CSR News Stories

Photo of oil pipeline

HSBC flags fossil fuel investment risks to investors

HSBC has warned of fossil fuel reserves becoming 'stranded assets' according to a private report reported by Newsweek. It says that fossil fuel companies may become 'economically unviable' as moves are taken away from carbon-based energy sources with the potential that this will mean some reserves of fossil fuels never have their financial value realised.

Photo of Google headquarters

EU regulators to test whether companies like Amazon and Google cross the line into abusing your privacy

Brussels has given notice that it will be scrutinising some of the large US tech groups to see if their practices are either anti-competitive or too intrusive on people's right to privacy. The draft plan for a 'digital single market', made public by the Financial Times, says that the EU will probe such areas as how search results are affected by paid advertising and whether companies like Netflix, Whatsapp and Skype are providing unfair competition to traditional media and telecoms companies.

Diet Pepsi

US: Pepsi drops aspartame from Diet Pepsi

PepsiCo has announced that it is to end the use of artificial sweetener aspartame in its diet drinks in the second half of this year. The move only affects US markets for now, and the company says it is responding to consumer preferences there.

photo of cash

UK: Burberry and GlaxoSmithKline sign up to living wage

High end fashion firm Burberry and pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline have been accredited as Living Wage employers, meaning that they have acted to ensure that employees and subcontractors are all paid a minimum of the Living Wage rate, currently set at £7.85 an hour.

Chipotle GM

US: Chipotle turns away from GM ingredients

Chipotle Mexican Grill has become the first major US restaurant chain to say that it will only serve food that is free from genetically modified organisms (GMOs). The first was previously the first of its peers to label all such foods in its product range - a move which was followed by a small number of others.

Toyota Prius

Toyota shares fuel cell patents

Toyota has said that it is to share over 5,000 patents that it holds relating to its fuel cell cars without royalties or other charges. The move is intended to help the spread of the more environmentally friendly technology in order to facilitate its take-up worldwide.

Oil palm

Dunkin Donuts and Krispy Kremes go for sustainable palm oil

US doughnut brands Dunkin' Brands and Krispy Kremes have responded to pressure on palm oil and deforestation with a commitment to sustainable sourcing.

Red Bull and Monster Energy Drinks

Lithuania: Energy drinks banned for sale to minors

The government in Lithuania has announced a ban on the sale of caffeine energy drinks to people under the age of 18. The move marks a first within the EU, and Lithuania predicted that others would now follow suit.

photo of cash

UK: Christian Aid attacks 'responsible' firms over tax haven subsidiaries

Christian Aid, the UK charity with a track record of attacking the CSR movement amongst businesses, has released a report accusing many of the key companies "that claim to be driving corporate responsibility" of secrecy because of subsidiaries in tax havens.

Rio Tinto mine

South Africa: Anglo American criticised over silicosis payments

Anglo American was criticised at its AGM for what was described as procrastination over the payment of compensation to former gold miners who are dying of the effects of silicosis.

Yahoo CEO

Women CEOs 'more likely to be fired'

New research suggests that female chief executives are more likely to be fired than their male peers. The study, which reviewed the 2,500 largest corporations showed that 10 percent more women CEOs were fired than male - a difference between four in ten women and three in ten men.

Sustainability reports

EU: Mandatory reporting law passed by European Parliament

Major businesses in Europe will be required to produce social and environmental reports as part of their standard annual report following the passing of a law in the European Parliament.

McDonald's Restaurant

Sustainable beef coalition frames draft principles

The Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (GRSB) has produced draft principles which are open for comment until mid May. The group brings together companies such as Walmart and McDonalds along with NGOs such as WWF and the Rainforest Alliance.


Bangladesh: Primark pays additional £6m to Rana Plaza victims

British retailer Primark has said that it will pay an additional sum of compensation to the victims or their families of the Rana Plaza factory collapse which affected one of their suppliers New Wave Bottoms. It had already paid over £1m.

Red Pepper, Uganda

Uganda: Orange withdraws advertising from anti-gay newspaper

Global telecom company Orange has withdrawn its advertising from the Ugandan tabloid newspaper that has pursued a vigorous anti-gay campaign over recent months.

Photo of air pollution sunset

US: Apple faces down climate change deniers

Apple chief executive Tim Cook rejected arguments at the company's AGM that it should avoid "unprofitable" action to reduce its impact on climate change. He said that the company didn't only consider return on investment when it took action on social issues such as the environment, and access for people with disabilities. Tim Cook told the AGM that Apple's intent was to "leave the world better than we found it."


Russia: IKEA hit by sustainable forestry accreditation withdrawal

Ikea Industry, a subsidiary of furniture retailer IKEA, has had its Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) accreditation removed after an audit found substantial failings.

Oil palm

Kellogg to restrict palm oil supplies to suppliers that leave rainforests

Kellogg, the manufacturer of breakfast cereals, has announced that it is to buy palm oil only from firms that can prove they don't damage the rainforest.

Love your clothes

UK: Clothing companies pledge to reduce lifetime impact of clothes

Major retailers and fashion firms, such as Marks & Spencer, John Lewis, Tesco, Next and Stella McCartney, have signed up to a commitment to make significant reductions in the environmental impacts of clothing.

Stubbed out cigarettes

US: CVS ends sale of tobacco products

Drug store giant CVS has announced that it will no longer sell tobacco at its pharmacies by October this year. Cigarettes currently represent 3% of the company's overall sales, but the company said it had concluded that selling tobacco was incompatible with the company's purpose of promoting wellness.

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