CSR News Stories

Waitrose Shell advert by Greenpeace
Greenpeace / Waitrose

UK: Waitrose puts hold on Shell partnership after social media storm

Retailer Waitrose has said it is putting its plans to expand its partnership with Shell on hold, following attacks against the company by environmental campaigners. The company, which goes to great lengths to ensure good practices in its supply chain for food, was planning on opening more shops at Shell petrol stations.

Chinese police at Ningbo protests
weibo.com

China: Protests against polluting plants on the rise

Demonstrations against the proposed expansion of a petrochemical plant in Ningbo have concluded with the city backing down on the plans. The move is the latest chapter in a growing trend of response against pollution caused by Chinese factories.

Photo of air pollution sunset

UK: Companies call for targets on low carbon power

A number of major businesses have called on the government to adopt a 2030 target for reduced carbon from the power sector. The current Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne has been hostile to such targets to date, attacking green policies as a burden on business.

Cluster bombs

Defence firms poor on anti-corruption measures

According to a new report by Transparency International, more than half of 129 defence companies scored zero points on its scale for anti-corruption measures. Fluor Corporation was the company that scored the best.

Business ethics

Glencore attacked by UN and others for seeing business opportunity in a crisis

Commodities trading company Glencore has been the target of widespread criticism after it was accused of celebrating its ability to use the current global food crisis as a good business opportunity. Chris Mahoney, the company’s director of agriculture trading had said: “The environment is a good one. High prices, lots of volatility, a lot of dislocation, tightness ... We will be able to provide the world with solutions ... and that should also be good for Glencore.”

McDonald's Restaurant

Chile: Fast food companies sued over marketing to children

McDonald's, Burger King and other fast foot restaurants are being sued for being in breach of a new law against the inclusion of toys with children's meals. The action is being taken just three months after the law came into force by its principal author and advocate Sen. Guido Gerardi.

Andrew Witty, CEO of GlaxoSmithKline

US: GlaxoSmithKline boss promises company has changed after $3bn mis-selling fine

Andrew Witty, CEO of global pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline, has expressed his regret over the unacceptable practices of the past which led to the company receiving a record $3bn fine in the US for selling drugs for unapproved uses amongst other breaches.

Fukushima explosion

Japan: Tepco supplier exposed workers in Fukushima crisis

Nine workers for construction firm Build-Up were forced to under-report radiation exposure when they were dealing with the Fukushima nuclear plant crisis. A senior executive at the company order staff to attach lead plates to pocket dosimeters supplied by Tepco in order to keep the readings below government emergency safety limits.

Effects of cheap alcohol

UK: Alcohol advertising under pressure from MPs

The Parliamentary health select committee has said that drinks companies run the risk of "paying only lip service" to the public health needs of reducing the impact of alcohol abuse. It flagged the possibility that new curbs on advertising could be in the pipeline, along with a ban on alcohol-related sports sponsorship.

France Telecom

France Telecom investigation over staff suicides linked to bullying

France Telecom is under investigation after 35 employee suicides in 2008 and 2009 have been linked to a restructuring programme that allegedly undermined employees' well being and was akin to bullying.

Photo of child in cocoa plantation

Nestle sets out actions on child labour

Nestle has launched an action plan to address child labour in the Cote d'Ivoire in response to an independent review on its supply chain there. The review was carried out by the Fair Labor Association, and made a number of recommendations all of which the company says it has accepted.

Bob Diamond - CEO of Barclays

UK: Barclays boss gives up bonus after bank fined for "widespread misconduct"

Chief executive Bob Diamond will give up his bonus for the year after Barclays was fined for attempts to rig the key interbank interest rates after a period of what the Financial Services Authority (FSA) called "serious and widespread misconduct."

Photo outside a WalMex store

Walmart targeted over labour practices at CJ Seafood

Over 140,000 people have signed a petition calling on Walmart to end its relationship with supplier CJ Seafood for alleged abusive working conditions.

Heartland poster

US: Diageo pulls funding from climate change denier institute

Drinks giant Diageo has said it will avoid funding the Heartland Institute following a campaign that compared people who believe in the reality of climate change with mass murderers.

Photo outside a WalMex store

US: Walmart shares dip over Mexican bribery cover-up

Walmart has been hit by a bribery scandal involving its Mexican business. Executives paid bribes of around $24 million to gain permits for new stores and, most damagingly, executives at the group's headquarters allegedly covered up evidence of the activity according to the New York Times.

Photo of oil platform in Nigeria

Brazil: Chevron head threatened with 30 years jail over spill

Criminal charges are being brought against 17 employees of Chevron and Transocean for an oil spill in Rio de Janeiro. Prosecutors said that George Buck, the head of Chevron's operations in Brazil, should go to prison for 31 years for his part in creating a major incident of pollution.

Stubbed out cigarettes

Canada: Tobacco class suit seeks billions for smokers

A class action lawsuit that argues that three of the major tobacco firms manipulated nicotine levels and hid evidence on the health effects of smoking is coming to trial after 15 years. The suit, which seeks up to C$27bn in damages, is the first of its kind in Canada.

Bill Gates

US: Bill Gates urges SEC to ignore corporate lobbying on corruption

Microsoft founder Bill Gates has written to the US Securities and Exchange Commission urging it to disregard attempts by energy companies to water down anti-corruption legislation.

Pesticides use

France: Monsanto found guilty of chemical poisoning

Monsanto has been found guilty by a court in Lyon of poisoning farmer Paul Francois who suffered neurological problesm after using the company's Lasso weedkiller. The suit charged that Monsanto had failed to provide sufficient warnings on the product label.

PT Nikomas factory in Indonesia - Nike supplier

Indonesia: Nike supplier to pay $1m unpaid overtime to workers

PT Nikomas has reached a settlement to pay workers $1m in unpaid overtime to around 4,500 workers. The company, which makes shoes for Nike at its factory in Banten province, had failed to pay for nearly 600,000 hours of overtime in two years.

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