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Art for Earth

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 2:27pm

Wednesday, April 22 is the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day and a unique moment in time to share and appreciate our connection to nature. During the week of April 20, WWF is inviting people to create art pieces that show their passion for nature. We’re asking that people share their art with the digital world on Instagram and Facebook using the hashtag #ArtForEarth. Throughout the week, WWF will share some of our favorite pieces on our social media accounts to our millions of followers. 

Each day of the week will have a new artistic theme to guide artwork: 

  • Monday, April 20: Wildlife

  • Tuesday, April 21: Freshwater 

  • Wednesday (Earth Day), April 22: One Planet 

  • Thursday, April 23: Food

  • Friday, April 24: Forests

  • Saturday, April 25: Climate 

  • Sunday, April 26: Oceans  

The campaign’s mission is to foster a virtual community of creative expression and help unify, inspire, and connect individuals to one another and to the planet during an immensely challenging time throughout our world. Follow WWF on Instagram (@world_wildlife) and Facebook (@Worldwildlifefund) for details, and also check out our website.

About World Wildlife Fund (WWF)
WWF is one of the world’s leading conservation organizations, working in nearly 100 countries for over half a century to help people and nature thrive. With the support of more than 5 million members worldwide, WWF is dedicated to delivering science-based solutions to preserve the diversity and abundance of life on Earth, halt the degradation of the environment and combat the climate crisis. Visit www.worldwildlife.org to learn more and keep up with the latest conservation news by following @WWFNews on Twitter and signing up for our newsletter and news alerts here.

Virtual Volunteering is Here in a Big Way – Here’s How to Take Advantage

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 2:27pm

 

Virtual Volunteering is Here in a Big Way – Here’s How to Take Advantage

As entire workforces are confined to their homes, and uncertainty swirls around us, we are presented with an opportunity to explore an otherwise under-utilized element in the corporate citizenship world: virtual volunteering – but not just any virtual volunteering. Meaningful, impact-driven, virtual volunteering that upskills employee volunteer leaders while achieving strategic outcomes for the company and the community.   

Your employees need to be made aware of accessible, vetted opportunities to support their communities, and how you are going to support them in doing so. One of the biggest challenges you will confront is finding viable opportunities in the confusion of what’s available, let alone aligning those opportunities with your existing CSR mission. 

Realized Worth is responding to the sudden need of our partners to adapt corporate volunteering to a virtual environment due to the COVID-19 crisis. We have designed a 4-week consulting package where our team will partner with yours to create a holistic approach to virtual volunteering that aligns with your existing CSR strategy.  

Read the full blog at this link.

ON Semiconductor Awarded the 2020 Business Ethics Leadership Alliance Community Champion Award by Ethisphere

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 2:27pm

 

ON Semiconductor news

ON Semiconductor (Nasdaq: ON), driving energy efficient innovations, today announced it has been awarded the 2020 Business Ethics Leadership Alliance (BELA) Community Champion Award by Ethisphere for its contributions to the member community. The two other companies also recognized in this category were Allianz Life Insurance and Infosys.

The BELA community is comprised of 300+ organizations from over 60 industries worldwide. The Community Champion recognition is designated for companies who share a unique level of awareness and vision to advance corporate community engagement, growth and transformation.

“The BELA community has always been one which, at the core, is about improving integrity through shared experiences because members are willing to set aside time and resources to advocate for each other in a way that enhances the overall business ecosystem. As the events of today clearly demonstrate, there is no other time in history when unity and cohesion are more necessary,” said Kevin McCormack, executive director at BELA. “Whether in times of crisis or business as usual, ON Semiconductor demonstrates the spirit upon which BELA is founded and we are proud to recognize them as one of the BELA Community Champions for 2020, as it is well-earned.”

“We’re honored to receive this recognition by Ethisphere for our contributions to the BELA member community”, said Jean Chong, vice president of ethics and corporate social responsibility at ON Semiconductor. “As a global organization, we recognize the inherent value of promoting ethical leadership and a world-class compliance culture. We’re proud to collaborate with other organizations with similar values to ours and exchange insights and best practices to continue operating with compliance and ethics at the forefront.”

Founded by Ethisphere, BELA is a globally recognized organization of leading companies collaborating together to share best practices in governance, risk management, compliance and ethics.

Earlier this year, ON Semiconductor was named one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies® by Ethisphere for the fifth time. In 2019, ON Semiconductor was recognized as a Fortune 500 company, one of Barron’s 100 Most Sustainable Companies and on Newsweek’s America’s Most Responsible Companies 2020 list.

About ON Semiconductor

ON Semiconductor (Nasdaq: ON) is driving energy efficient innovations, empowering customers to reduce global energy use. The company is a leading supplier of semiconductor-based solutions, offering a comprehensive portfolio of energy efficient power management, analog, sensors, logic, timing, connectivity, discrete, SoC and custom devices. The company’s products help engineers solve their unique design challenges in automotive, communications, computing, consumer, industrial, medical, aerospace and defense applications. ON Semiconductor operates a responsive, reliable, world-class supply chain and quality program, a robust compliance and ethics program, and a network of manufacturing facilities, sales offices and design centers in key markets throughout North America, Europe and the Asia Pacific regions. For more information, visit https://www.onsemi.com.

# # #

ON Semiconductor and the ON Semiconductor logo are registered trademarks of Semiconductor Components Industries, LLC. All other brand and product names appearing in this document are registered trademarks or trademarks of their respective holders. Although the company references its Web site in this news release, such information on the Web site is not to be incorporated herein.

From Diagnostics to Masks: How a Cisco Global Problem Solver Challenge Winner Is Helping Front-line Health Workers

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 2:27pm

 

Cisco Blogs | Corporate Social Responsibility

OmniVis developed a handheld, IoT device that detects cholera in water samples within 30 minutes of collection. Until now, that process took over a week. Shorter detection times can reduce illness and death from the disease. The biotechnology company was a second runner-up in the 2017 Cisco Global Problem Solver Challenge. The challenge recognizes entrepreneurs who are using technology to address a social or environmental problem.

Now, the team behind OmniVis is using Solidworks to design the OmniMask, which is a tool that they typically use for designing their diagnostics device technology. OmniMask is a 3D-printed mask that was developed to protect front line health workers who don’t have access to enough personal protective equipment (PPE). OmniMask is unique because it is compatible with faces of various shapes and sizes. Using easily accessible materials, OmniMask was designed to be open-source for facilities with 3D printers.

The design and prototype process behind OmniMask
Jordan Florian, Global Health Engineer at OmniVis, and Michelle Florian, Finance and Grants Manager, teamed up to spearhead OmniMask. The married couple’s journey started on a Sunday morning at their home in Indianapolis, Indiana. After spending an entire week working from home, Michelle and Jordan felt there was more they could do to help health workers who were caring for patients with COVID-19.

“We have a lot of family and friends in healthcare and saw things on social media from people who didn’t have PPE. There were designs online for 3D- printed masks, but we could tell they were less than ideal,” said Jordan. The designs he found were very rigid around a user’s face, and there were a lot of gaps. Anyone with a face shape that deviated from the “norm” wouldn’t be able to wear the typical 3D mask.

Michelle and Jordan came up with an idea for a mask that would print completely flat and would form to the user’s face. According to Jordan, the first version was “pretty bad.” After trying it on, they started drawing on the mask, cutting it, and folding it back out. They analyzed the issues on a computer, so they knew what to change, which made the iteration process extremely fast compared to what they usually do with diagnostics.

Making sure OmniMask is accessible and fits everyone
Katherine Clayton, Co-Founder & CEO of OmniVis, suggested trying the mask on different faces. Michelle and Jordan took turns trying on masks and made a few more tweaks. The mask can be customized by applying heat, like from a hairdryer, while wearing the mask. This customized fit ensures there are no gaps or leaks, which is essential when designing a mask with a high-grade filter. Katherine also helped Jordan and Michelle scale down the mask for kids who may suffer from health issues that put them at higher risk of disease – adopting a user-centered design approach, so anyone can use the product.

After that, it was about finalizing the materials. They decided to use PLA filament, which is a pretty standard 3D printer material. “Instead of making customized material, we wanted to make it accessible. We respect those special design materials, but we need to make sure that things are easily sourced,” Michelle shared. Another unique aspect of their design is the filter, which needed to be up-to-par with the standard N95 filters. To make OmniMask accessible, they used hospital-grade furnace filters that they were able to source online. The filter blocks particulates of 0.3 microns or larger, the same as the N95. The filter is a little circle about 1.75 inches in diameter. Right now, they are sending about 10 to 20 filters with each mask. They recommend only 8 hours of use per each filter. You can wipe down the OmniMask after each use and put in a new filter.

Pivoting Operations from the Cholera Testing Kit to OmniMasks
When it came to pivoting their operations from the cholera testing kit to OmniMask, Katherine shared that it has been a balance. OmniVis will always focus on diagnostics because they believe in the importance of prevention and its ability to change the course of disease outbreaks. “Michelle and Jordan fit the cultural values that OmniVis has, making medical devices for good and helping to prevent the spread of disease,” Katherine said.

From a business perspective, as a for-profit company, OmniVis needs to be sustainable. But Katherine expressed that they believe charging for OmniMask is not right during a time of need. OmniMask is an open-source product, so someone else in another part of the world can make it. “Our overall vision is to prevent disease. The way we usually do that is by giving people a way to detect disease. In this case, what came to us is how the transmission of such a contagious virus can be stopped with the right type of mask. OmniMask is something we can do for the world, on our own time,” said Jordan.

With generous funding from Peace First, they are distributing OmniMask to health care workers and individuals who are at higher risk of infection on a local scale first, with 20 distributed so far and 25 orders pending. “We are hoping to find partners who can donate funds that we can use specifically to make and distribute the OmniMask. Our hope and intention are to reach as many people as we can with the partners that we gain,” Michelle shared. Katherine added that they are looking for partners to help them scientifically test the OmniMask and see how well it does at protecting individuals. The team is also hoping to find a partner to help them figure out the best way to make the filters, since not everyone has access to a laser cutter and the filters need to be cut into small circles.

Working together to design and deliver PPE
Katherine advised others who are interested in designing PPE to approach it from the perspective of working together, instead of the usual competitive mindset. Jordan has some additional advice: “It’s not about profiting from this. Unfortunately, we have seen that, and that is one of the big reasons we aren’t charging for OmniMask. You need to approach it with a global health-compassionate mindset, or you won’t have the right intentions when you make your product.”

If you are interested in learning more about OmniVis and their response to COVID-19, please visit their COVID-19 Response Center. OmniVis plans to make the OmniMask file available to the public, so anyone with a 3D printer can make one from home. OmniVis is looking to partner with third party testing facilities to determine mask efficacy and to find manufacturing partners for scale-up. If you are interested in a partnership or donating funds to help with the testing, manufacturing, or distribution of OmniMask, please contact the team directly.

Raising Captain Planets

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 2:27pm

Some of you may recall the 1990s American TV cartoon program, “Captain Planet and the Planeteers” where five “planeteers” across the globe use the power vested in their rings to foil villainy and summon Earth’s ultimate superhero — Captain Planet himself.

What I really like about the program is that it instills environmental awareness among the young. Children learn that pollution, deforestation, poaching, and other environmentally destructive and unethical activities are just “bad behaviors.” They understand that they should stand up to such activities and be Earth’s superheroes.

MELTING ICE, VOLATILE GROUNDS

The Earth’s average temperature has increased each year since 1880 (NASA/GISS). While these increases of less than a degree Celsius may not seem like big increases, data has proven that small changes in temperature are leading to extreme changes in the environment.

No matter where you live on the global map, you may have felt the effects of global warming.

  • Rising temperatures: The rise in Earth’s surface temperature is due to accelerating levels of heat-trapping gases (also known as greenhouse gases) like carbon dioxide. Over the last decade, human activities such as fossil fuel burning, deforestation, and agricultural open burning are increasing the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Warming of the planet creates a domino effect that disrupts the natural ecosystem and threatens the very existence of species that cannot evolve as fast as the rate of change.

  • Rising seas: As temperatures rise, polar ice sheets are losing mass. Melting glaciers and polar ice caps lead to rising sea levels as more water flows into the ocean. Rising sea levels equates to a higher chance of significant flooding in low-lying coastal areas. Warmer waters are contributing to dying coral beds; a phenomenon known as coral bleaching.

  • Extreme weathers: As the Earth warms, extreme weather conditions are becoming the new normal. Hotter heat waves, historic storms, and intense flooding are happening today. These events will prevail as global warming prevails at its current rate.

Despite the environmental policies and regulations in most developed countries to mitigate global warming effects, the rate at which the climate system is warming demands an urgent global awakening.

POLLUTION: A DENSE PROBLEM 

The promise of a “better life” in cities drive the migration of people from rural areas where they end up living in less than ideal conditions. Not only are people exposed to more air and noise pollution in cities, but they also face all sorts of other urban-related stress such as flash floods, improper waste management, and contaminated drinking water.

According to the 2018 State of Global Air Report, 95 percent of the world’s population live in areas where air particulate matter concentrations exceed the World Health Organization’s air quality guidelines. Africa, the Middle East, and South Asia hold critical levels of contaminated air collectively because of fossil fuel combustion, open burning of agricultural lands and forests, and industrial and transportation-related sources.

By 2050, more than 5 billion people will face severe water shortages due to global climate change and polluted water supplies. (United Nations 2018). Water pollution takes on many forms: toxic algae blooms, oil spills, lead-contaminated drinking water, and debris-lodged waterways. Plastic waste is one of the worst offenders. The amount of plastic that empties into the ocean every year is a staggering 18 billion pounds.

Plastics disintegrate to tiny particles in the ocean, which includes particles as small as 10 nanometers. Sea creatures mistake these microplastics for food and ingest them. Eventually, the fish, lobster, or squid end up on our dinner plates, and so do the microplastics in them. It will take a long time before we can fully conclude the effects of accumulated microplastics in our bodies — plastic endures for 450 years or more. Already, the plastic pollution crisis has garnered worldwide attention as more plastic-snared or plastic-filled wildlife are found dead.

AWARENESS + STEM EDUCATION = SUPERHEROES

We are living in critical times. Mother Earth is suffering, and we need to stop global warming and pollution from exacerbating. Read on to learn about the two-step recipe to create Earth’s ultimate superheroes.

Step 1: Educate the masses

Teach at a young age environmental awareness and eco-friendly habits. Share with children ways to conserve water and electricity, and to not consume more than what they need. Show them how to get creative with repurposing old items instead of just trashing them into the bin. For some inspiration, here’s how a man creates cyborgs out of trash and some handy tips on reusing broken furniture parts to create incredible masterpieces in your home.

Make sorting out and recycling paper, glass, plastic, and aluminum cans a habit that carries on into adulthood. Involve your children in eco-friendly do it yourself (DIY) projects at home: grow a vegetable patch, create organic laundry detergent, or ferment a yummy kefir beverage. If you are thinking of purchasing new shoes, a handbag, or a toy for your child — support companies who create products out of 100% recyclable materials. I am proud that in Malaysia there are several zero waste stores to delight Earth’s advocates on this side of the globe; like The Hive – Honey We Don’t Waste.

Keysight supports and participates in numerous environmental projects around the world. In fact, Keysight’s largest manufacturing site in Penang, Malaysia, modeled a strawless site by eliminating single-use plastic straws; saving the planet an estimated 8,000 straws a month.

Step 2: Empower future problem solvers with STEM

Awareness is an excellent start to any epiphany. However, at current global warming rate and pollution levels, awareness alone is not enough. We need to raise the next generation of engineers and scientists who are curious about environmental issues, and bold enough to step forward and tackle them head-on.

The challenge of perception

Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education plays an increasingly critical role in schools and universities. According to Pew Research Center, mathematics and science scores of United States students consistently lag that of peers in many other advanced industrial countries. Why so? According to a related survey, half of the respondents think students do not pursue STEM degrees because they think science, engineering, and mathematics subjects are too difficult. Twenty-three percent think STEM subjects are not useful for their careers while 12 percent perceive the subjects are boring.

An overhaul is necessary

The Electrical and Computer Engineering Department Heads Association (ECEDHA) are aware of student retention challenges in ECE degree programs. Three universities are doing something about it by redefining the incumbent structure and to reinvigorate the teaching and learning experience in ECE programs.

Still, the most effective way to instill science and engineering interests in the future generation is to expose them to problem-solving STEM projects when they are young. When STEM is used to solve real problems, children see the positive impact of their learning and can understand that their role serves a much “higher” purpose.

Whether it is to eliminate microplastics or to reverse the effects of global warming, these little “Captain Planets” are confident future scientists and engineers who will not shy away from creating an environmental solution that has yet to exist today. Inspiring stories like how an 11-year-old stepped up to solve the Flint Michigan, USA water crisis in 2014. Environmental awareness, together with STEM knowledge, can potentially bring breakthrough solutions to our planet.

Keysight Technologies’ dedication to sparking STEM interest in children early in their education through various school and community engagements such as the Keysight After School (KAS) Program and Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day (IGED).

The IoT Innovation Challenge was also one of the ways that Keysight has encouraged “think tank” type approaches to environmental sustainability technology by graduate and undergraduate students worldwide. Students submitted designs for wireless sensor networks, for example, that could help address some of the environmental problems related to urban living. 

IT TAKES A VILLAGE

Everyone has a part to play to combat global warming, pollution, and all other damaging activities. The Paris Agreement calls on worldwide societies to do their part in limiting global temperature rise below 2 degrees Celsius. Education is key and one of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

There is hope.

I look forward to breakthrough innovation from engineers, scientists, and the “Captain Planets” of tomorrow to make this planet a better place to live in. For more information about how Keysight is doing to empower researchers, educators, and students worldwide, visit www.keysight.com/find/education

Scotiabank Earmarks $2.5 Million for COVID-19 Community Response Efforts

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 2:27pm

 

Scotiabank Impact

A small group of University of Ottawa faculty and students are making a big impact in the fight against COVID-19 by using their engineering know-how and 3D printers to produce much-needed face shields for frontline healthcare workers in the city.

Using the Richard L’Abbé Makerspace lab — where students in design courses can use the equipment and the space to test and prototype their designs — they are now making as many as 300 face shields a day as it becomes increasingly difficult globally to source protective personal equipment.

"Supporting frontline workers is extremely important, and we're happy that we can,” said Hanan Anis, engineering professor at the University of Ottawa who started the project. 

The group is receiving a $25,000 donation from Scotiabank – one portion of the $2.5 million the Bank has earmarked for  community response efforts across its global footprint with the aim of supporting those populations and communities most at risk during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Scotiabank’s $2.5-million commitment includes:

  • $1.2 million to empower our regional teams to support local charities that are working very hard to address the most urgent community needs;

  • $400,000 to the United Way's COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund;

  • $150,000 to select academic partners working on rapidly scalable COVID-19 healthcare innovations; and

  • A $750,000 fund to support the emerging needs of local charities as the pandemic continues to evolve.

The University of Ottawa and its Centre for Entrepreneurship and Engineering Design (CEED) is among the Bank’s select academic partners to receive support for their initiative.

Sandra Odendahl, Scotiabank’s Vice-President of Global Sustainability and Social Impact, said the donation came together after someone on her team spotted a news item about university engineering labs getting innovative with 3D printers to help produce protective equipment.

Odendahl reached out informally to professors at the University of Ottawa, where she is an alumnus of the engineering school, and other schools to see if they were working on a similar project.

That’s when they learned about Anis and the face shield initiative, she says.

“It ended up changing our way of thinking how we allocate donations too,” said Odendahl. “We made sure to carve out a tranche for grassroots innovation projects by really clever people at colleges and universities that are trying to do scalable initiatives right now.”

Jacques Beauvais, the University of Ottawa’s Dean of Engineering, says he’s proud of its engineering and maker communities who are working together during this time of great demand.

“It’s important to have homegrown solutions, and Scotiabank’s generous donation will allow us to help deliver exactly that for Canada’s frontline healthcare workers,” he said.

For the group of faculty and students at the University of Ottawa, the $25,000 goes a long way, said Anis.

"It makes a huge impact,” she said. “We need a lot of material, and the funding means that we can get more 3D printers if needed."

Anis founded and runs the CEED which allows students and community members to access the Richard L’Abbé Makerspace. The idea for the masks came when she saw the growing number of COVID-19 cases and deaths of healthcare workers mount in Italy, she says.

It prompted her to think about how she and the local community could help. At the time, there were discussions in the maker community about how to use 3D printers to create items to assist the healthcare sector in the battle against the novel coronavirus.  Anis added,

“It started off by really waking up one day and seeing the horrible images coming out of Italy… At the time, we didn't have many cases – it was a case or two in Ottawa. I kind of saw the writing on the wall.”

Anis sent around an email looking for ideas and people who wanted to help, and she formed a group of a few people.

“The face shield was the first need,” she said. “Before anything, we need to protect healthcare workers.”

After successfully producing two, Anis took to social media to call for hospitals who wanted to receive them. Montfort hospital in Ottawa reached out to the university and worked with Anis and her team to develop and test a prototype over the course of 10 days.

They have since ramped up from two face shields to making as many as 300 a day, Anis said.

As of Tuesday, Anis and her team were able to give more than 850 shields to local hospitals such as Montfort, The Ottawa Hospital, Bruyère as well as some smaller hospices. Among the recipients were nurses tasked with assessing patients for COVID-19 who did not have any personal protective equipment until last Wednesday, said Anis.

In total, they have produced roughly 1,000 face-shields using 3D printers to make the band and using computer-controlled cutting machines to cut the clear sheets of plastic required for the shield, Anis said. On average, each shield costs about $10 to produce.

Others have pitched in too, from volunteers to deliver the shields to each hospital to individuals and companies with 3D printers who produce headbands on their own and drop them off at the lab daily.

"We have been lucky that the community in Ottawa has been helping us a lot... I hope that what comes out of this is that we are in it together."

Meanwhile, Anis is working with local companies to take their prototype and create them at a larger, faster scale, she said.

She has received requests for thousands of shields from local hospitals, a tall order for the Makerspace lab alone, she said.

"If successful, then they can crank out a shield every two minutes… We are doing this until we can find processes to do this properly."

30 Winners of $1.2 Million in Edison Scholars Program Announced by Edison International

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 2:27pm

 

Edison International news

Thirty high school seniors in Southern California Edison’s service area have been named 2020 Edison Scholars and will be awarded $1.2 million in scholarships by Edison International to pursue science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) studies.

“We are very proud of these students and their outstanding academic achievements,” said Pedro Pizarro, president and CEO of Edison International. “The scholarships provide financial support to these deserving scholars and their families so they can focus on their studies. We are counting on them to help us innovate and turn big ideas into real-world solutions and we know they have a bright future ahead.”

Each Edison Scholar will receive a $40,000 scholarship — paid over four years — to further their academic pursuit of STEM fields at a four-year accredited U.S. college or university.

See all the Edison Scholars here

Half of the scholarship recipients this year will be first-generation college students. Since 2006, more than $11 million in scholarships have been awarded to 670 high school seniors through the Edison Scholars Program.

Edison International, the parent company of Southern California Edison, is one of the largest corporate philanthropic contributors in Southern California and its support of charitable causes, such as the Edison Scholars Program, is funded entirely by Edison International shareholders. SCE customers’ utility bill payments do not fund company donations.

To learn more about the 2020 Edison Scholars, visit edison.com/2020EdisonScholars.

About Edison International

Edison International (NYSE:EIX), through its subsidiaries, is a generator and distributor of electric power, as well as a provider of energy services and technologies, including renewable energy. Headquartered in Rosemead, Calif., Edison International is the parent company of Southern California Edison, one of the nation’s largest electric utilities.

Media relations contact: Sally Jeun, (626) 302-2255

Walking the Walk of Good Governance With Outsourced Trading

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 2:27pm

 

by Gary Paulin, Global Head of Integrated Trading Solutions, Northern Trust Capital Markets

There’s no escaping ESG in investing today, whether you’re the asset owner, the asset manager, or an intermediary. Governance (the G) may be the most pervasive of the three in the day-to-day business of investing, particularly when it comes to transparency. Regulators have made it mandatory to some degree, and asset owners press asset managers for ever greater amounts of it beyond that demanded by law. Intriguingly, the most profound effects of governance could be those on outsourced trading.

Outsourcing in general is a trend among asset managers, driven in part by an increased emphasis on governance and transparency, that in turn contributes to fee compression. Index investing is usually cited as the key contributor to the lower fees asset managers now charge, but requirements for transparency around fees have played a part as well. It’s a bit of a circle – less revenue in fees means a search for greater cost efficiencies, which leads to outsourcing. But here’s the twist – increased benefits in terms of fulfilling governance requirements are evolving to become an equally compelling reason for managers to outsource their trading function.

“If the savers demand that our money is put into companies with good governance, then the guardians of those savings must be able to display really good governance,” says Gary Paulin, Global Head of Integrated Trading Solutions, Northern Trust. “And unless you have your own trading functionality, you need to outsource to an appropriate third party – a counterparty without conflicts and with outsourcing in its DNA, along with deep liquidity that clients can interact with to meet trade execution requirements and maintain a global presence.”

Increasing importance of governance

Transparency, accountability, and fairness are the cornerstones of good governance, and if there is a lasting legacy of the global financial crisis it’s that those watchwords continue to ring out loud and clear.

“Regulators all around the world are trying to improve those aspects within their industries,” says Paulin. “As I’ve traveled the world and spoken with regulators, I’ve concluded that regulators tend to listen to each other, and they always seem to be looking at which regulations produced good customer outcomes in one jurisdiction and how they might apply in their own. I’m not suggesting that MiFID or the Senior Managers Regime from the UK will wholly be incorporated into the U.S. regulations, but that doesn’t stop those regulations from entering those industries via competition. The aspects of MiFID that govern research are now widely viewed as a best practice in the U.S. Why? It provides cost transparency but also lowers research costs at a time when there is huge cost pressure and everyone is questioning value for money.”

The Senior Managers Regime in the UK is particularly relevant to why governance help is now seen as a key aspect of outsourced trading – and why outsourced trading is growing. In a nutshell, the regulation makes senior managers accountable for the activities of their firm, and the people performing those activities. More than cost pressure, more than the need and expense to keep up with technology, accountability is the biggest driver of change in terms of asset manager operating models.

“If you’re a senior manager, and there is a steward’s inquiry, you have to show you have taken all reasonable steps to prevent misconduct or whatever is at issue,” says Paulin. “You can’t just say you did X, Y, and Z – you have to prove it. Almost invariably, the senior manager for the trade activity doesn’t come from a trading background. It’s more likely they have an operations background. In my conversations with some of these folks, they have shared similar concerns: operation resiliency, conflation of roles, and overnight orders.”

Paulin says he’s hearing “more and more about overnight orders, and it comes right down to governance and control. For a lot of funds – and this could be if you’re a U.S. fund trading in Japan or a European fund trading in Hong Kong – a senior manager who is responsible for all reasonable steps to prevent any misconduct might naturally feel uneasy about the fact they might have $100 million of risk going on in Japan but their trader has gone home to bed. Do they have sufficient control over their order flow? Do they have a line of sight? For many managers it’s a significant burden to have their own traders in Japan controlling order flow.”

It is solutions to such global challenges that inspired Northern Trust’s Integrated Trading Solutions (ITS) in the first place, and which motivate its constant pursuit of solving new problems as they arise for asset managers and owners alike. In addressing the accountability issues around trading, Paulin says the degree of enhanced governance can be a game changer, especially in conjunction with other aspects of ITS’ front- to back-office integration, significant liquidity capture and scale, and reporting functions, embedded compliance and oversight, transaction cost analysis, and rigorous business continuity planning.

For example, Paulin says, consider the footnote requirement for transaction reporting. Northern Trust can assist its clients through its third-party provider of transaction reporting software. In other words, the process can be automated to a large degree, and free up resources and streamlines processes as a result.

“It’s a good thing for everyone that a lot of firms and individuals within them are thinking about how they can enhance governance,” says Paulin. “We can help as an outsourcing partner with boots on the ground, with sole interest in our clients’ goals, and knowing that our interests are aligned with theirs. The outsourced trading story has fully evolved from one that was about cutting costs to one that can improve controls and oversight across functions. And it’s not just about regulation or clients – ESG is the fastest growing category of funds in the world, and any time you demonstrate that you walk the walk in that regard, it’s a plus.”

FedEx Activates Project Airbridge Operation

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 2:27pm

FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) and the world’s largest express transportation company, has announced the delivery of its first shipments as a part of Project Airbridge, a public-private partnership managed by the federal government.

FedEx has contracted with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to provide expedited shipping of personal protective equipment (PPE) and other supplies critical to COVID-19 relief efforts. FedEx Express aircraft are being used to transport critical PPE supplies from manufacturers around the world to the United States. The operation aims to accelerate delivery of PPE and other medical supplies, moving them via air instead of ocean.

Once the shipments have arrived in the United States, they will become part of the U.S. Strategic National Stockpile. The FEMA Movement Control Team will then manage distribution to healthcare facilities and workers throughout the country.

This week, in coordination with DuPont, two initial shipments were transported from Vietnam to Texas carrying more than 450,000 Tyvek® protective suits. In the weeks to follow, 500,000+ suits will be shipped each week.

FedEx will also operate several flights this week carrying PPE for Medline Industries Inc. from China to Illinois. Medline anticipates bringing 7 million facemasks, additional PPE and anesthesia supplies to the United States.

From pick-up and break-down, to document preparation, export/import clearance, cross-docking and storage, the FedEx Logistics team used its vast expertise to support the movement of critical PPE.

“As a company, we are committed to providing our essential services as we help combat this pandemic,” said Raj Subramaniam, Chief Operating Officer of FedEx Corporation. “Our participation in the federal government’s Project Airbridge to transport critical PPE and medical supplies into the United States is the latest example of FedEx team members around the world coming together to keep critical supply chains moving.”

Our support of Project Airbridge is made possible by team members across our FedEx Express and FedEx Logistics operating companies.

Since January, FedEx has worked with governments, non-profits, suppliers and retail customers to proactively help with relief efforts, including:

  • Collaborated with HHS, the TN Air National Guard and other agencies to move 4 million COVID-19 test swabs to cities across the U.S.

  • Continued collaboration with humanitarian aid organizations, such as Direct Relief to ship more than 4 million masks and more than one million pieces of personal protective equipment to impacted areas around the world and shipments of masks, gloves and disinfectant wipes to 1,000 community health centers and free clinics in all 50 U.S. states as part of the FedEx Cares “Delivering for Good” initiative.

  • Collaborated with International Medical Corps to transport and deploy 41 medical shelters to Los Angeles, New York and Puerto Rico that will support frontline providers in patient flow and treatment.

  • Shipment of biomed products, including blood units, with American Red Cross.

  • Overnight SenseAware® monitored shipments of more than 150,000 test samples from remote test sites around the U.S. to diagnostic labs

  • Expedited delivery of test kits from Indianapolis-based Roche Diagnostics to U.S. labs.

  • Providing vital access points to the FedEx global network through FedEx Office retail locations as they serve as hold locations for redirected shipments and urgent printing support for government agencies and customers.

Keeping Team Members Safe

The safety of 475,000 FedEx team members is the company’s top priority. In addition to following guidance from public health organizations, we are:

  • Suspending signature requirements for most deliveries to help couriers and customers maintain a safe social distance.

  • Promoting social distancing on the job, including measures at security screening, on employee shuttles, and in common areas.

  • Educating team members about prevention, including hygiene and cleaning, via manager meetings, signage and digital monitors in facilities.

  • Providing sanitizer and disinfectants for drivers and vehicles; disinfecting facilities and vehicles more frequently; supplying gloves and other personal protection equipment; implementing daily temperature-taking of employees at some locations.

  • Disinfecting cockpits, jumpseat areas, and aircraft lavatories to keep pilots healthy.

“Our customers rely on us now more than ever before and FedEx team members are stepping up to help sustain the global economy. We are immensely proud of all our team members and their unwavering commitment to deliver for our customers and communities throughout this global crisis,” Subramaniam said.

For more information about FedEx relief efforts, visit https://www.fedex.com/en-us/coronavirus.html.

About FedEx Express

FedEx Express is the world’s largest express transportation company, providing fast and reliable delivery to more than 220 countries and territories.  FedEx Express uses a global air and ground network to speed delivery of time-sensitive shipments, by a definite time and date with a money-back guarantee.

About FedEx Logistics

FedEx Logistics plays a key role within the FedEx portfolio, connecting 95 percent of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP) with its comprehensive suite of specialty logistics solutions. The company provides air and ocean freight forwarding, supply chain solutions, cross border e-commerce technology services, customs brokerage, and trade management tools and data from a single trusted source. For more information, visit fedex.com/logistics.

About FedEx Corp.

FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) provides customers and businesses worldwide with a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services. With annual revenue of $70 billion, the company offers integrated business solutions through operating companies competing collectively and managed collaboratively, under the respected FedEx brand. Consistently ranked among the world’s most admired and trusted employers, FedEx inspires its more than 475,000 team members to remain focused on safety, the highest ethical and professional standards and the needs of their customers and communities. To learn more about how FedEx connects people and possibilities around the world, please visit about.fedex.com.

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HPE Aruba Supplies Network Infrastructure to Floating Hospital to Aid COVID-19 Patients in Italy

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 11:27am

Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company (NYSE: HPE), has supplied and installed network infrastructure on board the GNV Splendid, a large passenger ferry owned by the MSC Group, which has been transformed into a floating hospital to battle the global COVID-19 pandemic.

The GNV Splendid, moored in Genoa, Italy, has been converted to provide additional hospital space and medical treatment for COVID-19 patients in Italy. Thanks to the combined efforts of HPE, Grandi Navi Veloci (GNV), MSC Cruises, and other partners, a network consisting of 70 access points and over 4 kilometers of cable has been successfully installed, providing Wi-Fi coverage for healthcare workers and patients across the various decks of the ship.

HPE Aruba supplied network infrastructure providing Wi-Fi coverage and internet access to workers and patients

In addition to supporting medical efforts, including data transfer to and from Genoa hospital, the network infrastructure will also improve the day-to-day experience for patients onboard, allowing them full internet connectivity during their stay. The network also allows ambulance crews to provide real-time updates on the status of patients as they arrive, allowing them to anticipate the needs of individuals before they board.

Crucial to the rapid implementation of the project was the contribution of Aruba partners Esprinet, Mantero Sistemi, MavianMax and EI Towers. Their solutions enable guaranteed online access, making it possible to connect to the internal network of the San Martino Hospital in Genoa for up-to-the-minute information sharing, as well as ready access to patient medical records for healthcare professionals on the ship.

HPE Aruba rapidly designed and deployed an effective network to support onboard medical personnel

The extensive experience of the Aruba team in the field of naval wireless infrastructure allowed them to rapidly design and deploy an effective network to support onboard medical personnel and patients. Responding to the urgent and unprecedented situation, the Aruba team worked with experienced electricians onboard the GNV Splendid to overcome the various obstacles inherent to this kind of implementation, including the need to ensure functionality for various types of devices, and delivering connectivity within a large metal structure across multiple decks and watertight compartments.

“We thank the Hewlett Packard Enterprise team and Mantero Sistemi for offering up their cutting-edge technological solutions, know-how and expertise, collaborating in the implementation of the project that we initiated together with RINA, ASL, Civil Protection and other partners. Through their quick response and ability to innovate in the face of this unprecedented event we were able to guarantee connectivity for medical workers and patients onboard,” said Barbara Poli, GNV Chief Information and Technology Officer.

The hospital ship has been converted to support 25 patients initially with cabins converted into single rooms for use as isolation chambers. The ship has also been equipped with oxygenators and will be used for delivering treatment to coronavirus patients who need low-intensity care and for recovery. If needed, the ship can potentially increase its capacity to house approximately 400 patients.

In such a critical moment for our country and the world, we felt a duty to make a contribution to those who are on the front lines every day to halt the spread of the virus and save lives. We did not hesitate to join in this vital initiative of GNV and MSC Cruises,” commented Stefano Venturi, Vice President and Managing Director at Hewlett Packard Enterprise Italy. "We will continue to support the global effort to fight coronavirus however we can."

“Being able to apply our skills and technology to deliver such an important project is a source of great pride. Our experience has allowed us to be focused and fast in implementation, anticipating challenges before they arise. Our technological choice for the vessel was the new Wi-Fi 6 technology and Aruba 515 Access Points, supporting the 802.11ax standard, allowing for the best performance among a large number of connected devices including doctors’ laptops and tablets, medical devices, mobile phones that allow patients to be connected with their families and, devices allowing crew to monitor the onboard operations. We also connected an off board screening area, allowing applications and data sharing between on-board and off-board operations," said Fabio Tognon, Country Manager for Italy at Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company.

To help support the healthcare industry in the fight against the global pandemic, Aruba is donating $50 million USD in secure network connectivity kits for the immediate provisioning of pop-up clinics, testing sites and temporary hospital facilities in the US, Canada and select countries in Europe and Asia-Pacific. For more information, please visit https://www.arubanetworks.com/assets/promo/Healthcare-Connectivity-Bundle.pdf

About Hewlett Packard Enterprise

Hewlett Packard Enterprise is the global edge-to-cloud platform-as-a-service company that helps organizations accelerate outcomes by unlocking value from all of their data, everywhere. Built on decades of reimagining the future and innovating to advance the way people live and work, HPE delivers unique, open and intelligent technology solutions, with a consistent experience across all clouds and edges, to help customers develop new business models, engage in new ways, and increase operational performance.

For more information, visit www.hpe.com.

Cox Keeps Communities Connected to Healthcare Information During COVID-19 Crisis

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 11:27am

As part of its ongoing coronavirus relief efforts, Cox Communications has launched a program to help the communities it serves make sense of the significant amount of information available around the coronavirus pandemic and get streamlined access to emerging technologies, like telemedicine and health care apps, which support quick access to care.

In addition to regular updates from the World Health Organization (WHO) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Cox is providing health systems with a platform to share critical COVID-19-related information with their local communities, including the recommended steps we can each take every day to help reduce the impact of coronavirus.  Where possible, Cox is also facilitating linkage to the health systems' telehealth services or mobile apps.

The information can be located quickly by speaking "Coronavirus" into the Cox Contour voice remote or accessing by searching the Contour guide.

"Cox connects people to what they care about most.  For many, right now they are looking for information and guidance related to their health," said Sujata Gosalia, executive vice president and chief strategy officer. "Local health care systems are on the front lines of combatting the crisis and we want to help these systems connect people to vital health and safety information as quickly and easily as possible."

Lafayette General Health was the first to take advantage of this free service and is already providing important information to Louisiana citizens.

Lafayette General Health President David L. Callecod, FACHE says, "We are continuously learning new information about COVID-19 and Cox is offering a much-needed resource by providing credible, up-to-date health information to the public in real-time and all in one place. We are thankful to team up with a strong, local partner like Cox in this joint effort."

Banner Health is also providing valuable health care content to subscribers through the Contour guide. Scott Nordlund, chief strategy and growth officer for Banner Health said, "As one of the largest health care organizations in the country, Banner Health is grateful to have partners like Cox Communications now using their platform to help us provide an additional channel for important information about COVID-19. This service will bring valuable and reliable content to the public so that people can make educated decisions about their health, and the health of their loved ones."

Health information is just one of many ways Cox is supporting its communities during this crisis.  In the last week, Cox donated a total of 20,000 surplus technician shoe covers to medical centers in Arizona and Las Vegas and continues to look for ways to mobilize its supply chain to support healthcare workers.

Trapollo, a Cox Business company that provides connected healthcare solutions, is offering its "health at home" solutions to healthcare systems around the country to meet surging patient requirements and free up hospital beds.

Cox is also joining with other Internet & Television Association (NCTA) members to provide $100 million in public service advertising through June to help educate consumers on the pandemic and prevent the spread of the virus.

Previously announced Cox support for pandemic relief include increasing customer internet speeds and lowering prices on entry tiers, temporarily waiving data usage overage fees and providing free broadband for sixty days for low-income students who aren't already connected via Cox's Connect2Compete program.

For more information on Cox's coronavirus relief efforts, visit cox.com.

About Cox Communications
Cox Communications is committed to creating meaningful moments of human connection through broadband applications and services. The largest private telecom company in America, we proudly serve six million homes and businesses across 18 states. We're dedicated to empowering others to build a better future and celebrate diverse products, people, suppliers, communities and the characteristics that makes each one unique. Cox Communications is the largest division of Cox Enterprises, a family-owned business founded in1898 by Governor James M. Cox.

Green Mountain Energy Customers Avoid 9.3 Billion Pounds of Carbon Dioxide in 2019

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 11:27am

With Earth day approaching, Green Mountain Energy announced today the impact that its customers are making on the environment. In 2019 alone, Green Mountain Energy customers prevented more than 9.3 billion pounds of carbon dioxide (CO2) by choosing cleaner electricity and carbon offset products. For perspective, this is equivalent to removing nearly one million cars from roadways or turning lights off in 11.9 million households for a year.

Earth day celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, and the annual recognition of our planet has come a long way since its beginning in 1970. The celebration of Earth Day has spread globally with almost every country in the world now hosting environmentally-focused events. In light of social distancing guidelines to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, Green Mountain encourages people to share their conservation and sustainability practices on social media by tagging the company and using the hashtag #EarthDay2020.

“We are honored to unveil Green Mountain Energy’s annual impact results on behalf of our community of clean energy supporters,” said Mark Parsons, vice president and general manager of Green Mountain Energy. “Even though we’re apart this Earth Day, Green Mountain invites everyone to celebrate the place we call ‘home’ on social media. No matter how you support clean energy, our annual impact results prove that individual actions, regardless of how small, can add up to have a real impact on our planet.”

Green Mountain customers have also extended their commitment to the environment through voluntary donations to the Green Mountain Energy Sun Club, a nonprofit organization empowering local communities with sustainability solutions. Green Mountain founded Sun Club in 2002 and since then, the program supports projects promoting renewable energy, energy efficiency, resource conservation and environmental stewardship through nonprofit partnerships and sustainability grants. In its latest Annual Impact Report, Sun Club reported $1.9 million in grants for 2019 alone, and a total investment of $8.9 million in 122 projects from nonprofits in Texas and the Northeast over the past 18 years.

Implementing conservation and sustainability practices has become one of the primary goals of society today, and one that requires a new mindset for action. Choosing cleaner energy and carbon offset products helps the environment by avoiding CO2 emissions associated with electricity produced with fossil fuels and supporting projects that reduce CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions. According to a recent Nielsen report consumers are increasingly choosing products based on their sustainability features, and Green Mountain will continue to partner with residential and commercial customers to implement energy solutions that protect the planet.

About Green Mountain Energy Company
Green Mountain Energy Company is the nation’s longest serving renewable energy retailer and believes in using wind, sun and water for good. The company was founded in 1997 with a simple mission: to change the way power is made. Green Mountain offers consumers and businesses the choice of cleaner electricity products from renewable sources, as well as a variety of carbon offset products and sustainable solutions for businesses. Green Mountain customers have collectively helped avoid more than 81 billion pounds of carbon dioxide emissions. To learn more about Green Mountain, visit greenmountainenergy.com.

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International Paper Helping to Deliver Nutrition in Louisiana

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 11:27am

International Paper (NYSE: IP) is taking action to address critical needs in the communities in which its employee live and work during the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic. One of the world’s leading producers of renewable, fiber-based packaging, pulp and paper has donated 21,500 corrugated boxes to Louisiana food banks, which are providing food to the increasing number of people experiencing job loss or furlough during the pandemic lockdown.

The Bogalusa, La., Containerboard Mill supported its community in Southeast Louisiana with 1,500 donated boxes to the Northshore Food Bank. The food bank regularly provides food assistance to more than 375 individuals and families each week. Over the last four weeks, those numbers have increased dramatically.

“Twenty percent of the food distributions we’re providing now are to new households,” said Jamie Andrepont, development director for Northshore Food Bank. “We have 51% more seniors and 20% more children in need. The local school systems have had challenges in feeding their students, so we have provided additional food to school-aged children during our food distribution.”

International Paper also donated 10,000 boxes to Second Harvest Food Bank of Greater New Orleans and Acadiana, and 10,000 to Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank, part of the company’s existing commitment to the Feeding America® network.

“Our communities are relying on boxes now more than ever,” said Kalisa Hyman, communications manager, Bogalusa Containerboard Mill, International Paper. “Corrugated boxes are essential to restock grocery shelves, bring medical supplies to hospitals, and to provide food to people in need through the hard work of the food banks in Louisiana. I’m proud that we’re able to mobilize our products to address these critical community needs.”

About International Paper

International Paper (NYSE: IP) is a leading global producer of renewable fiber-based packaging, pulp and paper products with manufacturing operations in North America, Latin America, Europe, North Africa and Russia. We produce corrugated packaging products that protect and promote goods and enable worldwide commerce; pulp for diapers, tissue, and other personal hygiene products that promote health and wellness; and papers that facilitate education and communication. We are headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., employ more than 50,000 colleagues and serve more than 25,000 customers in 150 countries. Net sales for 2019 were $22 billion. For more information about International Paper, our products and global citizenship efforts, please visit internationalpaper.com.

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U.S. Gain Supplies RNG for Thermal Emission Reductions

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 8:27am

U.S. Gain is pleased to announce that it has completed a renewable natural gas (RNG) supply agreement with the Port of Seattle. RNG will be used to heat Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) and power its fleet of buses. 

“We’re proud to assist the Port of Seattle in meeting its 2030 carbon reduction goals well ahead of schedule,” said U.S. Gain Director of RNG Business Development Bryan Nudelbacher. “RNG is widely used by fleets across market sectors to reduce transportation-related emissions. More recently though, we’re seeing organizations take interest in RNG for other uses – such as reducing thermal energy-related emissions. We’re excited to see the Port of Seattle diversify application of RNG at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.” 

RNG is produced from methane captured during the decomposition of organic materials at agricultural farms, landfills and wastewater treatment plants, then cleaned and conditioned to meet pipeline standards and injected into existing natural gas distribution pipelines. RNG presents several benefits to organizations seeking emission reductions throughout their operations. It can be used as an alternative fuel to reduce scope 1 and/or 3 emissions, but also as a thermal energy solution to reduce heating and cooling-related scope 2 emissions. 

“The transition to renewable natural gas is another example of the Port’s environmental leadership, even in hard times,” said Port of Seattle Commission Vice President Fred Felleman and founding co-chair of the Energy and Sustainability Committee. “While it’s critical that immediate attention be given to recovery from the COVID-19 crisis, we must continue to reduce our carbon footprint if we are to avoid the long-term economic and human costs associated with the climate crisis.” Through its initiatives, the Port of Seattle is working to become the most energy-efficient port in North America. This partnership is another step forward in achieving that goal. 

“RNG is the best solution for organizations seeking immediate emission reductions,” Nudelbacher explained. “Because RNG is a drop-in solution for those consuming fossil natural gas today, it’s an easy transition that will produce significant environmental results. RNG can be procured through contracts with suppliers like U.S. Gain and comes without the need for infrastructure upgrades, features uninterrupted supply unlike other renewables and availability is increasing daily as new development projects come online.”

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About U.S. Gain

U.S. Gain is a leader in development, procurement and distribution of renewable and compressed natural gas for the transportation and energy segments. Over the course of 10 years U.S. Gain has diversified throughout the renewable natural gas supply chain; investing and managing renewable natural gas development projects at dairies, landfills and wastewater treatment plants; generating, trading and monetizing clean fuel credits; designing, building and operating natural gas fueling stations both private and a public GAIN Clean Fuel® network. This vertical integration allows companies access to the cleanest fuel and energy at the best value.  

As a part of U.S. Venture, Inc., a family-owned, Wisconsin-based company, U.S. Gain is committed to finding a better way for companies to succeed – both economically and environmentally. With experience you need and ethics you value, U.S. Gain is the partner you’ll be proud to work with. Learn more at https://www.usgain.com/.

GlobalGiving Launches Trust-Based Microgrants for COVID-19

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 8:27am

GlobalGiving announced this week it has raised nearly $20 million from companies, foundations, and individuals to grant to vetted organizations leading the COVID-19 response around the world. Additionally, GlobalGiving shared it has distributed $1,000 hardship microgrants to 100 organizations across 38 countries whose day-to-day work is impacted. With the help of an anonymous donor, GlobalGiving will distribute at least 100 more microgrants to its nonprofit community in the coming weeks to support organizations responding to new challenges posed by COVID-19. 

“GlobalGiving cannot singlehandedly make up for the economic loss hitting the nonprofit sector, but we are committed to doing whatever we can,” said CEO Alix Guerrier. “This pandemic will require bold individual and collective actions to defeat, and this is one of our first steps to respond to our community’s needs.”

In recognition of this hardship, GlobalGiving has made $1,000 microgrants to 100 nonprofit partners that say they need support, and has at least 100 more microgrants underway. “We recognize that most of our nonprofit partners aren’t directly involved in frontline efforts to stop the coronavirus, but they’re absolutely still affected by it. That struggle isn’t making headlines or mentioned in press conferences, but their work has never been harder, and it must go on. Suddenly, they must find a way to fundraise without a gala, educate without a classroom, and rally their staff without four walls to unite them,” said Guerrier. 

Hundreds more organizations in the GlobalGiving nonprofit community have requested hardship assistance, so donors and funders are invited to pledge their support. To inquire about making a strategic gift, please email partnerships@globalgiving.org.

GlobalGiving’s supporters have contributed more than $2 million for COVID-19 emergency response through the GlobalGiving Coronavirus Relief Fund (www.globalgiving.org/covid) and an additional $18 million in contributions and grants has come from generous corporate programs including Blackstone Charitable Foundation, Ford Motor Company Fund, JPMorgan Chase, VF Foundation, and 3M. This funding is supporting vetted organizations providing medical support, supplies, and other emergency response in Bangladesh, Burundi, China, France, Germany, Indonesia, Iran, Italy, Kenya, Morocco, South Africa,  South Korea, United Kingdom, United States, Yemen, and elsewhere.

About GlobalGiving 

GlobalGiving makes it safe and easy for people and companies to give to local projects anywhere in the world, providing nonprofits with the tools, training, and support they need to become more effective. Since 2002, GlobalGiving has helped raise more than $450 million from more than one million donors for more than 25,000 projects. GlobalGiving vets and supports organizations in 170 countries, so when disasters like the COVID-19 occur, GlobalGiving can quickly deliver funds to community-driven organizations that are best-suited to provide relief in their own communities. GlobalGiving is a top-rated (4-star) charity on Charity Navigator. We are also accredited by the BBB Wise Giving Alliance.

For more information, please contact: Marlena Hartz, Director of Communications + Marketing, mhartz@globalgiving.org 

For more from this organization: www.GlobalGiving.org

OMV Supports Relief Flights

Mon, 04/20/2020 - 8:27am

The global spread of the corona virus has not only suddenly changed our social life, but also disrupted usual supply chains and supply routes. OMV's primary task is to supply the country with energy in a safe and responsible manner. As one of the largest listed industrial companies in Austria, OMV also bears social responsibility for society. For this reason, OMV is supporting relief flights of the Austrian Federal Government for public health facilities and aid organizations that have become necessary due to the coronavirus crisis with Jet A1 fuel worth up to EUR 500,000. The relief flights operated by Austrian Airlines will bring urgently needed medical materials such as protective suits, masks and disinfectants directly to Austria.

“Health and well-being are our top priority, both in our own company among our employees and in our social responsibility. This is why we support the relief flights of the Austrian government, which bring urgently needed materials into the country in such a difficult supply situation – to protect the entire population, especially people in medical professions”, says Rainer Seele, Chairman of the OMV Executive Board and CEO.  

Background information:

OMV Aktiengesellschaft
OMV produces and markets oil and gas, innovative energy and high-end petrochemical solutions – in a responsible way. With Group sales of EUR 23 bn and a workforce of around 20,000 employees in 2019, OMV Aktiengesellschaft is one of Austria’s largest listed industrial companies. In Upstream, OMV has a strong base in Central and Eastern Europe as well as a balanced international portfolio, with Middle East & Africa, the North Sea, Russia and Asia-Pacific as further core regions. Daily average production was 487,000 boe/d in 2019. In Downstream, OMV operates three refineries in Europe and owns a 15% share in ADNOC Refining and Trading JV, with a total annual processing capacity of 24.9 mn tons. Furthermore, OMV has a 36% participation in Borealis, one of the world’s leading producers of polyolefins. The Company operates about 2,100 filling stations in ten European countries. OMV runs gas storage facilities in Austria and Germany; its subsidiary Gas Connect Austria GmbH operates a gas pipeline network in Austria. In 2019, gas sales volumes amounted to around 137 TWh. Sustainability is an integral part of OMV’s corporate strategy. OMV supports the transition to a lower-carbon economy and has set measurable targets for reducing carbon intensity and introducing new energy and petrochemical solutions.

For further information, please contact:

OMV Public Relations:      Andreas Rinofner, Tel.: +43 1 40440 21357, e-mail: public.relations@omv.com 

OMV Investor Relations:   Florian Greger, Tel.: +43 1 40440 21600, e-mail: investor.relations@omv.com 

Web:                            
http://www.omv.com
http://blog.omv.com
http://omv-mediadatabase.com

Social:                          
http://twitter.com/omv
http://youtube.com/omv
http://linkedin.com/company/omv
http://www.facebook.com/omv
http://instagram.com/omv

Arbor Day Foundation and Publix Partner to Protect the Natural Waters of Florida

Fri, 04/17/2020 - 8:25pm

In early 2020, the Arbor Day Foundation and Publix partnered to plant 125,000 trees in Florida’s Withlacoochee State Forest and Little Orange Creek, helping to restore impaired waterways and critical wildlife habitats. These efforts are the continuation of a four-year partnership between Publix and the Arbor Day Foundation. Since 2016, Publix has generously supported the planting of more than 480,000 trees encompassing 710 acres of land in collaboration with the Foundation.

“Over the course of four years, Publix has demonstrated how a continued commitment to tree planting can benefit an entire region in the long-term, creating thriving environments for people and wildlife,” said Dan Lambe, president of the Arbor Day Foundation. “We are grateful for their continued partnership and its immense impact on Florida’s watersheds.”

Reforestation efforts will support watershed and ecosystem restoration in two key regions of Florida. Nutrient pollution in Little Orange Creek, one of the many impaired waterways in the Ocklawaha River watershed, has led to oxygen depletion and aquatic habitat smothering. Planting native longleaf pines will help mitigate pollution, as well as improve water filtration and protect the natural habitats of land and aquatic wildlife. Withlacoochee State Forest is facing the impacts of land misuse dating as far back as the 1800s. Tree planting efforts are underway to convert the area to its natural ecosystem. This project will support watershed health as well as restore ecosystems for wildlife including gopher tortoises, Sherman’s fox squirrels, red-cockaded woodpeckers, and bobwhite quails.

“When you start learning about watersheds and what they do, you discover how foundational they are to our quality of life because almost every area of land is a watershed, especially in Florida,” said Publix Director of Environmental and Sustainability Programs Michael Hewett. “Part of our mission at Publix is to be responsible citizens in our communities. By working with the Arbor Day Foundation to plant trees in key watersheds, we’re doing good together by restoring areas that work as natural filters for the water we all drink and use every day.”

Proceeds from sales of Publix-branded reusable bags are used to support sustainability projects throughout their operating area. For more information about Publix’s sustainability efforts, visit sustainability.publix.com.

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About the Arbor Day Foundation
Founded in 1972, the Arbor Day Foundation has grown to become the largest nonprofit membership organization dedicated to planting trees, with more than one million members, supporters, and valued partners. Their vision is to help others understand and use trees as a solution to many of the global issues we face today, including air quality, water quality, climate change, deforestation, poverty and hunger.

As one of the world's largest operating conservation foundations, the Arbor Day Foundation educates and engages stakeholders and communities across the globe to involve themselves in its mission of planting, nurturing and celebrating trees. More information is available at arborday.org.

About Publix
Publix, the largest employee-owned company in the U.S. with more than 200,000 associates, currently operates 1,242 stores in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia. Publix is privately owned with 2019 sales of $38.1 billion. For 23 consecutive years, the company has been recognized by Fortune as a great place to work. In addition, Publix’s dedication to superior quality and customer service is recognized among the top in the grocery business. For more information, visit the company’s website, corporate.publix.com

AEG Launches AEG #GoGreen Campaign to Support 50th Anniversary of Earth Day

Fri, 04/17/2020 - 8:25pm

Today, AEG, the world’s leading sports and live entertainment company, launched its AEG #GoGreen social media campaign in support of the 50th anniversary of Earth Day.  The campaign invites consumers to calculate their plastic footprint and take climate action by conserving more and using less. 

Consumers who visit www.aeggogreen.com, can view and share AEG’s “Imagine” video, calculate their plastic footprint, and share sustainability facts and GIFs using the hashtags #AEG1EARTH and #GoGreen. 

Additionally, on Earth Day, April 22, AEG will host a virtual workshop for its employees with Sara Tso of LA’s Matchbox Kitchen who will provide tips to employees for reducing their waste footprint in addition to resources for living waste free.

Whirlpool Corporation Raises the Bar for Environmental Commitment and Progress in 2019 Sustainability Report

Fri, 04/17/2020 - 8:25pm

 

Whirlpool Corporation Raises the Bar for Environmental Commitment and Progress in 2019 Sustainability Report

April 16, 2020 /3BL Media/ - Whirlpool has a long, proud history of environmental sustainability and a strong track record of action and success. In 2019, we raised the bar on our environmental commitments, and accelerated the progress of our short- and long-term goals that meet or exceed the Paris Accord,” said Marc Bitzer, Chairman, and CEO of Whirlpool Corporation.“ As we continue to navigate the impact of COVID-19, the health and safety of our employees and communities remain our priority. We strongly believe that our sustainability efforts are as important now as ever. These efforts are guided by a clear mission to earn trust and create demand while in constant pursuit of improving life at home. It’s a commitment that is brought to life by our 77,000 employees worldwide.”

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18th Annual Employee Engagement Summit

Fri, 04/17/2020 - 8:25pm

This two-day peer-to-peer event brings together corporate citizenship and employee engagement professionals to learn and network, share promising practices, discuss the latest trends, and create greater social impact together.

Through interactive sessions and breakouts, the summit provides a forum for learning and effective practice exchange to engage the most pressing challenges facing today’s CSR professionals.

This year’s themes include how to align your corporate brand with social and employee activism, integrating business goals with CSR, measuring and demonstrating impact, the latest trends in employee engagement, the new frontiers of diversity and inclusion, and more.

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