Mike Hower

Managing Director, Sustainability & Social Impact
thinkPARALLAX

Mike Hower is tagged in 832 stories. Page 6 of 42.
CDP, We Mean Business Launch Toolkit to Aid Large-Scale Decarbonization
CDP, We Mean Business Launch Toolkit to Aid Large-Scale Decarbonization

Cleantech / CDP and We Mean Business, a business and investor coalition focused on transitioning to a low-carbon economy, have launched a new set of tools aimed at changing the conversation about effective carbon pricing policies globally, according to an announcement made on Thursday at Climate Week NYC.The Carbon Pricing Pathways Toolkit presents analysis on ways that carbon pricing levels could be ramped up over time to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions, drive innovation in new technologies and transform countries’ energy use. - 4 years ago

Study: Millennials Are Strongest CSR Supporters in U.S.
Study: Millennials Are Strongest CSR Supporters in U.S.

Marketing and Comms / Millennials are universally more engaged in corporate social responsibility (CSR) efforts, according to new research from Cone Communications. This includes everything from buying products associated with a cause they care about to using their online networks to amplify social and environmental messages.The 2015 Cone Communications Millennial CSR Study reveals that more than nine-in-10 Millennials would switch brands to one associated with a cause (91% vs. 85% U.S. average) and two-thirds use social media to engage around CSR (66% vs. 53% U.S. average). - 4 years ago

Climate Week: State and Regional Governments Pledge a Cut to GHG Greater Than US Annual Emissions
Climate Week: State and Regional Governments Pledge a Cut to GHG Greater Than US Annual Emissions

Collaboration / The leaders of state and regional governments, spanning North and South America, Europe and Australia, on Tuesday announced collective climate targets that would save 7.9 gigatons of equivalent carbon dioxide (GtCO2e) by 2030 — greater than the U.S.’s carbon emissions in 2012.Announced at Climate Week NYC, the pledges come from the Compact of States and Regions, a UN supported initiative that aims to drive major emissions reductions after the COP climate summit in December, where the expected deal will come into force in 2020.Altogether, the sub-national governments making up the Compact represent 10 percent of global GDP and 220 million people. - 4 years ago

Kickstarter Becomes a Public Benefit Corporation
Kickstarter Becomes a Public Benefit Corporation

Leadership / Crowdfunding platform Kickstarter has announced it is reincorporating as a public benefit corporation, The New York Times reports, a legal designation that protects for-profit companies that want to do well and do good at the same time by affording them the freedom to pursue corporate purposes beyond maximizing profits. - 4 years ago

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Facebook, Google Back World Food Programme Humanitarian Relief Efforts
Facebook, Google Back World Food Programme Humanitarian Relief Efforts

Collaboration / Facebook, Google and Twitter are among the more than a dozen companies that have come together today, the International Day of Peace, to draw attention to the vital role of food assistance in creating a more peaceful world.Many firms are donating television and digital media channels to drive support for the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. It delivers food assistance in emergencies and works with communities to improve nutrition and build resilience, assisting some 80 million people in around 80 countries each year. - 4 years ago

AB InBev, Heineken Join Local Brewers to Launch World's First 'Global Beer Responsibility Day'
AB InBev, Heineken Join Local Brewers to Launch World's First 'Global Beer Responsibility Day'

Collaboration / Three of the world’s largest brewers, Anheuser-Busch InBev, Heineken and Carlsberg, as well as local brewers and beer associations, have come together to lead Global Beer Responsibility Day, a new worldwide effort to promote the responsible consumption of beer, according to a recent announcement.In its first year as a global, collaborative effort, brewers, along with many other local partners, will focus on reducing the harmful use of alcohol and promoting responsible enjoyment of beer in communities around the world. - 4 years ago

Microsoft, GE Among Big Brands Backing New White House ‘Smart Cities’ Initiative
Microsoft, GE Among Big Brands Backing New White House ‘Smart Cities’ Initiative

Cleantech / Microsoft, GE and Bank of America are among the ten companies supporting a White House challenge to U.S. cities to become smarter by accelerating deployment of innovative technologies that tackle energy, water, waste and air challenges.Organized by the nonprofit, Envision America, the new effort will invite leaders from 10 winning communities to participate in a workshop in January in Charlotte, NC, where they will work with leading experts from industry and academia to diagnose needs, workshop solutions and develop new smart initiatives for their community. - 4 years ago

UK ‘Borrowing Hub’ Challenges Consumption Economy
UK ‘Borrowing Hub’ Challenges Consumption Economy

The Next Economy / The “sharing economy” has become a buzzword of sorts in recent years. Everything from cars to homes and even people’s dogs can now be “shared” with strangers connected through digital technology. But what about everyday “stuff”? That old guitar collecting dust, the hammer buried in your drawer or even… your trusty unicycle?The sharing economy is particularly popular in the United Kingdom, where research has shown some 65 percent of adults already are part of it, benefiting from £4.6 billion ($7.1 billion) worth of savings or earnings. - 4 years ago

Sierra Nevada Snowpack Reaches 500-Year Low
Sierra Nevada Snowpack Reaches 500-Year Low

New Metrics / California’s record-low snowpack this year actually may be far more historic than previously thought — at its lowest in more than 500 years, according to a paper published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change, The Los Angeles Times reports.To reconstruct centuries-old snow conditions, researchers analyzed data from snowpack measuring stations in the Sierra Nevada, as well as two tree-ring studies. The first study used measurements from 1,500 living and dead blue oak trees to estimate rainfall back to the year 1400. The second included tree-ring data from a different group of trees to model temperatures for the same period. - 4 years ago

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Cutting GHGs by 25% Among Carnival’s New 2020 Sustainability Goals
Cutting GHGs by 25% Among Carnival’s New 2020 Sustainability Goals

New Metrics / After meeting its initial goal a year ahead of schedule, Carnival Corporation has renewed its goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent from its 2005 baseline by 2020, according to a recent announcement of the travel and leisure company’s 2020 sustainability goals.As part of the effort, the company and its 10 global brands have developed strategic energy reduction and conservation initiatives, many of which exceed current laws and regulations. - 4 years ago

German Startup Franchises Biogas Bag Business in Africa
German Startup Franchises Biogas Bag Business in Africa

Product, Service & Design Innovation / German social enterprise B-Energy has developed portable “digester” bags that produce methane gas out of food waste or animal droppings, which can help low-income entrepreneurs in the global South make a living through a franchise model, BBC News reports.The bags, which are heat and fire resistant, come with a tap and pipe that users can attach to a gas stove. They hold up to 1.2 cubic meters of gas — enough for about five hours of cooking. - 4 years ago

Oil Lobby Compels California to Drop 50% Oil Cut
Oil Lobby Compels California to Drop 50% Oil Cut

Leadership / California, Gov. Jerry Brown and Senate Democrats abandoned a 50 percent cut in petroleum use by 2030 that was a focal point of the state’s climate change policy, following an intense campaign against the mandate by the oil industry, The New York Times reports.The petroleum cut was meant to help reduce carbon emissions by 80 percent by 2050, using 1990 emission levels as a baseline. - 4 years ago

Report: Low-Carbon Cities a $17 Trillion Economic Opportunity
Report: Low-Carbon Cities a $17 Trillion Economic Opportunity

New Metrics / Investing in public and low emission transport, building efficiency, and waste management in cities could generate savings with a current value of $17 trillion by 2050, according to new research from the New Climate Economy, the flagship project of the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate.The report, Accelerating Low-Carbon Development in the World’s Cities, found that these low-carbon investments could also reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 3.7 gigatons of carbon dioxide equivalent (Gt CO2e) per year by 2030, more than the current annual emissions of India. - 4 years ago

Report: Lack of Data on Ag Emissions Leaves 10% of Global GHG Unaccounted For
Report: Lack of Data on Ag Emissions Leaves 10% of Global GHG Unaccounted For

Supply Chain / Coca-Cola, Unilever, Nestlé and 70 other major food brands already are engaging suppliers on managing climate change, but much work remains to uncover this specific but significant area of greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new CDP report.The biggest source of food-related greenhouse gas emissions occur in the agricultural production portion of producer's supply chains, but less than a quarter of the major brands that disclosed to CDP this year reported their indirect emissions from agricultural production. - 4 years ago

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This Algae Could Help Cut Wastewater Sewage Farms’ Costs By 60%
This Algae Could Help Cut Wastewater Sewage Farms’ Costs By 60%

Waste Not / Arizona State University Professor Peter Lammers and researchers at New Mexico State University are developing an energy-positive wastewater treatment method using a special kind of algae, The Guardian reports.The researchers believe that algal systems ultimately could eliminate sewage farms’ electricity bills, which can account for up to 60 percent of operating costs today, or even generate a surplus. - 4 years ago

Report: Climate Impacts Causing Billions in Economic Damage; El Niño Making It Worse
Report: Climate Impacts Causing Billions in Economic Damage; El Niño Making It Worse

New Metrics / As El Niño continues to intensify in the coming months, it is expected that global drought losses will surpass the current forecast $8 billion in economic damage, according to a new report by Aon Benfield, the global reinsurance intermediary and capital advisor of risk management firm Aon. - 4 years ago

Social Enterprise Bringing Solar Power to Mexico’s Off-Grid Communities
Social Enterprise Bringing Solar Power to Mexico’s Off-Grid Communities

Product, Service & Design Innovation / Iluméxico, a Mexican social enterprise focused on solar power, has joined the Business Call to Action (BCtA) with a commitment to bring its Solar Home Systems to 50,000 off-the-grid rural homes — approximately 300,000 people — by 2020.This commitment includes the creation of 180 new jobs, of which 90 will be designated for women and 70 will be based in rural communities.The company said it plans to increase its “ILU Centros” support network from 5 to 50 locations nationwide and strengthen alliances with both public and private institutions. Anticipating up to 70 percent growth within the next five years, Iluméxico also plans to expand its business into two new Latin American countries by 2020. - 4 years ago

Citibank: Tackling Climate Change Would Create Positive ROI for the Global Economy
Citibank: Tackling Climate Change Would Create Positive ROI for the Global Economy

New Metrics / Taking action to mitigate climate change by investing in a low-carbon energy mix will save more money in the long run than inaction, even before accounting for savings from avoided climate damage costs, according to a new report by Citi Global Perspectives & Solutions (GPS), a division within Citibank. - 4 years ago

Rio de Janeiro First 'Fully Committed City' in Fight Against Climate Change
Rio de Janeiro First 'Fully Committed City' in Fight Against Climate Change

Leadership / Rio de Janeiro has become the first city in the world to reach full compliance with the Compact of Mayors, a global coalition of city leaders dedicated to reducing their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, making urban communities more resilient to climate change and regularly reporting their progress publicly.Rio now has established a local GHG emission inventory using the Global Protocol for Community-scale GHG Emissions Inventory (GPC), the international “gold” standard for GHG emission reporting, according to a recent announcement. It also is the first Brazilian city to complete a study on climate vulnerabilities. - 4 years ago

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Report: UN Carbon Credits Program May Have Increased CO2 Emissions
Report: UN Carbon Credits Program May Have Increased CO2 Emissions

Leadership / Around three-quarters of the carbon credits issued under Joint Implementation (JI) may actually have increased emissions by about 600 million metric tons, according to a new study by the Stockholm Environmental Institute (SEI).JI allows countries with emission reduction commitments under the Kyoto Protocol to generate Emission Reduction Units (ERUs) from carbon reduction projects and transfer them to other countries. - 4 years ago

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