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Sustainable Business News
Jamais Cascio, 25 Nov 04

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development is an interesting group. While they are clearly focused on the need for businesses to make a profit, they strongly advocate policies, strategies, technologies and ideas for doing so in an environmentally and socially sustainable way. They're involved in projects WorldChangers can definitely get behind, from scenarios of sustainable mobility to conferences on energy and the developing world. I'm still poking around at their website, but I've already found more fascinating documents and presentations than I know what to do with.

One great resource for WorldChangers are their "e-newsletters," which reprint news reports relevant to sustainable business practices from all over the world. The newsletters (which are divided by subject -- Business and Sustainable Development, Energy & Climate, Sustainable Livelihoods, and Sustainable Mobility) come once weekly, and cover topics familiar to WorldChanging readers. Read on for some highlights from last week's selection:

  • "Green Practices Good for Business," from the South China Morning Post: "Governments, big business and the man on the street are giving increasing consideration to environmental issues, according to the Business Environmental Council (BEC), lead organiser of the Hong Kong Awards for Industry Environmental Performance category.

    It warns local manufacturers to take heed of this growing green conscience or risk losing business."

  • "Coming clean: Growing demand for absolute transparency is forcing companies to reveal details of non-financial issues,' from the National Post: "...in a possible sign of things to come, America's second-largest drug maker last Thursday also phoned Philippa Moore of SustainAbility, a tiny London-based consultancy that specializes in corporate social responsibility.

    'They've been attacked and they want help,' said Ms. Moore, based in Washington, D.C. 'They want to be more transparent.' "

  • "Software for a safer, cleaner world," from the Financial Times: "When the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme comes into force at the beginning of next year, many companies will start paying for the carbon dioxide they emit in Europe. It could fuel renewed interest in environmental and other non-financial reporting software - even now, some of the world's biggest companies are using no more than a spreadsheet to track how much CO they produce."

  • "Microfinance Business Beginning to Pick Up," from Africa News: "Other microfinance services are following that pattern in moving from local do-good NGO financing towards financial structures. Now microfinance is in the hands of local institutions becoming financial organisations. And increasingly it is being routed through national institutions that are capable of forming relationships with NGOs and the world."

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