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American Apparel Launches New Pencils of Promise Collection to Support Literacy in Developing Countries

Tue, 11/14/2017 - 12:12pm

American Apparel has launched a capsule collection  of hoodies, t-shirts and bags in support of Pencils of Promise (POP) to fund the construction of schools and provide support for teachers in developing nations. POP is a US-based not-for-profit organization that works to increase access to education and raise global awareness of child illiteracy as there are 250 million children worldwide who lack basic reading, writing and math skills.

We are a proud supporter of Pencils of Promise, who have already helped over 70,000 students to gain access to quality education through infrastructure projects and literacy programming,” said Mike Hoffman, President, Gildan’s Printwear division, owner of the American Apparel® brand. “As the surest path out of poverty, education opens up possibilities for these children to move towards a better life and a more hopeful future. It is one of the most powerful weapons that we can use to change the world.”

With the message ‘250 million kids can’t read this’, American Apparel’s new capsule collection represents a commitment of U.S. $200,000 to build new educational infrastructure, improve classroom environments and provide support for teachers. The goal of this initiative is to foster a conversation around the need for better quality education, inciting consumers to take a position on child literacy and become passionate about increasing children’s opportunities for a brighter future.

The collaboration between American Apparel and Pencils of Promise is designed to raise awareness and support for child literacy, inspiring generations of globally conscious and impact-oriented consumers to help students in developing countries have the same access to quality education that they received. 

About Gildan

Gildan is a leading manufacturer and marketer of quality branded basic family apparel, including T-shirts, fleece, sport shirts, underwear, socks, hosiery, and shapewear. The Company sells its products under a diversified portfolio of company-owned brands, including the Gildan®, Gold Toe®, Anvil®, Comfort Colors®, American Apparel®, Alstyle®, Secret®, Silks®, Kushyfoot®, Secret Silky®, Peds®, MediPeds®, and Therapy Plus™ brands. Sock products are also distributed through the Company’s exclusive U.S. sock license for the Under Armour® brand, and a wide array of products are also marketed through a global license for the Mossy Oak® brand. The Company's products are sold in two primary markets, namely the printwear and retail markets. The Company distributes its products in printwear markets in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America. In retail markets, the Company sells its products to a broad spectrum of retailers primarily in the U.S. and Canada and also manufactures for select leading global athletic and lifestyle consumer brands.

Gildan owns and operates vertically-integrated, large-scale manufacturing facilities which are primarily located in Central America, the Caribbean Basin, North America, and Bangladesh. These facilities are strategically located to efficiently service the quick replenishment needs of Gildan's customers. With over 48,000 employees worldwide Gildan operates with a strong commitment to industry-leading labour and environmental practices throughout its supply chain in accordance with its comprehensive corporate social responsibility program embedded in the Company's long-term business strategy. More information about the Company and its corporate citizenship practices and initiatives can be found at www.gildancorp.com and www.genuinegildan.com, respectively.

Media Inquiries:

Garry Bell
Vice President, Corporate Marketing and Communications
(514) 744-8600
gbell@gildan.com

2nd Berlin ESG Investments & Green Finance Forum 2017

Tue, 11/14/2017 - 9:11am

2nd Berlin ESG Investments & Green Finance Forum 2017. Connecting Green Finance with Sustainable Brands  Topic: "ESG Investments in Digitalization, Clean Energy & Sustainable Brands as Growth Drivers towards a Low Carbon Economy". Forum dedicated Website: http://sustainabilityforum.de  

Berlin 14.11.2017 - Location: IBB, Conference Center, Bundesallee 210,10719, Berlin

Forum Metrics: 16 int. speakers from 7 countries (Germany, USA, UK, Switzerland, Luxemburg, Belgium, Greece) & 10 partners  

FORUM PROGRAM - AGENDA: Speeches - Panels: 16.00 - 20.00. Networking Reception: 20.00 - 21.30 

- 15.30 - 16.00: Registration- Warming Up  

- 16.00- 16.10: Welcome / Introductory Remarks: Volker Weber, President, FNG,  & Yannis Salavopoulos, Managing Director, Global Sustain GmbH   

16.10 - 17.10: 1st Panel: ESG Sustainable Investments & Green Finance Trends Panel with Q & A 

Panels Moderator: Detlev Glow, Head of EMEA Research, Thomson Reuters Lipper   

Panel Speakers: 

  • Kristina Jeromin, Head of Group Sustainability, Deutsche Börse (Germany) 

  • Claudia Tober, Managing Director, FNG Forum (Germany) 

  • Marius Cara, D. Head of Investor Relations, European Investment Bank (Luxemburg)  

  • Kostis Tselenis, Head of Investments, Quadia (Switzerland)

  • Jean-Florent, Head of FI Business Development, Trucost (S&P Dow Jones Indices)

  • Greg Lowe, Global Head of Resilience & Sustainability, AON (UK) 

17.10 - 17.25: 1st Keynote Speech: Michael Spanos, Managing Director, Global Sustain Group, Yannis Salavopoulos, Managing Director, Global Sustain GmbH (CEO, CCG GmbH) on the "Future of ESG Responsible Investments & Green Finance. From Theory to Praxis. A disruptive Approach" 

17.25 - 17.40: 2nd Keynote Speech: Claudia Tober, Managing Director, FNG on "ESG Responsible Investments Market Trends in Germany & DACH Region"  

17.40 - 18.40 - 2nd Connecting ESG Investments & Green Finance with Sustainable Brands Panel with Q & A 

Panel speakers:

  • Dr. Maja Göpel, General Secretary, German Advisory Council on Global Change - Scientific Council of the Federal Government of Germany 

  • Christian Pech, Director IBB & Regional Chairman IBF 

  • Peter Koegler,  Director Corporate & Ecosystem Finance, Conservation International  

  • March Weissberger, CFO, Climate KIC 

  • Markus Schwaniger, CFO, Ecoligo GmbH  

18.40 - 18.50: Closing speech: Marius Cara, Deputy Head of Investor Relations, European Investment Bank (Luxemburg)  

18.50 - 19.00: Sum up + Conclusions  

19.00 onwards: Networking Reception with Buffett  

For further information or for registration of journalists, media, diplomats, public servants, please contact and register for free under:
international.affairs@globalsustain.org

SC Johnson Korea Named Best Workplace for the 1st Time

Mon, 11/13/2017 - 6:11pm

SC Johnson announced today that the Great Place to Work® Institute has recognized SC Johnson Korea as one of the 35 Best Workplaces in Korea. This is the first time SC Johnson Korea has been recognized on the Institute’s annual Best Workplace list. The award and placement in the rankings is attributed to high scores in the Trust Index and the Employee Feedback section of the Institute’s assessment.

“This achievement underscores the hard work of the SC Johnson Korea team and their dedication to living our values,” said Fisk Johnson, Chairman and CEO of SC Johnson. “We are proud of this honor and congratulate the team on being ranked for the first time.”

The Korea team joins SC Johnson Venezuela, France, Germany, Poland, Greece, Mexico, Canada, Central America, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Turkey, India, Australia, Brazil and Rio on the 2017 list of Best Workplaces. Regional Best Workplace awards for the company’s Europe and Latin America operations have also been announced this year.

The Best Workplaces list is the world’s largest annual study of workplace excellence. The ranking is determined by the results of an employee opinion survey and information provided about company culture, programs and policies.

In the United States, SC Johnson has been included 29 times in Working Mother magazine’s list of the “100 Best Companies for Working Mothers” and in 2017 received a perfect score of 100 percent on the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index.

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About SC Johnson
SC Johnson is a family company dedicated to innovative, high-quality products, excellence in the workplace and a long-term commitment to the environment and the communities in which it operates. Based in the USA, the company is one of the world's leading manufacturers of household cleaning products and products for home storage, air care, pest control and shoe care, as well as professional products. It markets such well-known brands as GLADE®, KIWI®, OFF!®, PLEDGE®, RAID®, SCRUBBING BUBBLES®, SHOUT®, WINDEX® and ZIPLOC® in the U.S. and beyond, with brands marketed outside the U.S. including AUTAN®, TANA®, BAMA®, BAYGON®, BRISE®, KABIKILLER®, KLEAR®, MR MUSCLE® and RIDSECT®. The 131-year-old company, which generates $10 billion in sales, employs approximately 13,000 people globally and sells products in virtually every country around the world. www.scjohnson.com

10th Annual Corporate Citizenship Film Festival

Mon, 11/13/2017 - 3:10pm

The Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship's Film Festival is the largest film festival devoted exclusively to celebrating the work of corporate social responsibility (CSR) professionals, their companies, and programs. The 2018 Film Festival—the tenth annual—is presented by Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC); winners will be honored at the 2018 International Corporate Citizenship Conference, being held April 8-10, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.

The Film Festival is open to all companies regardless of size or location. To participate, an organization is asked to submit a short film depicting one or more aspects of a recent corporate citizenship initiative. Since the inaugural event in 2009, the Film Festival has received more than 450 submissions. Among last year’s winning entries were films that featured breakthroughs in environmental sustainability, partnerships in STEM education, and the first medical drone delivery system.

IMPORTANT 2018 FILM FESTIVAL INFORMATION

  • Submission period: Films, in the form of video uploads, will be accepted November 13, 2017 to January 19, 2018.

  • Eligibility—All companies are eligible to participate regardless of size or location, including both members and non-members of the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship. Entry for Center members is FREE; the entry fee for non-members is $1,500.

  • Length and File Format—Films are required to be less than three minutes in length and submitted in one of the following formats: .AVI, .FLV, .MP4, .MPG, .MOV, .FLV, .WMV

    • Categories—Winners are awarded in the following categories:

      • Small Company (1 - 5,000 employees*)

      • Medium Company (5,000 - 30,000 employees*)

      • Large Company (30,000+ employees*)

      • Fan Favorite

      • Best in Show

* We define employee as a person your company employs for wages or salary; this includes Full-Time employees, Part-Time employees, Temporary employees, and Independent Contractors or Freelancers.

  • Public voting: Open to the general public, voting will take place online through the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship website from January 29 through February 19, 2018. All submissions will be narrowed down to the field down to nine finalists, three per size category; public voting determines the Fan Favorite winner.

  • Judging: The finalists will be reviewed by a panel of judges to choose a winner of each size category, as well as the Best in Show winner. Judging is based on content and storytelling, production quality, and alignment with the participating company’s overall corporate citizenship objectives.

  • Winner announced: Winners will be announced on April 8, during the 2018 International Corporate Citizenship Conference, which is being held on April 8-10, 2018, in Los Angeles, California. Finalists must be present to win.

SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY:

Click here to submit your film to the 2018 Corporate Citizenship Film Festival.

QUESTIONS:

If you have questions, please email filmfestival@bc.edu.

ABOUT BOSTON COLLEGE CENTER FOR CORPORATE CITIZENSHIP
The Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship (BCCCC) is a leader in the field of corporate citizenship helping corporate social responsibility (CSR) professionals maximize business and social value through tools and knowledge enabling them to achieve more through environmental, social, and governance investments. Founded in 1985, the Center draws on the community of professionals, original research, and resources of the Boston College Carroll School of Management. The membership-supported organization engages more than 10,000 individuals annually across its network of more than 430 member companies. For more information, visit ccc.bc.edu.

25% Discount to Companies Vs Climate Change; Miami 11/29-12/1

Mon, 11/13/2017 - 12:10pm

Two weeks left…Register Today!
Companies Vs Climate Change: USA
Use 25% discount code P100CSE when registering on the website.

Nov 29-Dec 1, 2017
Hyatt Regency Miami
“The B2B Climate Solutions Event”
Register: www.solveclimatechange.com
Contact: jason@solveclimatechange.com 

Speakers from: TD Bank, Walmart, Nikola Motor Company, Mars, Autodesk, Ingersoll Rand, NSF, Wyndham Worldwide, GM, Renewable Choice Energy, Helly Hansen, Smithfield Foods, Trucost, Danone, Interface, DSM, Walgreens, Ford, Rainforest Alliance, Biogen, Bechtel and AMD.

Here are some of the featured speakers…

Emerging Technologies, Advanced Fuels Strategies & Implementation for The Transportation Industry.

Scott Perry
Chief Operating Officer, Nikola Motor Company

Walmart’s 2025 Sustainability Goals and Project Gigaton

Zach Freeze
Senior Director, Strategic Initiatives - Sustainability, Walmart

Sustainable Supply Chain Panel

Moderator:

Joe Berman
Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility Senior Consultant
Arcadis

Panelists:

Michelle Albanese
Manager Corporate Responsibility
TD Bank
 

Alex Morgan
Global Director, Markets Transformation
Rainforest Alliance

Science-based Targets: Not All Climate Goals Are Created Equal

Justin Murrill
Senior Manager Corporate Sustainability, AMD
Nicole Labutong
Technical Manager, CDP 

Johanna Jobin
Director, Global EHS & Sustainability
Biogen

GM'S Renewable Energy Efforts and The RE100

Rob Threlkeld
Global Manager-Renewable Energy, General Motors
Driving Large-Scale Initiatives That Positively Impact Our Environment

John Kotlarczyk, Jr.
Global Director, CSR & Waste Reduction, Walgreens

Susan Lorenz-Fisher
Director of Sustainability, AmerisourceBergen

Kevin Flood, CEO, The Astor Company 

Panel: Communicating Climate Change

Moderator:
Kristina Joss
Senior Sustainability Consultant, Salterbaxter MSLGROUP 

Panelists:
Lisa Manley
Sr Director, Sustainability, Engagement & Partnerships 

Christine Needles
Senior Director, Global Communications & PR
Interface
 

Hugh Welsh
President, General Counsel & Secretary
DSM North America

Actions Being Taken By Ford To Reduce Greenhouse Gases Emitted From Products, Operations, Supply Chain And Future Business Models

Mary A. Wroten, Sr. Manager, Supply Chain Sustainability, Ford Motor Company

CSR: A Change Agent For Good
Faith Taylor
SVP CSR/Sustainability, Wyndham Worldwide

Cutting-Edge Business Performance Metrics Revealed at Sustainable Brands New Metrics ‘17

Mon, 11/13/2017 - 12:10pm

Members of the Sustainable Brands® community gather in Philadelphia to kick off the 7th annual New Metrics conference. More than 300 global senior executives are convening today through Nov 15th to unveil cutting-edge corporate practices that will enable brands to identify and measure entirely new forms of business risk and value.

New Metrics ’17 hosts more than 100 influential speakers sharing tools, advanced frameworks and case studies around quantifying environmental and social impacts and tying them to financial and business value. The event kicks off Monday with a series of orientation Boot Camps, one for each of the 4 tracks of content: Finance & Investor Relations, HR & Employee Engagement, Strategy & Operations and Supply Chain Management.  

Compelling initiatives and leading-edge business strategies presented at New Metrics ‘17 include:

  • Kevin Moss, Global Director of the Business Center at World Resources Institute, offers a thought-provoking analysis of the threats of growing consumption of material goods and shares innovative business models that can scale in a resource-constrained world.

  • Cynthia Figge, CEO and Co-founder of CSRHub and EKOS International, reveals new insights on the relationship between ESG disclosure and performance and demonstrates how Bloomberg’s first ESG app can help analyze corporate sustainability performance.

  • John Schulz, Director of Sustainability Integration at AT&T, discusses AT&T’s ambitious net positive goal – the so-called “10x” goal that will enable carbon savings for its customers that is 10 times the footprint of its own operations by 2025.

  • Kellem Emanuele, Director of Attego ESG Impact Solutions, introduces The Trust Index, a new tool that measures the presence or absence of trust and tracks changes based on the degree to which social media is positive or negative over time.

  • Geoff Kendall, CEO and Co-Founder of Future-Fit Foundation, reveals a brand-new tool: a rigorous yet practical new standard for science-based goal-setting and a performance guide for companies that want to flourish while still adding to the wellbeing of society.

  • Katie Schmitz Eulitt, Strategic Advisor and Stakeholder Outreach Lead at SASB, explores the evolution of investors’ sentiments about sustainability and share the latest developments in SASB’s growing ecosystem.

  • Ricardo Caceres, Co-Leader of the Practice of Purpose Project, and Omar Rodriguez-Vila, Assistant Professor at Georgia Tech Scheller College of Business, share the new Practice of Purpose report, set to identify the differences between traditional marketing and marketing based on social purpose.

  • EcoAct leads a lunch presentation on how carbon neutrality is being applied in new and innovative ways to incentivize clean development.

“We are excited to see New Metrics leadership continue to mature across a number of critical business functions, with fantastic applications in Sustainability, Finance, Accounting, Marketing, Supply Chain Management and Human Resources, among others.” states Dimitar Vlahov, Director of Content at Sustainable Brands. “While we recognize the adoption of New Metrics is still in its early days, we are proud to be evolving this field together with the thought leaders and leading practitioners we have with us this week.”

In addition to the regular programming at New Metrics, senior leaders from the SB Corporate Member Network will hold a separate meeting focused on key insights in New Metrics. Members from Avery Dennison, Nestlé, Pepsico, Timberland, UPS, Target, Williams-Sonoma are in attendance.  

Proud supporters of New Metrics ’17 include BASF as Principal Sponsor, Eco-Act as Premier Sponsor and 599 Labs as Major Sponsor. South Pole Group, Nature Bank, Trucost, SupplyShift, Cool Choices, Vertaeon, recycte and United Nations Global Compact are Supporting Sponsors. Additional partners include Wharton IGEL, Ceres, G&A, SustainAbility, Thrive Farmers, Sustainable Packaging Coalition, Triple Pundit and others.

For a complete list of sponsors and speakers as well as the conference schedule, please visit the conference website at www.NewMetrics17.com. Registration is still open and tickets can be purchased onsite at the Loews Philadelphia Hotel.

About Sustainable Brands

Sustainable Brands® is the premier global community of brand innovators who are shaping the future of commerce worldwide. Since 2006, our mission has been to inspire, engage and equip today’s business and brand leaders to prosper for the near and long term by leading the way to a better future. Digitally published news articles and issues-focused conversation topics, internationally known conferences and regional events, a robust e-learning library and peer-to-peer membership groups all facilitate community learning and engagement throughout the year. Sustainable Brands is a division of Sustainable Life Media headquartered in San Francisco, CA. 

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The Most In-Depth EHS & Sustainability Staffing Research Available

Mon, 11/13/2017 - 9:10am

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you will find The National Association of Environmental Management’s (NAEM) EHS & Sustainability Staffing, Structure and Budgets report extremely valuable.

As the leading professional association for environment, health and safety (EHS) and sustainability decision-makers, NAEM been collecting benchmarking data on the scope and organizational design of the EHS & Sustainability staffing structure since 2004.

NAEM developed the EHS & Sustainability Staffing, Structure and Budgets report to meet the needs of those who are responsible for designing EHS&S functions, creating staffing plans and establishing annual EHS&S budgets. This report provides in-depth data from more than 190 companies from across industry sectors to inform decisions on:

  • Reorganizing after a merger or acquisition

  • Evaluating your staffing levels relative to your company’s revenue, headcount and level of organizational risk

  • Assigning responsibilities across your EHS&S organization

  • Understanding how to integrate EHS&S into your company’s operations

  • Setting salaries for EHS&S leaders

  • Establishing annual budgets

NAEM's EHS & Sustainability Staffing, Structure and Budgets report allows you to benchmark your company's function based on industry, revenue, head count and risk profile. It also provides detailed information on the scope of EHS responsibilities, including the areas where the function is most often collaborative and the relationship between EHS and sustainability within companies today. The report features more than 60 charts on:

  • Organizational design

  • Reporting structures

  • Budgets

  • Staffing

  • Key roles and responsibilities

To learn more or to purchase a copy today, please visit EHSStaffingreport.org.

ITV Recognised as Top Community Investor

Mon, 11/13/2017 - 6:10am

Consumers Energy Receives Perfect Score in National Corporate Equality Index

Fri, 11/10/2017 - 6:05pm

Consumers Energy has received a perfect score on the 2018 Corporate Equality Index, a national survey and report on corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ workplace equality administered by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation.

Consumers Energy was one of 14 Michigan companies with a 100 percent score on the annual survey. It was also one of 17 energy providers in the U.S. to receive top marks.

“We are proud as a company to stand for diversity and inclusion in our workplace,” said Angela Thompkins, Consumers Energy’s diversity and inclusion director. “We are committed to having employees who reflect the Michigan communities we serve, and we serve our communities better by drawing on their diverse perspectives.”

Consumers Energy has taken steps to create a more inclusive environment in recent years. Those include offering benefits for eligible same-sex couples and gender transition coverage.

The energy provider also created the Pride Alliance of Consumers Energy, a resource group for LGBTQ employees. “When we started PACE, we wanted to create a welcoming environment both inside the company and in the communities we serve,” said Luis Saenz, the resource group’s chair.

Consumers Energy this year also supported the effort to enact a non-discrimination ordinance in its hometown of Jackson. The ordinance provides housing, employment and public assistance protection for members of the LGBTQ community.

Thompkins said the company will continue working to be even more inclusive.

 “We are excited to receive a perfect score from the Corporate Equality Index, but our work doesn’t stop now,” Thompkins said. “Diversity and inclusion make up a destination that we always will strive to reach.”

In all, 609 businesses across the U.S. earned a top score of 100 percent and the distinction of “Best Places to Work for LGBTQ Equality.”

For more information on the 2018 Corporate Equality Index, go to http://www.hrc.org/campaigns/corporate-equality-index.

Consumers Energy, Michigan’s largest energy provider, is the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy (NYSE: CMS), providing natural gas and/or electricity to 6.7 million of the state’s 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.

Check out Consumers Energy on Social Media Facebook | Twitter YouTube

For more information about Consumers Energy, go to www.ConsumersEnergy.com

Astellas Named a Best Place to Work for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Equality for Fourth Consecutive Year

Fri, 11/10/2017 - 3:05pm

For the fourth consecutive year, Astellas has achieved a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s (HRC) annual Corporate Equality Index (CEI). The 2018 CEI evaluates LGBTQ-related policies and practices including non-discrimination workplace protections, domestic partner benefits, transgender-inclusive health care benefits, competency programs and public engagement with the LGBTQ community. Astellas’ efforts in satisfying all of the CEI’s criteria again resulted in a 100 percent ranking and the designation as a Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality.

This comes just one week after Astellas’ first-ever Ally Week during which more than 400 Astellas employees took the “Ally Pledge” and committed to be allies and support Astellas’ LGBTQ employees.

Astellas’ benefits cover all lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) employees and their spouses or domestic partners. Coverage includes the company’s extended benefits program, StarLife Family Care Solutions. This program amplifies traditional child and elder care offerings to embrace the broader needs of employees, their spouses or partners and their families.

Astellas also supports its LGBTQ employees and their allies through its active employee resource group (ERG), known as TAO. TAO stands for Together As One. This year, TAO hosted an informative and impactful training session for allies of the LGBTQ community by Out & Equal Workplace Advocates and had more than 400 Astellas employees take the “Ally Pledge” during Astellas’ inaugural Ally Week (Oct. 23-27) held at the Astellas U.S. Headquarters. In June, Astellas also celebrated with millions in downtown Chicago and on social media by participating for the eighth consecutive year in the annual Chicago Pride Parade. Astellas flew the pride flag outside its Americas headquarters during the month of June – LGBTQ Pride Month – and again on National Coming Out Day – Oct. 11, 2017. In addition, TAO joined Astellas’ other ERGs in a 5K walk/run during the National Sales Forum in Las Vegas, where TAO raised funds to support the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, a national nonprofit committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of LGBTQ people through impact litigation, education and public policy work.

“Achieving a perfect score on the Corporate Equality Index for the fourth consecutive year highlights Astellas’ commitment to be a diverse and inclusive workplace,” said Linda Friedman, executive vice president, general counsel, and TAO’s executive sponsor. “We strive to be an industry leader for the inclusion of all employees and this recognition highlights that commitment.”

For more information on Astellas, visit www.astellas.us.

About HRC Corporate Equality Index
The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is the educational arm of America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.

About Astellas
Astellas is a pharmaceutical company dedicated to improving the health of people around the world through the provision of innovative and reliable pharmaceutical products. For more information on Astellas, please visit our website at www.astellas.us. For more information on Astellas, please visit our website at www.astellas.us. You can also follow us on Twitter at @AstellasUS, Facebook at www.facebook.com/AstellasUS or LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/astellas-pharma.

LeasePlan Launches Electric Vehicle Pilot Program for Corporates at UN Climate Change Conference (COP23) in Bonn

Fri, 11/10/2017 - 9:05am

(GlobeNewswire) - LeasePlan Corporation N.V., a global leader in fleet management, will today announce at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP23) in Bonn, Germany, the launch of its electric vehicle pilot program for corporate companies. The launch of the pilot program marks another step in LeasePlan's ambition to achieve net zero emissions from its total fleet by 2030.

LeasePlan's new electric vehicle pilot program is designed to make it as easy as possible for the growing number of companies that want to make the switch to low-emission vehicles. The pilot is fully scalable: customers choose how many electric vehicles form part of the pilot. LeasePlan will also facilitate the implementation of charging infrastructure at customers' offices and employees' homes. Wherever possible, LeasePlan will work with partners to ensure the charging infrastructure is supplied with 100% renewable energy. Carbon offsetting will also be available for the non-electric cars that do not form part of the pilot. The full pilot will be available in Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal and the UK from December, with a further rollout planned for Italy, Spain and Sweden in the first quarter of 2018.

CEO Tex Gunning: "We see an increasing demand for electric vehicle fleets from corporate companies that want to lower their overall emissions and help tackle climate change. As part of our 2030 Sustainability Strategy, LeasePlan is fully committed to helping these customers make the switch. We're therefore delighted to be launching our electric vehicle pilot program for large corporate organizations here at the UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn. Making the switch to an electric fleet is one of the simplest ways for companies to rapidly lower their emissions and help tackle climate change - and we are committed to facilitating those companies that want to make the transition."

Sustainability strategy
Today's announcement marks another milestone in LeasePlan's sustainability strategy, which aims to achieve net zero emissions from the total LeasePlan fleet by 2030. Key elements in the strategy include educating customers on What's next in low-emission vehicles; facilitating the uptake of low-emission vehicles with attractive customer propositions developed by the LeasePlan Electric Vehicle Experience Centre; leading the development of a sophisticated second-hand car market of well-maintained, high-quality lease vehicles; and transitioning LeasePlan's own employee fleet to an electric vehicle fleet by 2021. LeasePlan is also a founding partner of EV100, a new global business initiative designed to fast-track the uptake of electric vehicles and infrastructure, launched by The Climate Group around the UN General Assembly in September.

Check out the LeasePlan Newsroom here
Check out the video with LeasePlan SVP Commercial Berno Kleinherenbrink here

Media contact
Harmen van der Molen
Tel.: +31 6 5073 2424
Email.: media@leaseplancorp.com

About LeasePlan
LeasePlan is one of the world's leading fleet management companies, with 1.7 million vehicles under management in over 30 countries. Our core business involves managing the entire vehicle life-cycle for our clients, taking care of everything from purchasing, insurance and maintenance to car re-marketing. With over 50 years' experience, we are a trusted partner for our corporate, SME, private and mobility service clients. Our mission is to provide what's next in mobility via an 'Any car, Anytime, Anywhere' service - so you can focus on what's next for you. Find out more at www.leaseplan.com.

Over 15% Alternative-Fuel Vehicles in EMMS Participants’ Fleets in 2016

Fri, 11/10/2017 - 9:05am

Posts are clearly taking the road to low-carbon delivery. Since 2012, the total number of vehicles in postal operations has increased by 77,000 (+13%), while the total number of alternative-fuel vehicles has increased by 31,000 (+42%). In 2016, alternative-fuel vehicles account for 15.7% of the EMMS group’s combined fleet, compared to 12.5% in 2012. Between 2015 and 2016, the total number of vehicles increased by 10,000, while the number of alternative-fuel vehicles increased by 12,000. This reflects a decrease in both the number of non-alternative-fuel vehicles and also traditional bicycles, and demonstrates participants’ ongoing efforts to increase the proportion of alternative-fuel vehicle models within their fleets.

Holger Winklbauer, CEO of IPC says: “Today, many participants in our programme are increasing the number of electric vehicles in their delivery fleets. The number of electric vehicles reported by the EMMS participants increased by 3,000 between 2015 and 2016, such that electric models now account for 29% of all alternative-fuel vehicles and 4.6% of the total vehicle fleet. In comparison, globally only 0.2% of all cars in circulation are electric vehicles. This clearly shows that our participants are leading the way when it comes to investing in low-carbon delivery.”

Fuel and electricity savings continue to present a solid business case

Fuel consumption and electricity use are the most significant contributors to the postal sector’s carbon emissions, and their reduction presents opportunities for participants to realise considerable financial gains. Over the eight years of the programme, the group has achieved an accumulated saving of 1.3m tonnes of carbon emissions from own transport. Using a conservative conversion factor for diesel, this equates to 460m litres of fuel saved, and represents a financial saving of €403m (US$446m).

When looking at the savings made through the reductions in the group’s electricity consumption since the start of the programme, decreasing from 9.95 TWh in 2008 to 7.77 TWh in 2016 (an accumulated saving of 11.6 TWh over eight years), this corresponds to a saving of €1,081m (US$1,196m).

The total savings made in electricity use and fuel consumption amount to €1,484m (US$1,642).

Carbon management remains on top of postal leadership agenda

Following consistent annual improvements in the EMMS group’s score since 2008, the group is on track to achieve the 90% Carbon Management Proficiency target before 2020. In 2016, EMMS participants achieved an average of 87% (2015: 85%). This represents an increase of 31 percentage points since 2008, equating to an annual average increase of 3.9 percentage points.

Winklbauer continues: “While we recognise that achieving further improvements becomes even more challenging as participants attain higher scores, with only a further three percentage points required to reach the target we are optimistic that the group can achieve this goal in the next four years. Indeed, the group’s 2.2 percentage point improvement between 2015 and 2016 exceeds the 0.8 percentage point rate that is required to reach the 2020 target within the next four years.”

Carbon management efforts pay off well in continued CO2 emissions reductions

Having reached the 20% absolute Scope 1 and 2 emissions reduction target in 2014 – six years ahead of schedule – the group continues to translate their improved carbon management into further emissions reductions. The group’s emissions have decreased by an impressive 26.9% since the start of the programme, from 8,830,000 tonnes in 2008 to 6,458,000 tonnes in 2016. This equates to aggregated savings of more than 12.7m tonnes of carbon emissions since 2008, which is the equivalent of the CO2 emissions from over 1.3m US homes’ energy use in 2015.

Efficiency target (2013 – 2025): impressive reductions continue per parcel, mail takes off as well

Having achieved the 2020 reduction target for total volumes of Scope 1 and 2 carbon emissions in 2014, a new group target (approved by the Science Based Targets (SBT) steering committee) was introduced in the same year: to achieve a 20% reduction in emissions per letter mail and per parcel by 2025, from a 2013 baseline. The group’s letter mail delivery efficiency has improved from 36.9 grams of CO2 per item in 2013, to 35.8 grams per item in 2016.

Parcel delivery efficiency has seen a significant improvement from the baseline year, with the group reporting 436.0 grams of CO2 per item in 2016 compared to 505.0 grams per item in 2013. This represents a 14% decrease in emissions per parcel in just three years.

Despite the year-on-year decline in letter mail volumes, delivery efficiency has improved from the 2013 baseline as a result of the group reducing emissions associated with letter mail delivery by almost 1m tonnes. Nonetheless, the continuing decline in letter mail volumes presents a growing challenge for participants in improving letter mail delivery efficiency.

Meanwhile, the growth of e-commerce is driving a rapid increase in parcel volumes. As a result, while the group’s emissions associated with parcel delivery increased between 2015 and 2016, the number of parcels delivered increased at a much greater rate.

IPC published the 2017 IPC Postal Sector Sustainability Report at the occasion of its Board meeting in London, United Kingdom. The online version of the ninth annual Postal Sector Sustainability Report can be consulted here. It also includes 16 best practice cases showcasing particularly successful environmental initiatives taken by EMMS participants. More information on IPC’s Sustainability Programme can be found here. For a full download of the report please click here.

-END-

About International Post Corporation
International Post Corporation (IPC) is the leading service provider of the global postal industry that provides leadership by driving service quality, interoperability and business-critical intelligence to support posts in defending existing business and expanding into new growth areas. It is a cooperative association of 24 member postal operators in Asia Pacific, Europe and North America. IPC’s solutions and services are used by over 180 posts worldwide. Since 1989 IPC has set standards for upgrading quality and service performance and developed technological solutions that help members enhance service for international letters, packets and parcels. IPC engages in industry research, creates business-critical intelligence, provides a range of platforms and programmes for member post CEOs and senior management to exchange best practices and discuss strategy. IPC also manages the system for incentive-based payments between postal operators.

* The 20 participants in IPC’s EMMS programme are: An Post (Ireland), Australia Post (Australia), Austrian Post (Austria), bpost (Belgium), Correios (Brazil), Correos (Spain), CTT Portugal Post (Portugal), Deutsche Post DHL Group (Germany), Le Groupe La Poste (France), New Zealand Post Group (New Zealand), POST Luxembourg (Luxembourg), Poste Italiane (Italy), Posten Norge (Norway), Posti (Finland), PostNL (The Netherlands), PostNord (Denmark & Sweden), Royal Mail Group Plc (United Kingdom), South African Post Office (South Africa), Swiss Post (Switzerland), United States Postal Service (United States)

Chevron and Gibson Dunn Face Potential Criminal Probe Over $2m Witness Bribery Plot in Ecuador Pollution Case

Thu, 11/09/2017 - 3:02pm

Amazon indigenous groups and farmer communities in Ecuador have requested that the U.S. Department of Justice open a criminal investigation of Chevron and the Gibson Dunn law firm after uncovering a witness bribery scheme designed by the company to fabricate evidence to evade payment of a $9.5 billion environmental liability, according to a letter sent to several top DOJ officials and made public today.

The referral letter – sent to the Chief of the Department of Justice (DOJ) fraud section and the U.S. attorneys in three major cities -- describes how in 2012 Chevron gave an illegal benefits package totaling at least $2 million to a former Ecuadorian judge, Alberto Guerra. Guerra, who admitted to Chevron prior to accepting the payments that he had engaged in numerous corrupt acts in Ecuador, later testified under oath that he lied repeatedly before a U.S. federal court as part of the company’s strategy to evade paying the Ecuador environmental liability, which was confirmed by the country’s highest court in 2013.

A copy of the DOJ letter can be read in full here.

Guerra’s lies before the U.S. federal court, in Chevron’s controversial non-jury civil “racketeering” or RICO case, led to a contested finding in 2014 by U.S. trial judge Lewis A. Kaplan that the Ecuador judgment was obtained by fraud. That decision was contradicted by eight appellate judges in Ecuador who unanimously affirmed Chevron’s liability, including the entirety of country’s Supreme Court.

Canada’s Supreme Court also rejected Kaplan’s findings when Chevron tried to use it to block efforts by Ecuadorian indigenous peoples to seize company assets in that country. In all, the Ecuadorians have won three unanimous appellate decisions in Canada against Chevron, all of which have ignored Kaplan’s findings.

“Undisputed facts indicate that Chevron used Guerra’s false testimony to commit extensive fraud on the indigenous people of Ecuador that appears to have been planned at the highest levels of the company,” said Patricio Salazar, the lead Ecuadorian lawyer for the affected communities. “The United States Department of Justice must use its full investigative power to gather all relevant facts related to Guerra’s false testimony and if appropriate, hold those responsible fully accountable.”

(For background on Chevron’s RICO fraud and the erroneous findings in the decision, see this 33-page report.)

Among those cited in the letter as orchestrating the Chevron fraud are CEO John Watson, who is retiring in January; Chevron General Counsel R. Hewitt Pate; and Chevron outside counsel Randy Mastro, Reed Brodsky, Andres Rivero, and Avi Weitzman, all of the Gibson Dunn law firm. Gibson Dunn has deployed hundreds of lawyers to fight the indigenous groups and has reaped an estimated $1 billon in fees from Chevron for doing so -- thought to be the largest fee in history paid by a corporation for litigation defense.

In the summer of 2013, Chevron lawyers from the Gibson Dunn firm coached Guerra for 53 days before he testified falsely that the Ecuador trial judgment against Chevron was “ghostwritten” by lawyers for the plaintiffs. The story later was proven false by a forensic examination performed by one of the world’s leading computer experts, J. Christopher Racich.

The DOJ letter also recounts how Chevron provided Guerra and his extended family with free health care, a housing allowance, and the payment of fees to secure family members asylum so they could legalize their immigration status in the United States. Chevron also paid Guerra’s personal income taxes as part of the deal.

Chevron lawyers led by Mastro of the Gibson Dunn law firm flew to Chicago to craft the first version of Guerra’s false testimony in 2012 at the same time they were negotiating the benefits package with him, which provided a salary at least 24 times higher than what Guerra had been earning in Ecuador, according to the letter. Guerra insisted on meeting in Chicago because one of his children lived there, said Salazar.

Chevron’s liability in Ecuador stems from judicial findings that the oil abandoned 1,000 open-air toxic waste pits gouged out of the jungle floor and systematically discharged billions of gallons of toxic oil waste into rivers and streams relied on by the local population for their drinking water and for fishing.  Cancer rates in the area have exploded and at least hundreds, possibly thousands, of indigenous persons and farmers are believed to have died as a result, according to data in independent health studies.

Chevron operated in Ecuador under the Texaco brand from 1964 to 1992 and reaped an estimated $25 billion in profits over the life of its operating contract. It was the exclusive operator of six major fields covering parts of a 1,500 sq. mile swath of rainforest that once was home to five thriving indigenous nationalities, all of whom are now plaintiffs in the lawsuit.

Even though the environmental damages claims were filed in the United States in 1993, Chevron insisted the trial be held in Ecuador and accepted jurisdiction there as a way to avoid a jury of impartial fact finders in its home country. After the case was shifted to Ecuador by a U.S. judge, Chevron challenged jurisdiction anyway and began to sell off its assets in the country. Company officials, led by General Counsel Charles James, threatened the indigenous groups with “a lifetime of litigation” if they persisted.

The DOJ letter – signed by Steven R. Donziger, the American lawyer for the Ecuadorians and the primary target of a Chevron retaliation campaign -- also was sent to the U.S. Attorneys in offices located in areas with a strong connection to the Chevron scheme. Donziger said the Guerra fraud appears to have been planned in company headquarters near San Francisco after previous company attempts to prove due process violations in the case based on an expert report and other issues were rejected by Ecuador’s courts.

“It is our belief that Chevron’s exorbitant witness payments to Guerra had the ultimate aim of deceiving courts around the world to block enforcement of the Ecuador judgment, thereby consigning thousands of vulnerable indigenous people to a lifetime of suffering and likely death,” said Donziger, who is part of the international legal team representing the villagers. “In our view, Chevron’s approach to this entire litigation is based on intimidation and deceit and its goal is to obtain impunity for environmental crimes. The cost to the people of Ecuador from Chevron’s unethical and even illegal strategy is enormous.”

Even though Chevron has used at least 2,000 lawyers as part of its retaliation campaign against Donziger and the affected communities, the company’s Guerra “fraud” narrative has completely fallen apart in recent months.  

Several media outlets (see here and here) reported that Guerra admitted under oath in a related international arbitration proceeding that he lied repeatedly before the U.S. federal court about key facts that formed the basis of the court’s findings. Guerra’s claim that the lawyers for the indigenous groups “ghostwrote” the judgment against Chevron was debunked by a forensic examination of the Ecuadorian trial judge’s office computers by Racich, as explained here.

The Racich report found the Ecuador trial judge created and saved a Word document that became the judgment more than 400 times on his computer in the weeks prior to its issuance, and that it was not provided by lawyers for the indigenous groups on a flash drive as Guerra had testified.

Two Chevron lawyers in the Ecuador matter, Andres Rivero and Yohi Ackerman, admitted in 2012 that they gave Guerra $18,000 in cash out of a suitcase in Ecuador to enlist his initial cooperation. Ackerman later gave Guerra another $10,000 in cash for a handful of documents while Rivero promised he could receive at least $1 million more from Chevron if he “flipped” the trial judge who wrote the decision against the company – essentially another bribe attempt by Chevron using Guerra as the intermediary, said Donziger.

Chevron admitted during pre-trial discovery in the U.S. case that it paid for Guerra to fly from Ecuador to Chicago to negotiate his personal services contract that would guarantee the ongoing payments for his testimony. Upon arrival in Chicago, the former judge made several crass comments that suggested he was motivated to lie by greed – comments such as “money talks but gold screams” and “couldn’t you add a few zeroes” after the Chevron lawyers made an offer. The comments were recorded by Chevron’s investigators and released as part of the court process.

The Chevron payments to Guerra appear to be ongoing, said Donziger.

Chevron declined to contest the facts of its pollution in Ecuador during the retaliatory U.S. “racketeering” case where it made the false bribery allegation, essentially admitting its guilt in the underlying case, said Donziger. Chevron also dropped all damages claims on the eve of the RICO trial to avoid a jury of impartial fact finders.

(For background on Kaplan’s flawed RICO ruling, see here and this new report – “Chevron’s RICO Fraud”. The report documents the many ways in which the company fabricated and distorted evidence to try to taint the Ecuador judgment.)

Background

Two respected legal commentators – Aaron Page of Forum Nobis and Michelle Harrison of EarthRights International -- recently published articles (here and here) concluding that the Chevron witness payments to Guerra not only were wrong, but “criminal” and “illegal”. Those articles follow the recent publication of a comprehensive report documenting how Chevron fabricated and distorted evidence before U.S. courts to evade paying the environmental judgment.

Seventeen human rights and environmental groups and 19 international law scholars recently filed separate briefs attacking the company for using false evidence and violating international law.  (Background on those briefs is here and here.)

Two federal judges from the United States have sanctioned the Gibson Dunn team for harassing U.S.-based lawyers for the Ecuadorians, while a California state court fined Chevron for filing a frivolous lawsuit against an American lawyer who formerly represented the Ecuadorian villagers. Separately, in echoes of Chevron’s strategy in the Ecuador case, the High Court of London recently sanctioned a lawyer at Gibson Dunn for fabricating evidence to frame a political opponent of the leader of the African nation of Djibouti, one of the firm’s major clients.

UPS And NYSERDA To Convert UPS Diesel Delivery Trucks In NYC To Electric

Thu, 11/09/2017 - 3:02pm

  UPS (NYSE: UPS) and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) today announced that new technology will be developed to convert UPS package delivery vehicles from diesel to electric. UPS and Unique Electric Solutions LLC (UES LLC) will design, build, test and make the conversions. The project supports Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s aggressive goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent by 2030 by replacing diesel vehicles with clean technology.

“Public-private partnerships help push innovation forward and transform industries,” said Carlton Rose, President, global fleet maintenance and engineering, UPS. “This program will help UPS develop and deploy electric delivery trucks faster and more affordably. Because they are cleaner and quieter, electric vehicles are ideal for dense urban environments like New York City and are a critical part of our strategy for the future.”

NYSERDA is providing $500,000 in funding to develop and test the conversion system. If successful, the Bronx-based project is expected to bring a production version of the converted truck to the streets of New York City by Spring 2018. In addition to producing a new, cost-effective all-electric conversion kit, the project will deliver a blueprint for converting up to three UPS vehicles a day. This could lead to the conversion of up to 1,500 UPS delivery trucks, which is about 66% of UPS’s NYC fleet, operating in New York City by 2022.

Alicia Barton, President and CEO, NYSERDA said, “This project is a prime example of the State’s investment in new and innovative technology that can help us meet Governor Cuomo’s nation-leading clean energy goals. I applaud UPS and Unique Electric Solutions for their leadership in developing this system that can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and has tremendous potential to be used by the entire delivery industry.”

The conversions will be based on unique electric vehicle technology developed by Unique Electric Solutions. The core system features a 225kW Switched Reluctance Motor (SRM) with a high voltage back bone optimized for the duty cycle of UPS delivery trucks. SRMs are simpler, cheaper and better suited for electric vehicles over conventional induction motors and do not rely on the use of magnets made from imported rare earth metals like permanent magnet motors do. Overall, the UES SRM propulsion system provides more miles per battery charge, reducing charging times and increasing energy efficiency up to 20%.  

This project is part of UPS’s commitment to helping cities and states around the world reduce carbon and other tailpipe emissions as urban areas and e-commerce grow. UPS operates more than 770 electric or hybrid electric vehicles in urban settings around the world. They are part of a fleet of more than 8,500 alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles worldwide. UPS recently set a goal that by 2020 one in four vehicles purchased annually will use alternative fuels or advanced technology. The company has invested more than $750 million in alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles and fueling stations globally since 2009.

About NYSERDA
NYSERDA, a public benefit corporation, offers objective information and analysis, innovative programs, technical expertise, and funding to help New Yorkers increase energy efficiency, save money, use renewable energy, and reduce reliance on fossil fuels. NYSERDA professionals work to protect the environment and create clean-energy jobs. NYSERDA has been developing partnerships to advance innovative energy solutions in New York State since 1975. To learn more about NYSERDA’s programs and funding opportunities, visit nyserda.ny.gov or follow us on TwitterFacebookYouTube, or Instagram.

About Unique Electric Solutions (UES)
UES LLC produces and upfits environmentally friendly electric propulsion and power systems for commercial trucks which reduce total cost of ownership. With 25+ years of know-how and the world’s largest delivery fleet, United Parcel Service (UPS) as its partner-customer, the Company is commercializing two products; a Class 5-7 all-electric drive system and an anti-idling system for Class 3-8 vehicles. UES leverages its proprietary  control algorithms, vehicle controllers and battery management systems to enable the integration of  reliable, efficient and cost effective vehicle systems.  UES is currently focused on fleet operations in NYC while eyeing expansion to other large urban areas by 2019. To learn more about UES visit www.uesmfg.com.

About UPS
UPS (NYSE: UPS) is a global leader in logistics, offering a broad range of solutions including the transportation of packages and freight; the facilitation of international trade, and the deployment of advanced technology to more efficiently manage the world of business. UPS is committed to operating more sustainably – for customers, the environment and the communities we serve around the world. Learn more about our efforts at sustainability.ups.com. Headquartered in Atlanta, UPS serves more than 220 countries and territories worldwide. The company can be found on the Web at ups.com® or pressroom.ups.com and its corporate blog can be found at Longitudes.ups.com. To get UPS news direct, follow @UPS_News on Twitter.

SC Johnson Earns 13th Perfect Score on Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index

Thu, 11/09/2017 - 3:02pm

Today, SC Johnson announced it has earned a perfect score of 100 percent on the 2018 Corporate Equality Index (CEI) survey and report. This honor marks the 13th time the company has earned a perfect score and its 16th year of recognition on the workplace equality list. The CEI is the nation’s leading benchmarking tool and report on corporate policies and practices pertinent to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) community. The ranking, survey and report are administered by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation.

“We are honored to receive a perfect score for the 13th time from the Human Rights Campaign,” said Fisk Johnson, Chairman and CEO of SC Johnson. “This recognition underscores our commitment to cultivating an environment that will retain, attract and inspire the very best people.”

Companies achieving a CEI rating of 100 percent are given the distinction of “Best Places to Work for LGBTQ Equality.” For companies to be recognized and rated highly by the HRC they must have established sexual orientation and gender identity non-discrimination protections for employees, domestic partner benefits, transgender-inclusive health care benefits, competency programs and public engagement with the LGBTQ community. To learn more about SC Johnson’s diversity and inclusion initiatives, please visit the SC Johnson website.

The 2018 CEI survey and report rated 947 companies, which were evaluated in six main categories: Equal Employment Opportunity Policy, Workplace Non-Discrimination Policy, Spousal and Partner Benefits, Transgender-Inclusive Benefits, Organizational LGBT Competency, and Public Engagement. For more information on the 2018 Corporate Equality Index, or to download a free copy of the report, visit www.hrc.org/cei.

About SC Johnson
SC Johnson is a family company dedicated to innovative, high-quality products, excellence in the workplace and a long-term commitment to the environment and the communities in which it operates. Based in the USA, the company is one of the world's leading manufacturers of household cleaning products and products for home storage, air care, pest control and shoe care, as well as professional products. It markets such well-known brands as GLADE®, KIWI®, OFF!®, PLEDGE®, RAID®, SCRUBBING BUBBLES®, SHOUT®, WINDEX® and ZIPLOC® in the U.S. and beyond, with brands marketed outside the U.S. including AUTAN®, TANA®, BAMA®, BAYGON®, BRISE®, KABIKILLER®, KLEAR®, MR MUSCLE® and RIDSECT®. The 131-year-old company, which generates $10 billion in sales, employs approximately 13,000 people globally and sells products in virtually every country around the world. www.scjohnson.com

About the Human Rights Campaign Foundation
The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is the educational arm of America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve LGBTQ equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBTQ citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.

Smithfield Foods Supports Veterans with $25,000 Contribution to Warrior Canine Connection

Thu, 11/09/2017 - 12:02pm

The Smithfield Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Smithfield Foods, Inc., is pleased to announce it has joined forces with the Warrior Canine Connection (WCC), a pioneering organization that utilizes a Mission Based Trauma Recovery therapy model to help service members and veterans reconnect with their families and communities. Smithfield’s $25,000 donation will help fund a new Puppy Enrichment Center where future service dogs begin their training at WCC’s Healing Quarters in Boyds, Maryland.

With this gift, Smithfield is supporting WCC’s efforts to enlist recovering warriors in a therapeutic mission of learning to train service dogs. Through this program, warriors interact with dogs from birth through adulthood, training them to become service dogs for fellow veterans. Warrior trainers benefit from the engagement with the dogs, while veterans receive the support that a service dog provides.

"Warrior Canine Connection has worked with more than 4,000 wounded veterans receiving treatment for post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury to provide a non-pharmaceutical intervention that mitigates symptoms associated with their injuries,” said WCC Founder and Executive Director Rick Yount. “As a nonprofit organization, we can't do it alone, and we are incredibly grateful that Smithfield has stepped forward to help address the mental health and well-being of our nation's veterans.”

WCC’s new comprehensive Healing Quarters provides a tranquil, safe, healing environment to serve thousands more wounded veterans and their families. Smithfield’s contribution enables WCC to increase the number of dogs available for therapeutic service dog training and placement.

"The connection with a service dog offers physiological and psychological benefits to both the warriors who train these animals and their fellow veterans with disabilities who utilize service dogs,” said Dennis Treacy, president of the Smithfield Foundation. “The compounding, positive impact on bettering the lives of those who have given so much to our country – a core focus of our charitable giving and philanthropic efforts at Smithfield – is why we are proud to support this program.”

Smithfield has a long history of supporting veterans and military families through volunteerism, food and charitable donations and partnerships. In the past five years, Smithfield has donated more than $3 million to Operation Homefront through its Eckrich® brand. Last year, Smithfield introduced two new veterans’ initiatives – Operation 4000! and Smithfield Salutes. Smithfield Salutes is a Veterans Employee Resource Group that aims to make the transition from military to civilian life a seamless one. Through Operation 4000!, Smithfield is working to employ 4,000 veterans—10 percent of its U.S. workforce—by 2020.

To learn more about Smithfield’s support of veterans, visit smithfieldfoods.com/veterans.

For more information about Warrior Canine Connection, visit warriorcanineconnection.org.

About Smithfield Foods

Smithfield Foods is a $15 billion global food company and the world's largest pork processor and hog producer. In the United States, the company is also the leader in numerous packaged meats categories with popular brands including SmithfieldⓇ, EckrichⓇ, Nathan's FamousⓇ, FarmlandⓇ, ArmourⓇ, John MorrellⓇ, Cook'sⓇ, KretschmarⓇ, GwaltneyⓇ, Curly'sⓇ, MargheritaⓇ, CarandoⓇ, Healthy OnesⓇ, KrakusⓇ, MorlinyⓇ and BerlinkiⓇ. Smithfield Foods is committed to providing good food in a responsible way and maintains robust animal care, community involvement, employee safety, environmental and food safety and quality programs. For more information, visit www.smithfieldfoods.com.

About Warrior Canine Connection

Warrior Canine Connection is a pioneering organization that utilizes a Mission Based Trauma Recovery model to empower returning combat Veterans who have sustained physical and psychological wounds while in service to our country. Based on the concept of Warriors helping Warriors, WCC’s therapeutic service dog training program is designed to mitigate symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, and other challenges, while giving injured combat Veterans a sense of purpose, help in the reintegration back into their families and communities, and promote consideration of a potential career path as a service dog trainer. For more information, visit warriorcanineconnection.org

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MyFarms Announced as Field to Market’s Newest Technology Partner

Thu, 11/09/2017 - 12:02pm

Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture today announced the integration of the Fieldprint® Platform's sustainability metrics and algorithms into the MyFarms software platform. As one of the Alliance’s newest qualified data management partners, MyFarms now offers commodity farmers with a seamless solution for measuring their sustainability performance and operational efficiency. This integration is made possible through Field to Market’s Fieldprint® Application Programming Interface, which connects seven sustainability metrics and associated algorithms from the Fieldprint Platform directly into the MyFarms software.

“We are pleased to be recognized as a qualified data management partner by Field to Market and look forward to equipping supply chains with farmer friendly tools that convert sustainability data into smarter farming decisions. With this integration, MyFarms stands a ready and willing partner to help global supply chains make authentic sustainability claims,” said Chris Fennig, Managing Director of MyFarms, LLC.

Ingredion Incorporated, a leading global ingredients solutions company, will deploy the integration with their grain farmers, pledging to scale sustainability measurement across 180,000 acres by 2020.

“We are excited to see MyFarms and Field to Market partner together in helping our grain farmers access robust sustainability analytics and partner with Ingredion in meeting customer demands for enhanced supply chain transparency around the sustainability of our ingredients,” said Andrew Utterback, Manager, Commodities Purchasing, Ingredion.

With this integration, farmers now have another choice in documenting and demonstrating their sustainability performance using the common measurement framework offered by the Fieldprint Platform. Developed through a multi-stakeholder, consensus driven process, this outcomes-based and metrics-driven sustainability measurement platform is supported by more than 130 organizations across the food and agriculture industry.

“The integration of Field to Market’s sustainability metrics and algorithms into the MyFarms software platform offers farmers another choice in accessing the industry’s most accepted and recognized sustainability measurement framework,” said Rod Snyder, president of Field to Market. “With companies like Ingredion relying on MyFarms for the implementation of their sustainable sourcing initiatives, we look forward to a robust partnership that will help Field to Market reach our goal of engaging 50 million acres in our Supply Chain Sustainability Program.”

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About Field to Market

Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture brings together a diverse group of grower organizations; agribusinesses; food, beverage, restaurant and retail companies; conservation groups; universities and public sector partners to focus on defining, measuring and advancing the sustainability of food, fiber and fuel production. Field to Market is comprised of more than 130 members representing all facets of the U.S. agricultural supply chain, with members employing more than 5 million people and representing combined revenues totaling over $1.5 trillion. For more information, visit www.fieldtomarket.org and follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/FieldtoMarket.

Your Nature-Inspired Climate Change Solution May Be Worth $100,000

Thu, 11/09/2017 - 12:02pm

Biomimicry has been called “an antidote to despair” because of its simple premise - that the sustainability issues we are wrestling with can be addressed if we study how living organisms have adapted to survive and thrive over the long haul. With the effects of global warming evident all around us, creating radically sustainable products, services, or systems that help communities become more resilient to climate change has never been more crucial.

That is why the Biomimicry Institute and the Ray C. Anderson Foundation are issuing a call to action to look to our planet’s living systems to create viable solutions to the current climate crisis. Select teams will be invited to join the world’s only Biomimicry Accelerator to help them develop their innovations and bring them to market, with the help of the grand prize—the $100,000 Ray C. Anderson Foundation Ray of Hope Prize®.

"Having partnered with The Biomimicry Institute on this Challenge for several years now, I've learned that the most remarkable designs and ideas can come from the most unexpected people,” said Ray C. Anderson Foundation Executive Director John Lanier. “If you think that you don't have what it takes to enter this Challenge, or that all of the valuable innovations have already been made, I'm going to bet that you are wrong. Nature can inspire us all."

“We all have the ability to learn from nature by observing the world around us. We help participants in this Challenge hone this innate ability through training, tools, and mentorship and apply it to solving one of the many issues we face due to climate change,” said Megan Schuknecht, director of design challenges at the Biomimicry Institute.

When you join the Biomimicry Global Design Challenge, your team has access to:

  • The world’s most robust collection of biomimicry resources

  • Advice from experts and mentors

  • Invitation-only accelerator program with biomimicry and business bootcamp. All accelerator teams will be connected to partners and investors who can provide technical support, seed funding, and incubation support.

  • The chance to be featured in high profile media

Each year, one Accelerator team is awarded the Ray C. Anderson Foundation’s $100,000 Ray of Hope Prize to help them bring their design to market. 

In October 2017, the Ray of Hope Prize was awarded to NexLoop, who developed a water management system for urban food producers inspired by the way living systems capture, store, and distribute water. The current Accelerator cohort includes innovations such as a reforestation system inspired by winged seeds, bromeliads, and forest leaf litter, a device inspired by baleen whales and African violet leaves that collects fine particulate matter in dense urban environments, and a circulatory system-inspired heating and cooling system. Learn more about past Accelerator participants and their innovations here.

In addition to participants, the Biomimicry Institute engages hundreds of individuals as mentors, judges, sponsors, outreach partners, and subject matter experts. If you are interested in volunteering to support the challenge, please contact challenge@biomimicry.org.

The Ray C. Anderson Foundation has pledged $1.5 million over four years to support the Biomimicry Global Design Challenge, a multi-year effort to crowdsource, support, and seed promising innovations inspired by nature. Each year, the Institute and Foundation together will award the $100,000 Ray of Hope Prize to the most viable prototype that embodies the radical sustainability principles of biomimicry.

Registration is now open for the 2017-18 round of the Biomimicry Global Design Challenge. Individuals and teams can learn more about last year’s finalists and register for the next round at challenge.biomimicry.org.

About the Biomimicry Institute
The Biomimicry Institute is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that empowers people to seek nature-inspired solutions for a healthy planet. http://www.biomimicry.org

About Ray C. Anderson Foundation
The Ray C. Anderson Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that seeks to promote a sustainable society by supporting and funding educational and project-based initiatives that advance knowledge and innovation in sustainability. http://www.raycandersonfoundation.org/rayofhopeprize

UPS Launches eBike Solution in Pittsburgh

Wed, 11/08/2017 - 3:00pm

UPS (NYSE: UPS) today announced the launch of an eBike that will deliver packages in Pittsburgh, Pa. The electrically-assisted tricycle will help reduce carbon emissions in addition to traffic, noise and air quality challenges in Pittsburgh. The deployment is part of UPS’s Cycle Solutions and the company’s Rolling Laboratory, which tests alternative fuels and advanced technology vehicles.

“Working with cities like Pittsburgh to provide them with a delivery solution that helps reduce congestion and emissions and improve air and noise quality is the latest example of how to meet the needs of today’s cities,” said Barb Jaram, UPS Mid Atlantic District president. “We have many vehicle options when it comes to reducing our impact on the environment including our cycle solutions that provide greater mobility and fewer emissions.”

Pittsburgh residents joined the City of Pittsburgh’s Karina Ricks, mobility and infrastructure director and Grant Ervin, chief resilience officer with UPS representatives at a UPS facility to debut the eBike. The eBike route is planned to go around downtown Pittsburgh.

“In Pittsburgh we welcome solutions like the UPS eBike to reduce traffic congestion and tackle urban growth,” said Pittsburgh Mayor, William Peduto. “We encourage companies like UPS to work with our residents and businesses to create innovative solutions to the complex urban challenges we face every day. This effort aligns perfectly with the ONEPGH Resilience Strategy and our efforts to make Pittsburgh a thriving 21st Century city that is livable for all."

The success of the eBike was first demonstrated in 2012 in Hamburg, Germany, where UPS focused on developing a new and sustainable method of delivering goods to urban areas. UPS placed four containers at central locations in the city for interim storage of packages for UPS drivers. From these points, deliveries were made on foot or with specialized electronically-assisted cargo tricycles that ease traffic congestion and reduce emissions each working day. Due to the success of the pilot, the Hamburg program was already extended. That model serves as a prototype for the company’s new eBike in Pittsburgh, Pa.

The eBike is equipped with battery-powered electric motors that makes it possible to cover longer distances than traditional bikes, carry substantial loads and navigate hills and other terrain. Maximum energy efficiency is achieved when combining battery power and human power simultaneously. The eBike can be operated solely on battery power or pedal power. UPS will evaluate the reliability, design, integration to the city’s infrastructure and acceptance of the vehicle. The intent is to operate the eBike in Pittsburgh as weather permits on a regular route year-round.

UPS has numerous cycle solutions deployed around the world. The company currently operates inner-city delivery projects with delivery on foot and by bike in Frankfurt, Offenbach, Hamburg, Munich, Oldenburg and Herne, Germany, as well as in Leuven and Mechelen, Belgium; Rome and Verona, Italy; Toulouse, France; and Dublin, Ireland.

Using its “Rolling Laboratory” approach, UPS deploys more than 8,500 low-emission vehicles to determine what works best in each situation. From old-fashioned pedal power and electric-assisted bicycles in dense urban areas like London and Hamburg to electric and hybrid electric vehicles in the U.S., and natural gas, renewable natural gas and propane globally, UPS puts sustainability innovation into action, all over the world.

About UPS

UPS (NYSE: UPS) is a global leader in logistics, offering a broad range of solutions including transporting packages and freight; facilitating international trade, and deploying advanced technology to more efficiently manage the world of business. UPS is committed to operating more sustainably – for customers, the environment and the communities we serve around the world.  Learn more about our efforts at ups.com/sustainability. Headquartered in Atlanta, UPS serves more than 220 countries and territories worldwide. The company can be found on the web at ups.com® and its corporate blog can be found at longitudes.ups.com. To get UPS news direct, visit pressroom.ups.com/RSS or follow @UPS_News on Twitter.

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