25 February 2010

Arizona shoots solar foot? And other company, supply chain, industry and government information

Top Stories

Coke, eBay, Google, Wal-Mart Buy Bloom Fuel Cells.reliability high.
"the new Bloom Energy Server . . . has been in use for at least 18 months at various test sites. Bloom’s first customers include: Bank of America, Coca-Cola, Cox Enterprises, eBay, FedEx, Google, Staples and Wal-Mart, according to a press release. . . . The product was launched amid much fanfare. California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Colin Powell and top execs from Google and Wal-Mart were at the launch, reports the Guardian UK." See Environmental Leader. Press release here. Story on launch event in The Guardian. [Bloom has been on top of the hype heap this week, so we just had to mention it.]

Companies, Industries, Markets and Supply Chains

BBC documentary leads Unilever to blacklist Indonesian palm oil company.reliability medium.
"Unilever has told Indonesian suppliers to stop sourcing palm oil from Duta Palma due to concerns over deforestation, reports Reuters. Unilever's warning comes shortly after a BBC documentary linked palm oil used in the company's products to rainforest destruction by Duta Palma." Unilever did not have supply contracts with Duta Palma, but as a direct result of the documentary it is ensuring that no oil from that company gets into its supply chain. More at Mongabay. [Duta Palma is a member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil, which comes under increasing pressure to do something about unsustainable practices. The incident again calls into question the ability of industry-formed sustainability-assurance schemes to deliver sustainable supplies.]

Tesco Powers Distribution Center With Food Waste.reliability high.
"Tesco’s new distribution center in Widnes, England, will be 100-percent powered  by renewable energy generated from food waste. Through a partnership with logistics company Stobart and food waste recycler PDM Group, the new 500,000-sq.-ft. distribution center will be supplied with renewable energy from PDM’s combined heat and power (CHP) plant. The UK retailer’s project will also reduce CO2 emissions by about 7,000 tons annually." Story in Environmental Leader.

While Congress Lags on Climate, Some Firms Take the Lead.reliability medium.
"We have a completely ineffectual Senate, a gun-shy EPA, too, and a dysfunctional global climate community. Our political leadership also seems to be paralyzed by fear to take on the climate crisis." But in the meantime businesses and business coalitions have been pushing forward. Six companies have joined with Climate Counts to form Climate Counts Industry Innovators, Amtrak, Ben & Jerry's, Clif Bar, REI, Shaklee, and Timberland. "Companies that are setting a high bar on corporate climate responsibility are increasingly faced with a critical issue: how to gain the consumer's attention for that leadership." See GreenBiz blog. More about the project here.

81% of European CEOs Focus on Sustainability.reliability high.
Consultants brands & values publish a commercial report analyzing company strategies. "They identify four key trends in their business models" "Of the 1200 CEO’s surveyed across every industry in 14 West European countries, 86% view ecological and social challenges as motivators of innovative products and business models.  Further, 90% believe that global threats are a challenge for the long-term success of their companies." More at Sustainable Life Media. PDF of sample from report here.

Government and Regulation

L.A. will reward recycling through new RecycleBank program.reliability medium.
"Called RecycleBank, the program gives points to individuals who recycle, worth as much as $400 per year per blue bin. . . . About 15,000 single-family homes in the West Valley and North Central sections of L.A. are eligible for the program, which will begin April 5 after participating residents’ bins have been equipped with identification tags that allow their waste to be weighed and assigns them points that can be redeemed at various retailers. CVS, Bed Bath & Beyond and Ruby Tuesday are among the national chains participating in the program. El Pollo Loco, Tritsch True Value Hardware and Jollibee are some of the local businesses that have also teamed with RecycleBank. Throughout the nation, more than 1,000 stores accept RecycleBank points. . . . The rewards are weight-based and will be evenly distributed among an entire waste-collection route, not by individual participation." See Los Angeles Times Greenspace blog.

HB2701 | Arizona.reliability high.
"In a surreal scene yesterday afternoon, the Republican-dominated House Government Committee voted 5-to-2 to approve a bill that major business interests in the state had just testified against, portraying HB 2701 as a major jobs-killer in a state that has been one of the hardest hit by the current recession. The bill adds 'nuclear' power to the list of renewable energy sources that count toward Arizona’s Renewable Energy Standards (RES)." The bill is part of a turf war between the legislature and the commission that manages energy regulations. See Phoenix Sun story. Another story at Environmental Leader about reaction.

[Crossposted from HaraBara.com courtesy of HaraBara, Inc. Copyright © 2010 HaraBara, Inc.]