessment and action plan for destination-level sustainability, according to a recent announcement by Sustainable Travel International (STI).The Rapid Sustainable Destination Diagnostic was conducted by the Mesoamerican Reef Tourism Initiative in close collaboration with STI, Honduras’ Ministry of Tourism, and Roatán’s local Geotourism Council. The diagnostic process evaluated Roatán’s performance on five key pillars of sustainability, which include sustainable tourism planning and governance, economic linkages, preservation of cultural heritage, social and community issues, and environmental protection.

Seventh Generation Reduces Virgin Plastic Use By 16% While Increasing Sales

Seventh Generation, a leading brand of non-toxic bio-based and renewable consumer products, has achieved a 16 percent reduction in virgin plastic use and a 13 percent decrease in normalized greenhouse gas emissions — all despite a 9 percent increase in sales, according to its 2012 Corporate Consciousness Report.This year's report is organized around an employee-led realignment of the company's mission into four corporate aspirations: Nurturing Nature, Enhancing Health, Transforming Commerce and Building Communities.

New Leaf Paper Joins 17 Firms Registering as Benefit Corps in Delaware

New Leaf Paper and Plum Organics were among the 17 companies on Thursday that were the first to register as Delaware benefit corporations after the legislation legalizing it was signed on July 17.Some of the other registering companies included leading fair trade food business Alter Eco, popular home goods brand Method Products and online personal delivery farmers' market Farmigo.

A Powerful Lever for Mainstreaming Sustainability: Moving from 'Should' to 'Ought'

Cross-Posted from Behavior Change. In driving engagement and behavior change, the power is often in the subtleties. So here’s a little thought that just might be a big thought: As we work toward mainstreaming sustainability, we should stop talking in terms of should, and instead we ought to start speaking in terms of ought.Here’s what I mean. “Should” makes a demand on us that comes from outside us, and often from above us. Authority figures tell us we “should” clean our room, do our homework, be home by eleven, eat less, move more, live with less, choose wisely and recycle. We feel it pressing upon us as one more thing to add to our list of things to do, or to refrain from doing, to win favor and avoid guilt.

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Monadnock Paper Mills Wins EPA 2013 Environmental Merit Award

Family-owned paper company Monadnock Paper Mills has been recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a recipient of a 2013 Environmental Merit Award for its significant contributions to environmental awareness and problem solving.Awarded annually by the EPA since 1970, the Environmental Merit Awards recognize individuals and organizations whose work has protected or improved the environment in distinct ways. A winner in the Business, Industry, Trade or Professional category for the State of New Hampshire, Monadnock has been highlighted for the following achievements:

Marriott Pledges to Create Sustainable Development, Jobs as It Grows in Emerging Markets

Marriott International recently released its 2013 Sustainability Report update, which claims the company reduced global water usage by 12 percent and greenhouse gas emissions by 16.5 percent in 2012.The international hotel chain also says it is looking to move beyond its current global footprint of more than 3,800 hotels in over 70 countries and focus on providing sustainable economic activity and local employment. In coming years, more than half of its new hotels will be located in emerging markets, where tourism is a major driver of new jobs and economic development.

FTC to Mattress Companies: Don't Pad Your Green Claims

If you or your clients make environmental marketing claims, don’t sleep on three actions the FTC just announced against companies that sell mattresses. What's more, the pleadings in one case offer insights into a course of conduct advertisers should avoid in the use of seals and certifications.

Intel, Microsoft and Kohl’s Top EPA’s Green Power Rankings

Intel recently topped the Environmental Protection Agency’s Green Power list of partner organizations utilizing renewable energy. The technology and telecom company uses renewables such as biogas, biomass, small-hydro, solar and wind to generate more than 3.1 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of clean energy each year.Microsoft came in second, producing just under 2 billion kWh, and Kohl's a close third, generating over 1.5 billion kWh.

PepsiCo No Longer Labeling Naked Juices as ‘All Natural’

PepsiCo has announced that it will no longer label its Naked juices as being ‘‘all natural,’’ after paying $9 million to settle a lawsuit that claimed the drinks contain artificial ingredients.The company said in an email statement that it uses an ‘‘added boost of vitamins’’ in some of the drinks. However, a lawsuit filed against the company said the vitamins are actually synthetic ingredients, which includes a fiber made by Archer Daniels Midland. While PepsiCo did not confirm or deny that these synthetic fibers are included in the juices, the company is dropping the use of the word ‘‘natural’’ until more solid regulatory guidance emerges.

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Energy Sector Shareholders Continue to Push Companies to Address Climate, Fossil Fuels

Investors have achieved notable victories during this year’s shareholder proxy season, with a near record 110 shareholder resolutions filed with 94 U.S. companies on hydraulic fracturing, flaring, fossil fuel reserve risks and other climate- and sustainability-related risks and opportunities.The majority of resolutions filed within the energy sector focused on strategies recently promoted by the International Energy Agency in its report, Redrawing the Energy-Climate Map, to reduce sector-wide greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions at no net economic cost, and in some cases, economic gain.Some of these strategies include:

Why Be a B Corp? Ask a Millennial

Every year, four million Millennials — Generation Y, born between 1982 and 2002 — set out on their own to join the workforce. This generation, which makes up about quarter of today’s population, is one of the most diverse, technologically connected and well-educated group in history — and they have strong opinions about corporate authenticity, transparency and responsibility. According to a recent survey by Net Impact, eighty percent of 13-25-year-olds want to work for a company that cares about its impacts.

Beanfields Snacks Awarded B Corporation Status

Bean and rice tortilla chip maker Beanfields Snacks has achieved its certification as a B Corporation.The family-owned company joins Ben and Jerry’s, Etsy, Patagonia and hundreds of others companies worldwide using the power of business to tackle social and environmental problems.

Molson Coors Sustainability Report Details Successes, Failures, Next Steps in Improving Its 'Beer Print'

On Tuesday, Molson Coors Brewing Company released its 2013 Corporate Responsibility Report, covering the company’s performance in five key areas: Governance and Ethics, Alcohol Responsibility, Environmental Stewardship, Employees and Community and Responsible Sourcing.The report highlights significant savings of energy, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, water consumption and waste to landfill based on targets the company set in 2008.

Ford Becomes First Automaker to Join Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program in India

Ford Motor Company announced today it is taking another major step toward helping stabilize carbon dioxide emissions globally, becoming the first automaker to join a voluntary greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting program recently established in India. The company already participates in similar programs in the United States, China, Canada, Mexico, Brazil and Argentina.

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Delaware Combines Power of Business and Social Good With New Benefit Corporation Legislation

As The New Metrics of Sustainable Business Conference draws closer, we will be building up the conversation around industry developments to explore future investments in sustainability. One of the latest developments is the enactment of benefit corporation legislation in Delaware on July 17th. Benefit corporation legislation seeks to protect for-profit companies that want to do well and do good at the same time, by allowing them the freedom to pursue higher corporate purposes, aside from maximizing profits.While DE is the 18th state to sign benefit corporation legislation into law, it is undoubtedly one of the most important states to do so.

Stop Talking About Sustainability, Start Sharing What Works

Cross-Posted from Collaboration. What makes a company like GSK give away information about thousands of potential malaria-treating drugs? Why did Nike spend 6 million USD developing their Enironmental Design Apparel Tool (minimising the impact of their products in the design process) and subsequent MAKING design app only to give them away for others to use?

How to Assess Credibility in a Sea of Ecolabels

More and more products on supermarket shelves bear sustainability claims, promising everything from biodegradable household cleaners to bird-friendly coffee. But with over 400 ecolabels on the market (according to the Ecolabel Index) it can be difficult for any company, consumer or government to know which to trust, given the array of promises and limited evidence of benefits.

Key Global Stakeholders Express Support for REDD+ Protocol in California's Climate Policy

As the California Air Resources Board prepares to consider moving forward on international initiatives to Reduce Emissions from Deforestation & Forest Degradation (REDD+) within the state's climate policy, a large consortium of key stakeholders — from multinational corporations to global NGOs and indigenous community leaders — have rallied in support of REDD+.

Inditex Re-Affirms Its Commitment to Sustainability, Health & Safety

Spanish multinational clothing company Inditex says that in 2012 it conducted nearly 1.5 million tests on its clothing worldwide to ensure health and safety standards, as well as carrying out more than 3,500 audits on suppliers under its Code of Conduct.Inditex chairman Pablo Isla made the announcements this week at the company’s Annual General Meeting at its headquarters in Arteixo, La Coruña, Spain.

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