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Mike Hower

Managing Director, Sustainability & Social Impact
thinkPARALLAX

Mike Hower is tagged in 833 stories. Page 9 of 42.
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. - 5 years ago

Report: Sustainability Innovation Powering Business Growth
Report: Sustainability Innovation Powering Business Growth

New Metrics / Revenues from company-defined portfolios of sustainable products and services grew by 91 percent between 2010 and 2013, according to a new report by The Conference Board, a public interest research association.For S&P Global 100 companies that break out revenue for sustainable products or services separately, that revenue stream grew at six times the rate of overall company results. - 5 years ago

AT&T, Verizon Pledge to Improve Energy Efficiency of Home Internet Equipment
AT&T, Verizon Pledge to Improve Energy Efficiency of Home Internet Equipment

Leadership / AT&T, Verizon, and Cisco are among the dozens of internet service providers, equipment suppliers and retail equipment manufacturers to join the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) and the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) in announcing a new voluntary agreement to improve the energy efficiency of internet modems, routers and other equipment that deliver broadband to millions of American consumers.Other companies to sign on include Charter Communications, Comcast, DIRECTV, Bright House Networks, Cablevision, CenturyLink, Cox Communications, Time Warner Cable, Actiontec, ARRIS, D-Link, EchoStar Technologies, NETGEAR and Pace and Ubee Interactive. - 5 years ago

Report: Major Gap in Sustainability Adoption Between Large, Small Office Buildings
Report: Major Gap in Sustainability Adoption Between Large, Small Office Buildings

Marketing and Comms / More than 60 percent of large buildings qualify as “green,” compared to less than 5 percent of small buildings, according to a new study by CBRE Group and Maastricht University.The 2015 Green Building Adoption Index, a joint project of CBRE and Maastricht, concludes this may afford owners of small buildings an opportunity to differentiate themselves by implementing energy-efficient practices.The report defines “green” as an office building holding either an EPA ENERGY STAR label, U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) full-building LEED certification or both. in the study, “large” buildings are those greater than 500,000 square feet, while “small” buildings are less than 100,000 square feet. - 5 years ago

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Trending: New Benchmark, Indices Show Continued Momentum Behind Impact Investing
Trending: New Benchmark, Indices Show Continued Momentum Behind Impact Investing

New Metrics / Private impact investment funds — specifically private equity and venture capital funds — that pursue social impact objectives have recorded financial returns in line with a comparative universe of funds that only pursue financial returns, according to a first-of-its-kind analysis from global investment advisor Cambridge Associates (CA) and the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN). - 5 years ago

UN Global Compact Unveils Website to Spur Sustainable Business
UN Global Compact Unveils Website to Spur Sustainable Business

Leadership / The UN Global Compact (UNGC) has launched a new official website aimed at spurring corporate sustainability action.Designed to support business at all stages along the corporate sustainability journey — from those companies that are just learning how to integrate sustainability into their business, to the most advanced companies operating on the leading edge — the website helps make the business case for corporate sustainability and shows how companies can engage on specific issues, such as gender equality and climate. It also provides ideas for leadership practices, such as engaging boards of directors and setting long-term sustainability goals. - 5 years ago

Wells Fargo, USCM Honor Cities for Best Neighborhood Stabilization Programs
Wells Fargo, USCM Honor Cities for Best Neighborhood Stabilization Programs

Leadership / The mayors of Baltimore, MD, Little Rock, AR and West Sacramento, CA have been recognized with top honors in an awards program administered by The U.S. Conference of Mayors (USCM) and funded by the Wells Fargo Foundation.Presented Monday at USCM’s 83rd Annual Meeting in San Francisco, the 2015 CommunityWINS (Working/Investing in Neighborhood Stabilization) Grant Program includes monetary grants to city-based non-profit organizations and recognizes mayors for exemplary leadership in developing local programs that promote long-term economic prosperity and improve the quality of life for residents in three categories: neighborhood stabilization, economic development and job creation. - 5 years ago

First Annual Recyclebank Awards Honor Cities That Cut Waste
First Annual Recyclebank Awards Honor Cities That Cut Waste

Waste Not / Recyclebank, which claims to to inspire and reward smarter, everyday choices for a more sustainable future, has named Mayor Bryan Barnett of Rochester Hills, MI “Mayor of the Year” as part of the first annual Recyclebank Awards.The awards recognizes one “Mayor of the Year” and participating U.S. cities and towns that go above and beyond expectations to “slash the trash” by promoting recycling efforts and recycling education. - 5 years ago

How Digital Mapping Is Helping Detroit Fight Urban Blight
How Digital Mapping Is Helping Detroit Fight Urban Blight

Cleantech / As previously functioning urban areas fall into disrepair, urban blight increasingly is afflicting cities across the United States. Characterized by high local unemployment and crime, political disenfranchisement and depopulation, in some of these areas the endless blocks of abandoned buildings seems like scenes out of a post-apocalyptic movie. - 5 years ago

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Ecolab Helped Customers Save 115 Billion Gallons of Water in 2014
Ecolab Helped Customers Save 115 Billion Gallons of Water in 2014

New Metrics / Ecolab’s efforts to help customers reduce, reuse, manage and treat water more efficiently led to a savings of 115 billion gallons of water in 2014, according to the company’s 2014 Corporate Sustainability Report, released Thursday.The company also launched the Water Risk Monetizer, a free public tool designed to help change the way water is valued and managed by all water users.Ecolab says its mission is “to provide and protect what is vital: clean water, safe food, abundant energy and healthy environments.” Through partnerships with customers, NGOs and communities, the company helps address some of the world’s most urgent resource and business challenges. - 5 years ago

Verb Secures $2.3M in Seed Funding to Help Social Entrepreneurs Solve 'Wicked' Problems
Verb Secures $2.3M in Seed Funding to Help Social Entrepreneurs Solve 'Wicked' Problems

Product, Service & Design Innovation / Social enterprise Verb has closed $2.3 million in series seed funding — one of the largest rounds ever for an Austin-based social enterprise, according to a recent announcement.The investment capital will be used to fund global expansion, platform development and strategic hires, the company says. Recent additions to the company include a chief operating officer and chief creative officer, and Verb says it expects to continue to grow the team throughout the year. - 5 years ago

Stanford Scientists Create ‘Designer Carbon’ That Improves Battery Performance
Stanford Scientists Create ‘Designer Carbon’ That Improves Battery Performance

Chemistry, Materials & Packaging / Stanford scientists have created a new carbon material that “significantly” boosts the performance of batteries and supercapacitors, according to a new study published in ACS Central Science.Zhenan Bao, senior author of the study and a professor of chemical engineering at Stanford, said they have developed a so-called “designer carbon” that is both versatile and controllable. The material has notable energy-storage capacity, which enables high performance in lithium-sulfur batteries and supercapacitors. - 5 years ago

Ceres Releases Water Risk Disclosure Search Tool
Ceres Releases Water Risk Disclosure Search Tool

Cleantech / Ceres has released a new search tool that enables users to access water risk disclosures in company filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).The SEC Sustainability Disclosure Search tool allows users to find disclosures in 4,500 U.S. companies’ annual filings relating to water availability, scarcity, quality, pollution, regulation and innovation. The tool covers 10-K filings from 2009 to the present and helps stakeholders, including investors, companies, academics and analysts, better understand how businesses are measuring, managing and disclosing material water risks and opportunities. - 5 years ago

GSK, Save the Children Launch Program to Protect Kids During Climate Disasters
GSK, Save the Children Launch Program to Protect Kids During Climate Disasters

Collaboration / Healthcare firm GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Columbia University’s National Center for Disaster Preparedness (NCDP) and Save the Children have announced a partnership to protect the millions of children who are at risk of natural or man-made climate disasters.The Resilient Children/Resilient Communities Initiative — funded through a $2 million, three-year grant from GSK — will analyze and recommend procedures, trainings and guidance to help localities shield children from post-disaster devastation. - 5 years ago

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Morgan Stanley Closes Issuance of Inaugural $500 Million Green Bond
Morgan Stanley Closes Issuance of Inaugural $500 Million Green Bond

Marketing and Comms / Morgan Stanley has announced that it closed on the issuance of a $500 million green bond, its first green bond, as part of the company’s strategy to advance market-based solutions to social and environmental challenges.Funds equal to the net proceeds of Morgan Stanley’s green bond will be allocated to various renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. Much of these funds will correspond with investments in existing and future third-party renewable energy projects, primarily wind farms, including Route 66 Wind, a 150 MW wind farm under construction in Texas, and Rattlesnake Wind Energy Center, a 207 MW wind power project also under construction in Texas. - 5 years ago

Interface Set to Scale 'Net-Works' Program That Turns Fishing Nets Into Carpet
Interface Set to Scale 'Net-Works' Program That Turns Fishing Nets Into Carpet

Waste Not / Net-Works, a social entrepreneurship initiative from carpet manufacturer Interface and conservation charity Zoological Society of London (ZSL), has since 2012 collected more than 66,860 kilos of nets from residents in 14 collection sites in Danajon Bank and the Bantayan Islands, according to a recent announcement.In addition, the program has yielded 508 memberships in community banks, with the opportunity to earn supplemental income through the sale of nets, as well as access to financial infrastructure via locally-established CoMSCAs (Community Managed Credit and Savings Associations) or local microfinance initiatives. - 5 years ago

Healthcare Firms Top 2015 Newsweek Green Rankings
Healthcare Firms Top 2015 Newsweek Green Rankings

Leadership / Pharmaceutical companies Biogen, SHIRE and Allergan led the Global 500 in the 2015 Newsweek Green Rankings, a popular assessment of corporate environmental performance.Reckitt Benckiser Group, Adobe Systems, Swisscom, Unilever, Broadcom Corporation, Roche Holding (another pharmaceutical firm) and BT Group rounded out the top 10.The rankings are done in partnership with Corporate Knights Capital, HIP (Human Impact + Profit) Investor, and leading sustainability minds from nongovernmental organizations and the academic and accounting communities. - 5 years ago

Back to the Roots Discusses $2 Million Investment From Top Food, Tech CEOs
Back to the Roots Discusses $2 Million Investment From Top Food, Tech CEOs

Product, Service & Design Innovation / Oakland-based food startup B​ack to the Roots (BTTR) today ​announced the close of its first round of funding, raising $2 million to accelerate its mission to undo food and build the “new Kraft Foods.” - 5 years ago

The Ocean Cleanup Sets Course for World’s Largest Landfill — On Water
The Ocean Cleanup Sets Course for World’s Largest Landfill — On Water

Waste Not / The largest landfill in the world can’t be found on land at all — but in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. The so-called “Great Pacific Garbage Patch” consists of millions of pounds of trash, mostly plastic, which have created an oceanic desert where only tiny phytoplankton can survive. - 5 years ago

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Norwegian Government Makes Largest Coal Divestment in History
Norwegian Government Makes Largest Coal Divestment in History

Behavior Change / The Norwegian parliament has unanimously voted for the Norwegian Government Pension Fund (GPFG) to adopt strong divestment criteria for companies involved in coal mining and coal fired utilities, including 49 companies and subsidiaries based in the United States.The GPFG is the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund and the new criteria will most likely force it to divest from 122 companies totaling $8.7 billion, according to calculations made by Urgewald, Greenpeace and Future in Our Hands.The exclusion criteria states that any company deriving more than 30 percent of its activity from coal will be excluded from GPFG’s portfolio, including both coal mining and coal fired utilities. - 5 years ago

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