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Corporate / Utilities


SEC Backs Shareowner Challenge of Dominion Nuclear Plant (05/06)
The utility's effort to exclude the resolution calling for analysis of the financial risks associated with a nuclear reactor which could cost over $19 billion is turned down by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Sustainable Investors Praise Obama's Clean Power Plan (08/06)
The Plan, which will reduce carbon emissions from the power sector by 32% below 2005 levels in 2030, is praised by Mindy Lubber of Ceres as a blueprint for the low carbon transition.

The Risk to Investors of Stranded Assets (01/09)
In a roundtable hosted by Environmental Finance, investors, analysts, and corporate managers convene to discuss the financial risks associated with stranded fossil fuel assets. First of a two-part series.

Vermont a Co-Filer of Resolution Requesting Emissions Reduction Targets from Exxon (01/08)
The state's Pension Investment Committee joins a coalition coordinated by the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility and Ceres in filing a shareowner resolution calling for greenhouse gas emissions reduction goals.

EPA Announces Regulations for Coal Ash Disposal (12/27)
But by declining to classify coal ash as hazardous waste, the Agency fails to adequately safeguard human health, the advocacy organization As You Sow states. Second of a two-part series.

Norway's Sovereign Wealth Fund Declines to Divest from Fossil Fuels (12/12)
Nongovernmental organizations criticize an expert report that recommends active ownership instead of divestment, which was published one week after Norway's largest private pension fund announced a policy of divestment.

Distributed Energy Resources Require a New Regulatory Framework (08/18)
The New England Clean Energy Council calls for modernization of the region's grid to encourage renewables and distributed energy resources.

Third National Climate Assessment Published (05/06)
In its new report, the US Global Change Research Program asserts that the effects of climate change have already become a present day concern, and announces the launch of a website to help Americans receive reliable scientific information.

Another Win for Climate Change Mitigation (03/28)
As You Sow withdraws shareowner resolution at Southern Company after the utility agrees to report on integrating renewable energy into its business operations.

European Energy Companies Failing to Adapt (03/05)
A report from Greenpeace cites analysts who find that to maintain even diminished profits, the largest European Union utilities will have to shut down most of the fossil fuel capacity added in the last ten years.

As Consumption Declines, Water Utilities Need New Pricing Models (08/31)
A report from Ceres and the University of North Carolina reveals that the current pricing models used by water utilities are inadequate at a time when they face considerable infrastructure costs.

Investors Want Better Disclosure from Municipal Water Utilities (04/02)
Basing their requests on a framework developed by Ceres, 12 investors write to the National Federation of Municipal Analysts, asking for improved disclosure to ensure that all material information is provided.

Get Real about Climate Change, Shareowners Tell Utilities (02/28)
With trillions of dollars in infrastructure upgrades looming for electric utilities, investors call on five companies to emphasize a transition to renewables, improve energy efficiency, and manage water risks.

Shareowners Call for Sustainability Reporting by Emerson Electric (02/12)
For the fourth year in a row, a resolution filed by Walden Asset Management wins increased support from shareowners who want the company to improve its reporting on its ESG performance.

US Solar Installations Set Records Despite Insufficient Government Action (09/17)
The Solar Energy Industries Association reports that solar installations in the US totaled 742 megawatts in the second quarter of 2012, but Ernst & Young warns that policy gridlock prevents lawmakers from making the necessary long-term investment decisions.

Investors Urge Congressional Leaders to Support EPA Authority (06/28)
A coalition led by Calvert urges leaders in both houses of Congress to oppose resolution that would prevent the Environmental Protection Agency from implementing Mercury and Air Toxics Standards for power plants.

Court Supports EPA Authority to Regulate Greenhouse Gases (06/27)
An appeals court rules that the Environmental Protection Agency is authorized under the Clean Air Act to regulate emissions from new fossil fuel-fired power plants.

EPA Proposes Carbon Pollution Standard for New Power Plants (03/29)
The standard, which will be the first to limit emissions from the largest individual sources of carbon pollution in the US, will not be applied to existing plants or those to be built in the next 12 months.

Benefits of Large-Scale Low-Carbon Transition Will Take a While (03/06)
The authors of a new study find that even a rapid transition to clean energy will not produce climate benefits until the second half of this century, while converting coal to natural gas will have little positive effect.

Resolutions or Engagement? Ceres Prepares for Proxy Season by Using Proxy Ballot to Encourage Change (02/21)
SocialFunds.com talks with Rob Berridge of Ceres about the organization's past success and its plans for driving change in the stewardship of the environment through shareowner resolutions.

Shareowners Continue Campaign for Disclosure of Risks Associated with Fracking (02/10)
Ten shareowner resolutions addressing hydraulic fracturing have been filed thus far for the 2012 proxy season, and proponents for improved disclosure look to improve upon last year's 40% vote in support.

Congressional Recipients of Oil Industry Money Overwhelmingly Support Controversial Pipeline (01/17)
An analysis by MapLight reveals that of the 118 House members who report the oil and gas industry among their top ten contributors, only two voted against legislation calling for construction of the Keystone XL pipeline.

EPA Launches Database of High Emitters (01/13)
2010 greenhouse gas emissions data reveals that power plants were the largest stationary sources of direct emissions, with 96 of them among the 100 facilities reporting the highest levels of emissions.

Appeals Court Blocks Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (01/02)
Power producers argued that the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) January 1 deadline gave them too little time to install required pollution control equipment.

EPA Issues Rule on Mercury Emissions from Power Plants (12/26)
The rule requiring power plants to install pollution control equipment to reduce emissions will improve the nation's health and create almost 1.5 million jobs in the next five years.

Shortfall in Water Infrastructure Investment Could Reach $84 Billion by 2020 (12/21)
The American Society of Civil Engineers warns of environmental and public health consequences of a failing water infrastructure, and maintains that private investment is crucial to reversing current investment trends.

Cap-and-Trade Program for Water Quality Advances (08/29)
The Electric Power Research Institute receives a $1 million grant from the US Department of Agriculture for its Ohio River Basin Water Quality Trading Project, which seeks to improve watersheds at lower cost.

Resolutions Addressing Hydraulic Fracturing Continue to Attract Shareowner Support (06/03)
At annual meeting of Ultra Petroleum, the company refuses to permit shareowners to present their proposal, but votes in favor double that of 2010.

EPA Finalizes Emissions Reporting Rules for Petroleum and Natural Gas Industry (11/15)
Large facilities in the industry will be required to monitor and report all greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to the EPA.

Jolly Green Giant: Google Gives the Green Light to Alternative Energy (12/04)
Google promises millions of dollars to create inexpensive renewable energy.

Taking the Pulse of the Electric and Natural Gas Utilities Sector (11/26)
KLD's newest report provides investors with insight on how US and European utilities are dealing with environmental and societal concerns.

Jitters About Regulatory Outlook Rile Confidence in Coal Mining Stocks (08/12)
Growing political momentum for enacting state and national laws to reduce CO2 emissions is raising worries among investors of the long term viability of the coal industry.

Water, Water, But Not Everywhere (04/12)
The entry of private equity firms and consolidation of utility operations by large conglomerates are poised to change the water industry over the next 20 years.

S&P 500 Lags on Climate Disclosure, Electric Utilities Burning Economic Value Into Carbon (02/05)
Two recent reports use findings of the 2006 Carbon Disclosure Project to assess limits of transparency on climate risks and opportunities and drag on value creation at electric utilities.

Costs of Carbon and Coal: Examining Emissions Trading Scheme Impact on Shareowner Value (12/22)
WWF and SAM Group collaborate on a study modeling impacts of rising costs of carbon dioxide emissions on the valuation of German utility RWE, the biggest private carbon emitter in Europe.

Rainforest Action Network Seeks to Stem Flow of Financing to TXU Coal Project (12/20)
Part two of this two-part articles addresses how RAN sent a letter to 54 banks urging them to withhold funding from a TXU plan to build 11 pulverized coal-burning power plants in Texas.

TXU Shareowners File Three Resolutions Questioning Wisdom of Pulverized Coal Plants (12/19)
Part one of this two-part article examines how shareowners are raising environmental and regulatory concerns over the TXU coal expansion plan, as well as environmentally preferable alternatives to coal such as energy efficiency.


Top Five Socially Responsible Investing News Stories of 2005 (01/05)
Socially responsible investing, corporate social responsibility, and microfinance embraced by the mainstream; shareowner advocates withdraw several climate change resolutions as companies agree to report; and exchange traded funds apply SRI strategies.

Rising Oil Prices Fuel Investment Returns in Renewable Energy for New Alternatives Fund (10/14)
The first environmental mutual fund is also globalizing its reach to capitalize on innovative developments in alternative energies in other countries.

World Bank and IMF: Indicators of Investor Opportunity or Red Flags of Investor Risk? (08/23)
Two academic papers produce empirical evidence that World Bank and International Monetary Fund loan conditions stipulating market reform may prove counterproductive and fuel backlash.

Climate Change Offers Opportunities: An Interview with Tim Wirth, President of the UN Foundation (04/19)
At the Ceres conference in Boston last week, SocialFunds.com sat down with Tim Wirth to discuss the opportunities for companies presented by the climate change issue.

European Utilities Top Oekom Sustainability Rankings, US Utilities Crowd the Bottom (10/28)
Corporate sustainability rating firm Oekom Research rewards climate change mitigation and enhancing energy accessibility for the economically disadvantaged in its latest report.

Corporate Governance Ratings Take Different Approaches to Produce Similar Results (08/19)
GovernanceMetrics International rates corporate governance in relation to other companies, while Institutional Shareholder Services rates in relation to market indexes.

Climate Change Litigation Could Affect Companies’ Market Value (07/23)
In the near future companies could face the risk of being on the receiving end of climate change lawsuits, a development that stands to impact shareowner value.

Report Connects the Dots Between Corporate Governance and Climate Change Risk (07/10)
A report reveals the degree to which 20 major global companies use corporate governance to address climate change risks and opportunities.

Huh?!?: CEO Pay Goes Up in 2002 While the Stock Market Goes Down (06/25)
The Corporate Library's report shows how CEO pay increased in 2002 despite the fact that the stock market declined significantly, a trend that does not sit well with investors.

CalPERS Says Xerox's Corporate Governance Not Worthy of Copying (03/27)
Pension fund giant names six companies that need to improve their corporate governance.

Global Warming Shareowner Resolution Filed at "Filthy Five" Electric Companies (01/17)
A coalition of institutional investors has filed a shareowner resolution calling on five electric power producers to report on the business risk of their greenhouse gas emissions.

Utilities: They're Not Just for Widows and Orphans Anymore (10/04)
Utilities may represent a wise investment in this bear market, especially for socially responsible investors seeking to capitalize on companies that have the best environmental records.

Business Ethics' 100 Best Corporate Citizens Outperform S&P 500 (04/29)
An academic study concluded that Business Ethics' list of 100 Best Corporate Citizens generated better returns than the remaining companies on the S&P 500.

Corporate Sustainability Reporting Is Here to Stay (04/05)
The Global Reporting Initiative, an organization working to make corporate performance more transparent, was formally inaugurated as an independent institution yesterday.

Consulting Firm Promotes Online Reporting of Triple Bottom Line (12/31)
SustainAbility, a British research and consultancy firm, recently released a report on how companies, their stakeholders and customers use the Internet to communicate about sustainable development.

SBI Promotes Responsible Business Practices Alongside Profits (12/27)
The Sustainable Business Institute is working to spread its vision of sustainability to business leaders and the public.

Global Energy Providers Score Well in Corporate Responsibility Ratings (12/06)
New study by German research firm Oekom identifies several trends developing worldwide in the power delivery sector.

GEMI Elevates Environmental Consciousness from the Bottom to the Top Line (12/03)
The Global Environmental Management Initiative releases a new report promoting environment-friendly methods of enhancing corporate performance.

Greenhouse Gas Protocol Initiative Creates Global Emissions Standards (11/07)
An international consortium of government agencies, NGOs, and businesses creates its own set of standards for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in advance of the Kyoto Protocol.

EPA Program Recognizes Better Corporate Environmental Performance (11/02)
Performance Track motivates and rewards businesses that exceed EPA's environmental standards.

Companies Get Help Building Green (10/29)
The U.S. Green Building Council makes it easier for companies to be more energy efficient and friendlier to the environment by helping them construct "green" buildings.

Scandinavian Companies Work toward Sustainable Business Model (10/03)
A group of large Nordic companies are participating in an unusual partnership to create their view of a future sustainable company.

Book Review: The Civil Corporation (09/28)
The New Economy brings increased competition, faster dissemination of information and the rise of corporate citizenship.

EPA Partners with Businesses to Promote Green Power (09/27)
Voluntary program has enlisted companies, cities, universities and others with the aim of boosting the market for renewable energy.

Companies Cut Pollution Through E-commuting (08/28)
A federal government pilot program will give participating companies pollution credits based on the emission reductions achieved by telecommuting employees.

Where Good Returns May Flow (07/26)
California water investment partnership believes the water industry is a little-known spigot for solid returns.

Benchmarking Corporate Environmental and Social Reporting (07/12)
Recent survey examines the environmental and social reporting practices of the 100 largest global firms.

Labor Standards Resolutions Garner Support in 2001 Proxy Season (07/11)
Ten international labor and human rights proposals that came to vote this year received 10 percent or more support from shareowners.

Americans Increasingly Interested in Corporate Citizenship (07/10)
Survey indicates that Americans are looking for good corporate citizens, but are having difficulty finding them.

Watchdog Challenges Southern Company To Clean the Air (07/06)
The "Clean-Up Southern Company" campaign led by U.S. PIRG is educating consumers about Southern Company and air pollution.

Companies Using NAFTA to Undermine Legitimate Regulations (06/12)
New report explains how the U.S., Canadian and Mexican governments' ability to regulate in the public interest is being eroded by NAFTA's Chapter 11.

Better Corporate Governance Pays Off for Large Companies in Emerging Markets (06/04)
Recent study across global emerging markets finds large companies with good corporate governance yield better bottom lines.

Getting Boards to Address the Triple Bottom Line (05/15)
New report proposes a set of principles and actions to assist corporate boards in addressing the triple bottom line of economic, social and environmental performance.

SAM Sees Future Profits in Energy (04/25)
New European investment company will invest in companies with innovative technologies and services that realize more efficient and environment-friendly energy use.

Business Group Supports Sustainability Via the Market Economy (04/24)
New report identifies seven factors companies must address in order to realize sustainable practices.

Major UK Fund Manager to Require Environmental Reporting (04/19)
Institutional investors are increasingly seeing the need for environmental disclosure.

Environmental Groups Endorse Shareholder Resolutions (04/12)
Environmental advocates ask for support for pro-environmental resolutions at a wide range of companies.

Do You Own Nuclear Power Stock? (04/10)
Well-known conventional mutual funds and asset managers are looking to catch profits from nuclear power’s revival.

Thirty-one Companies to Test Sustainability Reporting Guidelines (04/06)
Structured feedback will help shape the next generation of Global Reporting Initiative guidelines.

Shopping for Responsibility (04/02)
Internet site is helping consumers base shopping decisions on values.

Procter & Gamble Heads List of 100 Best Corporate Citizens (03/28)
Business Ethics magazine recently published their annual rankings of the companies that best serve a diverse group of stakeholders.

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