Mike Hower

Managing Director, Sustainability & Social Impact
thinkPARALLAX

Mike Hower is tagged in 832 stories. Page 8 of 42.
UPS Halfway to Driving 1 Billion Miles With Clean Fuel Fleet By 2017
UPS Halfway to Driving 1 Billion Miles With Clean Fuel Fleet By 2017

New Metrics / UPS logged 154 million miles in 2014 toward its goal of driving 1 billion miles with its alternative fuel and advanced technology fleet by the end of 2017 — an almost threefold increase from 2013, according to the company’s 13th annual Sustainability Report.To put this into perspective: it took 13 years for the company to drive the first 350 million miles with its alternative fuel and advanced technology fleet, but in just one year UPS was able to build dramatically on that number and is now more than halfway to its 2017 goal. - 4 years ago

Hillary Clinton Promises Half a Billion Solar Panels by 2020
Hillary Clinton Promises Half a Billion Solar Panels by 2020

Cleantech / Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on Sunday pledged to construct half a million new solar panels within her first four years of taking office, Reuters reports.Clinton called for a decisive national shift to renewable energy sources, setting a goal of generating enough renewable energy to power every U.S. home within a decade after she takes office. She called for more solar, advanced biofuels and energy efficiency, among others.The two goals were the first elements of what Clinton said would be a comprehensive climate-change agenda to be released over the next few months, Reuters reports. - 4 years ago

Startup ‘Democratizes’ Sustainability Reporting Software
Startup ‘Democratizes’ Sustainability Reporting Software

Product, Service & Design Innovation / Sustainability reporting isn’t easy, and it’s rarely cheap. Large companies may have the finances and dedicated staffs to develop custom sustainability software, but small businesses often must make do without — relying on “old-school” technologies such as Excel spreadsheets.As one might imagine, this makes it difficult for small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to practically track their sustainability performance.That’s why a company called Rapport created a cloud-based software platform that allows SMBs to more easily collect and track their own sustainability metrics, such as water usage or the number of commuter miles their employees drive each day. - 4 years ago

More Than 75% of Consumers Influenced By Eco-Friendly Packaging, Report Says
More Than 75% of Consumers Influenced By Eco-Friendly Packaging, Report Says

Waste Not / More than three-quarters of consumers claim that environmentally-sound packaging has​ an influence on the beverage brand they buy, according to ​a new global survey of some 6,000 consumers across 12 different countries.The survey, carried out this year for food processing and packaging solutions firm Tetra Pak, revealed a growing appetite among consumers for products that tick the right environmental boxes. When asked about recent purchasing habits, two-thirds said they have bought environmental products, even when they cost more, while around the same proportion have avoided specific brands or items due to environmental concerns.​​​​​​ - 4 years ago

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TruValue Labs Expands ESG Monitoring to NYSE and NASDAQ
TruValue Labs Expands ESG Monitoring to NYSE and NASDAQ

Cleantech / Information technology company TruValue Labs has announced a major update to Insight360, a technology-based platform offering real-time environmental, social, and governance (ESG) and sustainability data.The new release allows the tool to substantially increased its coverage, from the 500 largest companies to now over 5,000 publicly traded companies in the United States, representing all companies that are traded on the NYSE and NASDAQ exchanges. - 4 years ago

US, Brazil Agree to Source 20% of Energy From Renewables by 2030
US, Brazil Agree to Source 20% of Energy From Renewables by 2030

Leadership / At a bilateral meeting with President Barack Obama in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff committed Brazil to an agreement for both countries to obtain up to 20 percent of their electricity from renewable power by 2030, The Guardian reports.In an effort to reduce carbon emissions and fight climate change, Brazil also committed to restoring close to 30 million acres (12 million hectares) of forest — an area the size of Pennsylvania. - 4 years ago

FedEx to Purchase 3 Million Gallons of Jet Biofuel Annually
FedEx to Purchase 3 Million Gallons of Jet Biofuel Annually

Cleantech / Red Rock Biofuels, maker of renewable biofuels, announced Monday that it will produce approximately three million gallons of low-carbon, renewable jet fuel per year for FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp.The agreement runs through 2024, with first delivery expected in 2017. FedEx joins Southwest Airlines in purchasing Red Rock’s total available volume of jet fuel. - 4 years ago

IKEA to Raise UK Employee Pay Above National Living Wage By 2016
IKEA to Raise UK Employee Pay Above National Living Wage By 2016

Behavior Change / IKEA will be the first national retailer in the United Kingdom to pay workers above the government's new National Living Wage, BBC News reports.The Swedish furniture company said it would pay all of its 9,000 UK workers at least £7.85 (US $12.22) per hour hour starting in April 2016. Employees in London will be paid £9.15 ($14.40) an hour, reflecting the higher cost of living. The wage increase will affect around half of the company’s UK employees. - 4 years ago

Wildlife Works Becomes Africa’s First Carbon-Neutral, Fair Trade Factory
Wildlife Works Becomes Africa’s First Carbon-Neutral, Fair Trade Factory

Leadership / Forest conservation firm Wildlife Works' factory in Kenya has become the first in Africa to be both carbon neutral and certified by Fair Trade USA.On the heels of this announcement, Wildlife Works is launching its first-ever carbon-neutral, Fair Trade-certified t-shirts, designed by fashion brand Threads 4 Thought (T4T). The clothing company will be contributing over $6,000 in Fair Trade premiums directly to Wildlife Works factory workers. - 4 years ago

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EU Proposes Plan to Help Consumers Choose Energy-Efficient Products
EU Proposes Plan to Help Consumers Choose Energy-Efficient Products

Leadership / The European Commission on Thursday proposed a revision to its energy efficiency labeling laws to "ensure coherence and continuity and makes sure that customers are able to make better informed choices that will help them save energy and money."To provide consumers with a clearer indication of the energy efficiency of products, which are currently classified in different scales, and to improve compliance for producers and retailers, the Commission is calling for a revised energy labeling system consisting of:A single energy labeling scale from ‘A to G’: the Commission is proposing a return to the well-known and effective 'A to G' label scale for energy-efficient products, including a process for rescaling the existing labels. - 4 years ago

Biomass Boiler Helps Dewar's Distillery Cut CO2 by 90%
Biomass Boiler Helps Dewar's Distillery Cut CO2 by 90%

Waste Not / The Dewar’s Aberfeldy Distillery in Scotland has cut its carbon footprint by 90 percent after installing a biomass boiler late last year.Traditionally, distilleries are heavy users of fossil fuels, but this is the latest example of investment in biomass gaining traction industry-wide.“Moving away from boilers that use heavy fuel oil – to more efficient wood pellets – helps reduce energy costs and lower emissions into the environment,” a spokesman for the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) said in a statement. - 4 years ago

UN Secretary-General Calls on Businesses to Help Finance Sustainable Development
UN Secretary-General Calls on Businesses to Help Finance Sustainable Development

Leadership / Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Tuesday called on the corporate community “to be our partners in supporting and financing this agenda” at a global conference on financing for development.The International Business Forum in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia was tasked with finding resources for a 17-point, 15-year UN plan on meeting human needs, protecting the planet and ending poverty. These Sustainable Development Goals will be up for final approval at the UN General Assembly in September. - 4 years ago

This Startup Wants to Sell You a Solar-Powered Scooter
This Startup Wants to Sell You a Solar-Powered Scooter

Product, Service & Design Innovation / Canadian startup Daymark has developed a fully electric, solar-powered scooter capable of playing music from built-in speakers, charging your phone and traveling up to 10 miles using its 24V battery pack, which is available in lithium or lead acid varieties.The Photon scooter re-charges under daylight during any kind of weather, gaining approximately 0.2 miles for every hour of exposure the 6W solar panel receives. - 4 years ago

Boeing Developing Sustainable Aviation Fuels For 2020 Olympics in Japan
Boeing Developing Sustainable Aviation Fuels For 2020 Olympics in Japan

Cleantech / Boeing and Japanese aviation industry stakeholders have partnered to develop sustainable aviation biofuel for flights during the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo, when millions of people are expected to visit Japan. The Initiatives for Next Generation Aviation Fuels (INAF) — a consortium of 46 organizations including Boeing, ANA (All Nippon Airways), Japan Airlines, Nippon Cargo Airlines, Japan's government and the University of Tokyo — laid out a five-year "roadmap" to develop biofuel by 2020 as a way to reduce aviation's environmental footprint. - 4 years ago

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Startup Says It Holds Key to Better, Cheaper, More Sustainable Batteries
Startup Says It Holds Key to Better, Cheaper, More Sustainable Batteries

Product, Service & Design Innovation / Battery storage has long been one of the last remaining significant barriers to the widespread adoption of solar energy — and a nimbler, more resilient energy grid. But a number of players are quickly emerging with solutions.In May, Tesla Energy dominated headlines when it unveiled a new home battery called the “Powerwall,” which can store solar energy and allow customers to cache grid electricity from non-peak periods to use during peak times. For business and utilities, there is a larger version available called the “Powerpack.” - 4 years ago

Social Enterprise Uses Mobile Technology to Deliver Healthcare in India
Social Enterprise Uses Mobile Technology to Deliver Healthcare in India

Product, Service & Design Innovation / Sevamob, a social enterprise which aims to fundamentally transform primary healthcare in India through mobile clinics and a tele-health marketplace, has joined the Business Call to Action (BCtA) to reduce anemia by 30 percent, HIV transmission to children by at least half of the national average and dental issues like caries by 25 percent, in the areas where it is active.The company says it provides primary healthcare and dental care to low-income people through a subscription-based model that combines local health teams with a network of specialists and a 24/7 call center for accurate diagnosis and treatment and leverages cloud-based mobile technology and data analytics to manage and monitor health outcomes. - 4 years ago

Report: Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency Will Grow Based on Cost Competitiveness Alone
Report: Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency Will Grow Based on Cost Competitiveness Alone

Cleantech / Renewable energy and energy efficiency are competitive resources in today’s marketplace that will not only be cost-effective mechanisms for compliance with EPA’s Clean Power Plan (CPP) but should also be expected to grow strictly on the basis of cost, according to a recent report by the Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) Institute. - 4 years ago

Novo Nordisk Launches Campaign to Improve Diabetes Awareness in Kenya
Novo Nordisk Launches Campaign to Improve Diabetes Awareness in Kenya

Leadership / Novo Nordisk, in partnership with the Kenyan Ministry of Health and the Kenya Diabetes Management and Information Center, has launched a six-month diabetes awareness campaign in Nairobi to promote early diagnosis through screening, especially among low-income populations.The campaign’s message — ‘It takes only five seconds to get your blood sugar tested’ — is backed up with diabetes screening and education at public health care facilities and faith-based organizations in selected counties including Nairobi. - 4 years ago

UK Startup Crowdfunding to Bring World’s First Solar Paint to Market
UK Startup Crowdfunding to Bring World’s First Solar Paint to Market

Product, Service & Design Innovation / London-based startup SolarLayer claims to have developed a new additive for paints, coatings and flooring that transforms any surface into a solar energy receptor.Through its application, any roof, wall, street or path becomes a photovoltaic generator, that works as a replacement or supplement to the traditional power grid. This technology is designed to work in 3 / 12V and is expected to lasts for more than 20 years, the company says.SolarLayer was created by a group of scientists from the United Kingdom, Argentina and Switzerland who claim that the paint additive will revolutionize everything known in photovoltaics. The product already has been tested for durability and performance in different parts of the world. - 4 years ago

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Investors Worth $1.5 Trillion Support Federal Methane Emissions Reduction Plan
Investors Worth $1.5 Trillion Support Federal Methane Emissions Reduction Plan

Leadership / Leading investors representing $1.5 trillion in assets under management released a statement of support on Thursday for a strong federal standard to reduce methane emissions from the oil and gas industry, according to Ceres. The White House’s proposal, released in January 2015, would cut methane emissions from the oil and gas industry by 45 percent below 2012 levels by the year 2025. A draft rule is expected this summer. - 4 years ago

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