Education / General Social Investing
Climate Scientist Joins Exxon Board (02/03)
The oil and gas giant responds to years of shareowner action by appointing atmospheric scientist Susan Avery to its board of directors.
Investors Challenge Mutual Funds on Proxy Voting (01/20)
Sustainable investment firms respond to update by Ceres by pressuring mutual funds on their proxy voting records relating to climate change. Second in a two-part series.
Many Large Mutual Funds Continue Failure to Address Climate Change (01/07)
Ceres updates its annual report on voting climate-related resolutions by mutual funds, noting that several PRI signatories failed to support a single resolution in 2016. First in a two-part series.
US Chamber Targeted Senate in 2016 Dark Money Spending (01/02)
Public Citizen reports that only the National Rifle Association spent more than the Chamber of Commerce’s $30 million during the 2016 federal election.
Companies Challenged to Adopt Science-Based Climate Goals (12/17)
Over 100 publicly traded companies have reported to CDP that they will adopt science-based emissions reduction plans, and letters from members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility intend to hold them to their promises.
Investors Target Chevron for Doing Business in Burma (12/16)
A shareowner resolution co-filed by Azzad Asset Management requests that Chevron cease doing business with the government of Burma until state-sanctioned violence against the Rohingya minority is ended.
Impact Measurement Can Drive Business Value (08/26)
The Global Impact Investing Network surveys impact investors and learns that in addition to environmental and social benefits, measuring their investments can improve financial performance.
Human Rights Most Important Issue in Corporate Supply Chains (08/18)
Ethical Corporation reports on the results of its survey of corporations and other stakeholders, addressing risk and opportunity in corporate supply chains.
SEC Urged to Strengthen ESG Reporting Requirements (08/12)
Ceres organizes an investor coalition calling for regulations to strengthen corporate climate reporting, while US SIF and ICCR issue a joint press release urging mandatory sustainability reporting.
After the Conventions (07/30)
While it seems implausible that investors concerned with environmental and social justice will vote for Donald Trump, some of the positions take by Hillary Clinton during her years of public service merit scrutiny.
Major Pension Funds Still Funding Deforestation (07/29)
Friends of the Earth and As You Sow create a free online database to help educate individual investors about which retirement funds continue to invest in companies engaged in deforestation for palm oil production.
Banking Lags on Human Rights (07/08)
A report by the NGO BankTrack reveals that most major global banks are failing to implement the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights in their financing.
Are Big Banks Ignoring Paris Climate Agreement? (07/07)
The seventh edition of the Fossil Fuel Finance Report Card reveals that while some progress has been made in exiting the financing of coal mining, global financial institutions are lagging badly in other extreme fossil fuels and human rights.
$5 Trillion Investor Coalition Supports Human Rights Benchmark (06/24)
The coalition, coordinated by Boston Common Asset Management, hopes that the Corporate Human Rights Benchmark will help improve corporate human rights disclosures and aid investors in their engagement with companies.
Pepsi Challenged on Palm Oil Worker Exploitation (06/21)
A report from three NGOs reveals that violations of workers' rights on the palm oil plantations of PepsiCo's joint venture partner in Indonesia includes child labor.
BlackRock Shareowners Vote on CEO Pay (05/26)
The Stephen M. Silberstein Revocable Trust files a shareowner resolution with the mutual funds giant, requesting that its proxy voting practices reflect a link between executive compensation and corporate performance.
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.
Second Benchmark of Corporate Human Rights Performance Launches (04/30)
KnowTheChain, founded in 2013 to address California's Supply Chain Transparency Act, will initially benchmark the human rights performance of 20 companies in the information and communications technology industry sector.
Institutional Investors Support Increase in Solar Deployment (04/29)
The Green Infrastructure Investment Coalition, launched during the COP21 negotiations, now counts over $60 trillion in assets under management supporting a trillion dollar investment in solar.
Despite Climate Commitments, World Bank Still Funding Fossil Fuels (04/22)
Oil Change International reports that the World Bank Group's investments in fossil fuel exploration actually increased in 2015, to $313 million.
Investors Challenge Food Companies on Antibiotics (04/15)
The collaborative investor network Farm Animal Investment Risk & Return writes to ten of the largest restaurant chains, requesting policies addressing overuse of medically necessary antibiotics.
Walden Updates Shareowner Action on Lobbying (04/11)
Tim Smith of Walden Asset Management posts update on the 50 shareowner proposal addressing corporate lobbying expenditures filed this proxy season.
Investors Win Battles for Shareowner Votes on Climate at Exxon (04/01)
Resolutions addressing the moral imperative of limiting climate change and the manner in which the company reports oil reserves replacement will appear on proxy ballot following SEC decision.
Corporate Human Rights Benchmark Launched (03/31)
Members of the Corporate Human Rights Benchmark complete methodology based in part on UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and plan to publish the first benchmark of corporate human rights performance in November.
Community Capital Management Publishes Annual Impact Report (03/21)
In a webinar, Chief Impact Investment Officer David Sand emphasizes the importance the sustainable fixed income firm places on environmental and social impacts.
A Wealth of Insights in the 2016 Proxy Preview (03/11)
Report authors Heidi Welsh and Michael Passoff detail a total of 314 pending shareowner resolutions, the majority of which target environmental issues and corporate political activities.
Demand for Impact Capital in Southern Africa Faces Challenges (03/07)
The Global Impact Investing Network finds ample opportunities for increased sustainable investment in the region, but acknowledges that challenges to development persist.
ICCR Publishes 2016 Proxy Voting Guide (02/25)
Members of the faith-based investor organization have filed 257 shareowner resolutions thus far this proxy season, with climate change and corporate political expenditures receiving the most attention.
Obama to Propose New Fee on Oil (02/05)
Citing the opportunities in addressing climate change, the President's budget proposal will include a $10 per barrel fee on oil that will be used to build a sustainable national transportation infrastructure.
Exxon Opts for Business as Usual on Climate Change (02/03)
The oil and gas giant challenges a shareowner resolution from Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility members, requesting that it commit to global temperature increase limits.
After a Successful Proxy Season, Walden Asset Management Sets Sights on 2016 (01/27)
The sustainable investment firm reports on its shareowner action during the 2015 proxy season, and begins 2016 with resolutions addressing corporate climate change lobbying and emissions reporting.
Community Capital Management a Top Fund Performer in 2015 (01/23)
The fund tracker Morningstar ranks the performance of the firm's fixed income investment product among the top one percent of 309 funds in the intermediate government category.
Ceres Launches Online Database of Corporate SEC Filings on Climate Change (01/22)
The organization collaborates with CookESG Research to provide an online tool for searching corporate filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission on carbon asset risks and other sustainability factors. Third in a three-part series.
In Wake of COP21, Shareowners Challenge Corporate Lobbying on Climate (01/16)
A shareowner initiative coordinated by Walden Asset Management requests that fossil fuel companies disclose lobbying activities and review public policy advocacy on energy policy and climate change. Second in a three-part series.
Resolution on Climate Change Will Be on Franklin Templeton's Proxy Ballot (12/10)
A proposal submitted by Zevin Asset Management, requesting that the mutual fund company “assess any incongruities” in its proxy voting practices relating to climate change, is allowed onto proxy ballot by the SEC.
Companies Profiting from Mass Incarceration Mapped for Investors (11/25)
The American Friends Service Committee publishes research on for-profit prison companies and recommends that investors divest their holdings in five.
Scientists Join Call for Exxon Investigation (11/19)
In the wake of reports detailing the oil giant's duplicity on climate change, the Union of Concerned Scientists join legislators and others in urging a Department of Justice investigation.
NGOs Urge Green Climate Fund to Deny Accreditation to Scandal-Plagued Banks (11/14)
HSBC and Crédit Agricole finance environmentally destructive projects and rank at the bottom of major banks in implementing the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. Second in a two-part series.
First Investments Approved by Green Climate Fund (11/13)
Eight climate change mitigation or adaptation projects—three in Africa, three in Asia-Pacific, and two in Latin America—mark the end of the Green Climate Fund's two-year launch period and the beginning of providing financing to developing nations. First in a two-part series.
Bank Financing of Fossil Fuels Dwarfs that of Renewables (11/10)
A new study by Fair Finance Guide and BankTrack reveals that since 2009, investment in fossil fuels by 75 of the world's largest financial institutions is more than nine times greater than investment in renewable energy.
Banks Still Failing to Incorporate Climate Risks in Lending (11/05)
A year after Boston Common Asset Management organized an investor initiative, major global banks continue to fail to account for greenhouse gas emissions in their lending and underwriting portfolios.
Labor Department Repeals Controversial Fiduciary Standard (10/31)
A 2008 ERISA standard that has discouraged pension plan fiduciaries from considering environmental and social factors in investment strategy has finally been repealed.
Skepticism Greets Oil Industry Statement on Climate Change (10/21)
Even before member companies of the Oil and Gas Climate initiative issued a statement supporting a climate deal in Paris in December, the Union of Concerned Scientists question the extent of the industry's commitment.
Justice Department Urged to Investigate Exxon (10/19)
After two reports identify research into global warming by the oil giant as far back as the 1970s, two members of the House of Representatives call on the Justice Department to investigate the corporation for its campaign to deceive the American public about the risks of climate change.
Pope Francis Talks Climate Change in Speech at UN (10/15)
A global perception of his moral authority may contribute momentum to a meaningful deal at December's climate talks in Paris.
Investors Support Human Trafficking Legislation (09/25)
More than 100 institutional investors call for passage in Congress of The Business Supply Chain Transparency on Trafficking and Slavery Act of 2015.
Investors Call for Support of EPA Methane Regulations (09/22)
A coalition of investors organized by the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility writes to 32 energy companies, requesting that they support new regulations on methane emissions.
The Investment Implications of Mass Incarceration (09/21)
In a three-part series and subsequent conference call, Sonia Kowal of Zevin Asset Management outlines for foundations and other investors the importance of aligning their strategies with their social missions.
Letter to Obama: No Drilling on Public Lands (09/18)
Hundreds of signatories call on the President to end the policy of leasing federal lands for fossil fuel exploration and extraction.
Holy Land Principles Calls for Fair Employment in Palestine (09/09)
Modeled on the MacBride Principles of Northern Ireland, the eight Holy Land Principles call on US companies doing business in Israel and Palestine to practice fair employment.
Investors Call on Corporations to Oppose Chamber's Challenge to Clean Power Plan (09/04)
Fifty prominent members of the Chamber of Commerce receive letters from investors, requesting that they address contradictions between their public positions on climate change and their funding of the Chamber's opposition to the Clean Power Plan.
MacArthur Foundation Focuses on Climate Change (09/03)
The Foundation launches its Climate Solutions initiative with $50 million in grants, to help ensure that the US meets its responsibilities in addressing the crisis of climate change.
Another Major Religion Gets the Implications of Climate Change (08/26)
Two months after Pope Francis delivers his encyclical on climate change, Islamic Relief hosts a climate change symposium and publishes the Islamic Declaration on Global Climate Change.
Major Food and Beverage Companies Fail to Manage Water Risks (08/24)
As water scarcity becomes a major issue for sustainable development, a coalition of investors organized by Ceres calls for better water management and disclosure by 15 major food and beverage corporations.
Drilling in the Arctic, Mining at the Grand Canyon (08/21)
President Obama's legacy on climate will be compromised by Shell drilling for oil in the Arctic, and the Grand Canyon is under siege from uranium mining and tourism development.
EPA Proposes Methane Cuts for Oil and Gas Sector (08/20)
The proposed standards, part of the Obama administration's Climate Action Plan, will reduce methane emissions in the oil and gas industry by as much as 45% by 2025.
Report Details Impact Investment Opportunities in East Africa (08/12)
The Global Impact Investing Network and Open Capital Advisors publish a country by country analysis of impact investing activity in the region.
Investment Losses from Climate Change to Be in Trillions, Report States (08/07)
The Economist Intelligence Unit warns that $4.2 trillion in assets could be at risk, with losses exponentially greater for every increase in global temperature.
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.
EIRIS Compiles Database of Companies Doing Business in Crimea and Palestine (07/27)
The EIRIS Foundation releases an online database of companies in Crimea and Palestine, providing for investors and other stakeholders objective and independent research about corporate activity in occupied territories.
Rankings of 2014 Corporate Social Responsibility Reports Are Published (07/24)
Baruch College's Weissman Center for International Business analyzes corporate social responsibility reporting from the largest US and international companies, and publishes an online ranking that allows investors and other stakeholders to review the quality of CSR reports.
Green Bond Investments Reach $600 Billion (07/13)
The fourth edition of Bonds and Climate Change, published by the Climate Bonds Initiative, reports that 70% of climate-aligned bonds are invested in low-carbon transport, while another 20% focus on clean energy.
Corporate Human Rights Benchmark Publishes Draft of Key Performance Indicators (07/11)
The Benchmark publishes two documents about which it seeks input: a framework for multi-stakeholder consultations, and a draft list of key performance indicators.
Consumer Goods Companies Commit to Halving Food Waste (07/10)
Four hundred corporate members of the Consumer Goods Forum commit to a sustainability program that includes halving food waste within their operations by 2025.
Investors Support White House Plan to Cut Methane Emissions (07/07)
The Obama Administration proposes to reduce methane emissions from the oil and gas industry by at least 45% by 2025, and investors coordinated by Ceres and Trillium Asset Management issue a statement expressing their support.
Investors Tell Corporations to Meet Burma Reporting Requirements (07/01)
Sustainable investment firms representing more than $40 billion in assets under management write to three corporations doing business in Burma, urging them to comply with the Burma Responsible Investment Reporting Requirements.
Benchmarking Tool for Toxic Chemicals in Consumer Products Launched (06/30)
The Chemical Footprint Project, backed by investors and corporations representing more than $1 trillion in investing and purchasing power, is the first tool for benchmarking corporate chemical use and management.
Laudato Si Makes Waves Throughout Society (06/27)
Sustainable investors and climate deniers alike weigh in with responses and reactions to Pope Francis's landmark encyclical on climate change. Second in a two-part series.
Pope Francis Delivers Encyclical on Climate Change (06/20)
The Pope makes explicit the connection between climate action, poverty, and morality, and calls for a radical shift away from current failures and toward an “ecological conversion” instead. First in a two-part series.
And Now for Something Completely Different (06/16)
The Heartland Institute hosts its annual conference on climate change, at which such scientific luminaries as climate denying Senator James Inhofe of Oklahoma are honored.
Morgan Stanley Issues $500 Million Green Bond (06/15)
The investment bank intends to fund a number of wind energy projects in the US.
Two Years After Tragedy, Fund for Rana Plaza Victims Meets Goal (06/13)
Pressure from members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility helps further corporate responsibility in the remediation of human rights violations.
Shareowners Target Amazon on Human Rights and Climate (06/12)
Sustainable shareowners submitted four resolutions addressing environmental, social, and corporate governance issues at this week's annual general meeting, as pressure grows for the company to improve its sustainability performance.
Community Capital Management Expands Green Bond Offerings (06/08)
The fixed income investment adviser offers opportunities for sustainable investors to meet their community investment mission.
Verite to Assess Trafficking Risks in Sub-Saharan Africa (06/01)
With economies improving and ample natural resources, the region is at heightened risk for human trafficking violations.
Report Assesses Corporate Conflict Minerals Disclosures (05/30)
The Responsible Sourcing Network analyzes the quality of more that 1,000 conflict minerals disclosures by large cap corporations, and find that many fulfilled only minimal requirements.
Resolutions Request Emissions Reduction Goals by Exxon and Chevron (05/29)
A process for shareowners to declare their intention to vote in favor of emissions reduction resolutions at the annual meetings of the oil and gas giants does not appear to have led to substantial votes in favor, but signal that investors who choose engagement as a strategy will remain aggressive.
Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz Takes on Income Inequality (05/16)
“It would be easier, politically, to push for one or two policies on which we have consensus, but that approach would be insufficient to match the severity of the problems posed by rising inequality,” his new report states. First of a two-part series.
Regenerative Capitalism Seeks Radical Overhaul of Financial System (05/07)
John Fullerton, the founder of the Capital Institute, writes that the transition of an “antisocial” global financial system to one aligned with our understanding that “living systems are both sustainable and regenerative” is underway. But is the evolution decisive enough to solve the crises of our age? Second of a three-part series.
Is Regenerative Capitalism a Spiritual Quest? (05/05)
John Fullerton of the Capital Institute authors an admirable paper on what he calls Regenerative Capitalism, but how do we get from the here of exploitation to there? First of a three-part series.
Carbon Tracker Offers Roadmap for Energy Transition (05/01)
Asserting that many executives in the oil and gas industry assume a business as usual approach in their planning, the NGO warns that unconventional exploration and price volatility will have negative impacts for investors.
Two Years after Rana Plaza Tragedy, Investors Still Seek Corporate Assurances (04/28)
A coalition of institutional investors asserts that the systemic changes needed to safeguard garment workers in Bangladesh remain insufficiently financed, even by signatories to the Fire and Safety Accord.
Forest Conservation Strategy Wins Morgan Stanley Sustainable Investing Challenge (04/21)
Four students from the Haas School of Business are awarded the $10 thousand grand prize for developing an institutional investment vehicle that will help alleviate drought and reduce forest fire risk.
$120 Million Green Bond from Nordic Investment Bank (04/20)
The fixed income issuance, driven by investors incorporating environmental, social, and corporate governance factors, will finance loans to environmental projects in Scandinavia.
Investors Call on SEC to Require Effective Climate Risk Disclosure (04/18)
In a letter to SEC Chair Mary Jo White, a coalition of investors organized by Ceres offers specific criticisms of disclosures by major oil and gas companies, and argues that climate risk is changing the economics of the industry.
Harvard Students Mount Blockade in Campaign for Divestment (04/17)
The Divest Harvard demonstrators block access to administrative offices during Harvard Heat Week as analyses of the university's investments find significant levels of greenhouse gas emissions.
Electronics Trade Association Prohibits Payments to Labor Brokers (04/10)
The amendment to the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition's Code of Conduct follows engagement on the issue of payments to labor brokers by members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility.
Market for Conservation Investments Expected to Grow Dramatically (04/03)
A first ever report on the practice of conservation investing, co-authored by The Nature Conservancy, anticipates that private investment will triple by 2018, from $2 billion to nearly $6 billion.
No Financial Sacrifice in Sustainable Investing (03/30)
The Morgan Stanley Institute for Sustainable Investing analyzes thousands of sustainable mutual funds and separately managed accounts, and finds that most meet or exceed the performance of traditional investments.
US Coal Crash Structural, not Cyclical, Report States (03/27)
The Carbon Tracker Initiative's latest report reveals that bankruptcies are rampant in the US coal industry as cheap natural gas and a strengthening renewable market indicate that the decline of coal will be permanent.
Corporate Sustainability Measures Fail to Address Impacts (03/26)
The 2015 State of Green Business report, published by GreenBiz with environmental data supplied by Trucost, confirms that corporate sustainability efforts and disclosures are insufficient.
Community Capital Management Outlines Plans for $100 Million in Rural Development Bonds (03/23)
The Florida based fixed income investment adviser published a report in which it reveals that it plans to invest $100 million in bonds financing rural community development.
Corporations Improving on LGBT Rights (03/20)
Evolution in social acceptance of diversity, as well as years of shareowner engagement by Walden Asset Management, leads to many companies adopting sexual orientation and gender identity policies.
Shareowners Continue Push for Fracking Disclosure (03/17)
Six companies are recipients of resolutions this proxy season, calling for greater disclosure of environmental and community risks associated with hydraulic fracturing.
Report Analyzes Impact Investing Funds (03/09)
The Global Impact Investing Network reports on more than 300 impact investment funds that direct investments by foundations and high net worth individuals to social and environmental opportunities in North America and emerging markets.
Good News for Shareowner Engagement on Food Issues (03/07)
Dunkin Brands agrees to remove nanomaterials from powdered sugar, and Dow Chemical commits to increased disclosure on its management of environmental and social impacts associated with an herbicide used with genetically engineered seeds.
Individual Investors Struggle with Sustainability (03/06)
More than half of individual investors surveyed by Morgan Stanley believe financial returns will be compromised by a sustainable investment strategy, but demand from millennials and women are likely to drive an increase in the strategy.
Second Global Sustainable Investment Association Review Published (03/03)
Negative screening persists as the investment strategy most often practiced, but integration of environmental, social, and corporate governance considerations into financial analysis has grown at the fastest rate over the last two years.
Investors Back Reporting Framework for Human Rights (02/28)
The United Nations Guiding Principles Reporting Framework is launched to help corporations report effectively on human rights issues, and gains the support of a $4 trillion coalition of institutional investors organized by Boston Common Asset Management.
Citi Announces $100 Billion Sustainability Commitment (02/27)
Having met several targets of a $50 billion goal two years early, the bank now commits twice that amount to activities such as financing large renewable-energy projects and reducing its absolute emissions by 80%.
BP Calls for Price on Carbon (02/25)
Arguing that emissions are rising significantly more than scientists recommend, the oil and gas company states that a meaningful global price on carbon will incentivize participation in a low-carbon transition.
Shell Demonstrates Tunnel Vision Version of Climate Change (02/23)
The oil and gas company endorses a shareowner resolution requesting a sustainable approach to stranded assets, but signals that it will resume costly and ineffectual drilling for oil in the Arctic.
Twenty-Five Resolutions on Board Diversity Filed in 2015 (02/21)
Institutional investors affiliated with the Thirty Percent Coalition step up their shareowner efforts to pressure corporations to elect women to their boards of directors
Human Rights Abuses in Burmese Mining Industry (02/19)
A new report from Amnesty International identifies companies from Canada and China that have profited from serious human rights abuses at the Monywa copper mine complex in Burma.
Corporate Responsibility for Farm Animal Welfare Benchmarked (02/14)
Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare aspires to improve living conditions for animals raised for food by benchmarking corporate performance on farm animal welfare.
Corporate Responsibility for Waste Reduction Insufficient (02/11)
As You Sow and the Natural Resources Defense Council report that the lack of strong recycling policies and insufficient practices by companies are factors in low recycling rates in the United States.
ICCR Publishes 2015 Proxy Resolutions and Voting Guide (02/09)
Climate change and wealth inequality lead members of the the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility to increase for the third year in a row the number of shareowner resolutions filed. Second of a two-part series.
Journal Devotes Issue to Faith-Based Investors (02/06)
An issue of Green Money Journal, guest edited by Mark Regier of Everence, explores the history and aspirations of faith-based sustainable investing. First of a two-part series.
Strong Shareowner Support for Lobbying Disclosure at Monsanto (02/04)
A resolution filed by As You Sow gains one-quarter of shareowners' votes at biotech company's annual meeting, and a similar resolution is scheduled to be voted on in April at DuPont.
Board of Directors Endorses Climate Change Resolution at Shell (02/03)
By endorsing a shareowner resolution filed by members of the Aiming for A investor coalition, the oil giant agrees to report on several aspects of climate risk, including portfolio resilience in post-2035 scenarios.
Investors Urged to Challenge Fossil Fuel Industry Assumptions on Risk (01/31)
Ceres hosts a press call in which investors express concerns that the oil and gas industry relies on a business as usual scenario in planning capital expenditures.
Climate Resilient Supply Chains Remain a Work in Progress (01/29)
CDP's new report comparing corporate supply chains by countries finds that the response of US suppliers to climate risk exposure is insufficient, while China and India offer the best financial returns from emissions reduction activities in supply chains.
Social Cost of Carbon to Threaten Global Economy (01/27)
A report published in the journal Nature Climate Change warns that worsening climate change impacts could lead to dramatic increases in the social cost of carbon unless short-term mitigation measures are taken.
Over 50 Institutional Investors Call for Improved Annual Reporting from BP and Shell (01/26)
Invigorated shareowner engagement in the UK leads to resolutions requesting that the two companies with the largest carbon footprints in the FTSE 100 report on strategies to address climate change.
1% to Own More than Half the Wealth by Next Year (01/23)
A briefing by Oxfam reveals that lobbying on budget and tax issues in the US has contributed to enabling the richest 1% of people in the world to compile 48% of global wealth, a percentage that is likely to exceed 50% by 2016.
Sanders to Republicans: Believe in Climate Science? (01/22)
After assurances by by Republican leader McConnell that all amendments to a bill to approve the Keystone pipeline will be voted on, the Senate votes not to vote on amendment submitted by Senator Sanders of Vermont. Second of a two-part series.
New Congress Off to Expected Start (01/16)
The Republican majority votes to roll back key elements of the Dodd-Frank bill, and Bernie Sanders introduces an amendment to force Senators to vote on whether or not they believe the science of climate change. First of a two-part series.
Sex Trafficking and Murder in North Dakota Fracking Lands (01/14)
Forum News Service publishes expose on human trafficking in the Oil Patch in western North Dakota, while the New York Times reports on corruption and murder on Native American reservation there.
January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month (01/12)
While business increasingly acknowledges its responsibility to help eradicate human trafficking in all its forms, more robust efforts are needed to protect the world's most vulnerable people.
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.
Report Calls for Climate Resilient Stock Exchanges (01/06)
Arguing that risks associated with climate change are increasingly likely to destroy value, the Climate Disclosure Standards Board calls on stock exchanges to mandate corporate reporting that includes climate risk assessments.
New Controls for Old Risks at JPMorgan Chase (01/02)
In response to shareowner pressure, the bank endorses the Shareholder-Director Exchange as a means of improving the quality of engagement between investors and board directors. Second of a two-part series.
JPMorgan Publishes Governance Report in Return for Resolution Withdrawal (12/30)
Members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility withdraw a key corporate governance resolution after the financial institution agrees to publish a report detailing its efforts at governance reform. First of a two-part series.
Sustainable Investment Firms Offer Guide to Fossil Fuel Investing (12/29)
Along with 350.org, Green Century Capital Management and Trillium Asset Management update a guide for investors who want to divest from fossil fuel companies and reallocate their assets to sustainability.
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.
Heartening Developments in the War on Coal (12/26)
The Department of the Interior proposes that coal companies pay royalties on federal leases, and the Environmental Protection Agency announces new regulations for coal ash disposal. First of a two-part series.
Corporate Human Rights Benchmark Gains Government Support (12/24)
The benchmark, which will rank 500 major corporations in four industry sectors on their human rights performance, wins financial support from the UK government. Second of a two-part series.
Child Labor in African Cocoa Industry Persists (12/22)
Poverty among cocoa farmers in West Africa has challenged efforts to eradicate child labor, while initiative to benchmark corporations in the agricultural and other industry sectors gains support. First of a two-part series.
Addressing Climate Change Means Honoring Human Rights (12/17)
A large coalition of civil society groups called on climate negotiators to factor human rights into agreements, but CARE concludes that the failure of governments to act leaves the world's most vulnerable people at risk.
Energy Companies Fail to Disclose Impacts of Fracking Operations (12/13)
The third edition of Disclosing the Facts, published by a coalition of sustainable investment organizations, reveals that companies engaged in hydraulic fracturing continue to prioritize empty assurances over meaningful data.
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.
Green Bonds Growth a Positive Development in 2014 (12/10)
In a year when ExxonMobil rejects stranded assets and half a million march for climate in New York, green bonds offer an increasingly popular fixed-income investment strategy for sustainable investors.
Efforts Underway to Benchmark Companies on Human Rights (12/04)
A coalition launches project to rank companies on human rights as BankTrack reports that few financial institutions are making progress on the issue.
Public Works Needed for Low Carbon Transition (12/03)
A 2013 briefing by academics from the University of Greenwich argues forcefully for the management by the public sector of a transition to renewable energy, and is cited in Naomi Klein's book This Changes Everything.
Sustainable Assets Up by 76% Since 2012 (11/28)
The biennial Trends Report by US SIF reveals that consideration of environmental, social, and corporate governance factors by money managers has contributed to sustainable assets in the US that now total $6.57 trillion.
Investors Ratchet Up Engagement Over Stranded Assets (11/26)
Undeterred by ExxonMobil's plan to burn all fossil fuel reserves already on its books, As You Sow and Arjuna Capital file a shareowner resolution requesting that the company return capital to investors rather than embark on further exploration.
Record High Support for ESG Resolutions by Shareowners in 2014 (11/25)
More resolutions addressing environmental, social, and corporate governance issues were filed by shareowners in 2014 than ever before, and proxy voting results thus far indicate record support for them as well.
Generic Drug Prices and Clinical Trials Come Under Scrutiny (11/21)
A number of recent new reports call into question some commitments to corporate social responsibility by companies in the pharmaceutical industry. Second of a two-part series.
2014 Access to Medicine Index Published (11/20)
Sustainable investors note improvements by pharmaceutical companies in areas of access and affordability but call for more rigorous codes of conduct and transparency around when patents will expire. First of a two-part series.
China Climate Agreement a First for Developing Nations (11/15)
In agreement with US, China commits to emissions reductions for the first time. But as a Natural Resources Defense Council report points out, the nation will have to make significant strides in reducing emissions from its ports and shipping systems.
Despite Pledges, G20 Subsidies of Fossil Fuel Exploration Continue (11/12)
Oil Change International co-authors a study which reveals that the Group of 20 governments spend $88 billion a year subsidizing exploration of fossil fuel reserves that cannot be burned if worst effects of climate change are to be averted.
Phase Out Fossil Fuels by 2100, IPCC Warns (11/03)
The Synthesis Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warns that further delay in aggressive mitigation efforts will substantially increase the risks of severe and irreversible impacts on human life and ecosystems.
Extreme Weather and the Need for Resilient Power (10/31)
Clean Energy Group continues its Resilient Power Project with a report outlining strategies for financing energy generation alternatives that can remain operative during extreme weather events.
Contrasting Views on the Financing of Coal (10/30)
Rainforest Action Network congratulates US investment banks for backing away from Australian coal export terminal, while BankTrack reports that $83 billion was provided by banks to finance coal mining and coal power projects.
ECPAT-USA Continues Private Sector Engagement (10/29)
The organization's efforts to eradicate the commercial sexual exploitation of children have succeeded in encouraging more than 35 companies to implement the Tourism Child Protection Code of Conduct.
Financing Food Justice a Priority for ICCR Members (10/25)
Members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility commemorated the recent World Food Day by calling for sustainable food systems and palm oil sourcing.
Investor Campaign for Board Diversity Heats Up (10/23)
Institutional investors representing more than $3 trillion in assets under management join with women's organizations to call for gender diversity on the boards of Russell 1000 companies.
Procter & Gamble Agrees to 90% Recyclable Packaging by 2020 (10/22)
But the personal products company inserts caveat into agreement by saying that it will either ensure that 90% of its packaging is recyclable or that “that programs are in place to recycle it" by then.
BICEP Member Patagonia Launches Vote the Environment Campaign (10/20)
The apparel company campaigns to overcome voter apathy in the US in order to elect officials who will support replacing fossil fuels with renewable energy.
Fossil Fuel Companies Failing to Integrate Risk (10/18)
Research by the Carbon Tracker Initiative reveals that while most fossil fuel companies acknowledge climate change as a risk, very few are integrating climate risks into project and capital expenditure assessments.
Founder of Hope Credit Union Receives 2014 Ned Gramlich Award for Responsible Finance (10/17)
Bill Bynum, CEO of the Mississippi-based Hope Credit Union, is awarded for his efforts to advance economic opportunity in low-income communities.
Is Child Labor in Uzbekistan Cotton Fields Decreasing? (10/16)
As You Sow's Responsible Sourcing Network reports that Tesco, the world's second largest retailer, has signed the Cotton Pledge and will avoid the use of cotton sourced from Uzbekistan until child labor is eliminated.
Investors Call for Oil and Gas Methane Regulation (10/13)
In a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency, investors with more than $300 billion in assets under management call for regulation of methane emissions from the oil and gas industry.
Federal Program Helps Wall Street, not Homeowners (10/08)
Distressed mortgages insured by the Federal Housing Administration are being sold to the highest bidder without regard to neighborhood stabilization. First of a two-part series.
Coal Keeps Getting Riskier for Investors (10/05)
The Carbon Tracker Initiative projects that as the demand for coal exports slows in China, $112 billion in planned future coal mine expansion and development is at risk of losing money.
$50 Million to be Invested in Sustainable Agriculture (10/04)
Community Capital Management commits to investing $50 million of fixed income investments in sustainable agriculture initiatives.
Institutional Investors Pledge to Disclose Carbon Footprint of Portfolios (10/01)
Signatories to the Montreal Pledge, launched at last week's UN Climate Summit, will measure and disclose the carbon footprint of their investment portfolios on an annual basis.
Maybe Some Good Things Came out of Climate Summit (09/30)
Business commitments on deforestation and renewable energy are not enough to overcome government inaction and the resolve of the fossil fuel industry to burn all its assets and explore for more.
Voluntary Corporate Disclosure of Political Spending Improves (09/27)
The fourth annual CPA-Zicklin Index, which tracks voluntary disclosures of political spending by major corporations, notes improved transparency in the absence of effective regulation.
White House Announces Anticorruption Agenda for Business (09/25)
The Obama administrations says it will develop a National Action Plan “to promote and incentivize responsible business conduct, including with respect to transparency and anticorruption.”
Civil Action Grows to Unprecedented Heights. So Do Emissions. (09/22)
Upwards of 400,000 people take to the streets of New York City to demand meaningful action on climate change, and scientists report that greenhouse gas emissions reached record levels in 2013
NGOs Express Concern that Climate Summit Could be Hijacked (09/21)
An extensive network of nongovernmental organizations write to the UN Secretary-General arguing that private investment is not a replacement for public funds, while a campaign by the Indigenous Environmental Network warns against influence of corporations in the upcoming Climate Summit. Second in a two-part series.
Widespread Forced Labor in Malaysian Electronics Industry (09/19)
A study by Verite finds that nearly one-third of foreign migrant workers in the Malaysian electronics industry work under conditions of forced labor.
As You Sow Launches Shareowner Initiative on Executive Compensation (09/18)
With the ratio of CEO to average employee pay at 300:1 and increasing, As You Sow announced an Executive Compensation initiative to encourage shareowners to link executive pay to meaningful performance goals.
China To Launch National Market for Emissions Trading (09/16)
The emissions trading scheme, scheduled to launch in 2016, would be the world's largest and is expected to help China reach its goal of reducing emissions by 45% by 2020.
Opportunities for Green Bond Investment Increasing (09/15)
The investment advisory firm Community Capital Management publishes a white paper describing several green bond opportunities that have become increasingly popular among sustainable fixed income investors.
Bank of America Delisted from Leading Sustainability Index (09/13)
The bank, which had been listed on the Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes despite its leading role in financing coal projects, is delisted in 2014, but questions remain over some of the Index's industry sector leaders and other constituents.
Carbon Tracker Analysis Refutes Exxon Claims (09/12)
The analysis reveals that unconventional oil and gas exploration has contributed to ExxonMobil underperforming the S&P 500 by eight percent over five years, and that the company has not adequately stress tested a future low carbon scenario.
Reporting by Equator Banks Lacks Transparency (09/10)
An academic paper published by the Center for International Governance Innovation concludes that only five percent of financial institutions reporting to the Equator Principles disclose all the information required of them.
Regulate Corporate Political Spending, One Million Say to SEC (09/06)
At a press conference organized by members of the Corporate Reform Coalition, sustainable investors and other corporate governance advocates call on the Securities and Exchange Commission to mandate political spending disclosure by corporations.
Thai Company Sues Activist for Revealing Human Rights Abuses (09/03)
Instead of addressing human rights violations in its workplace, Natural Fruit sues British activist Andy Hall for defamation, a charge that could land him in jail for eight years.
Integrity of UK Supply Chains Threatened by Complacency (08/29)
The Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply finds that only eleven percent of UK-based supply chain professionals say they have visibility throughout their entire corporate supply chains.
Addressing Pollution a Top Priority for Development in China (08/28)
The China Greentech Report 2014 finds that sustainable development, once considered an optional approach, is now a prerequisite as the world's largest emitter of greenhouse gases struggles with pollution in its cities.
Instability in Middle East Dampens Investment (08/26)
A white paper from Business Monitor International analyzes foreign direct investment in the Middle East and North Africa and concludes that political instability has led to declines in several countries.
California CDFI First Recipient of Guaranteed Treasury Bond (08/25)
Clearinghouse Community Development Financial Institution will use the $100 million bond to finance community development projects in California and Nevada.
Militarization of American Policing a Nationwide Problem (08/23)
An ACLU report originally published in June gains especial relevance in the wake of the paramilitary response to civil unrest in Ferguson, Missouri.
Heavy Construction Equipment and the Israeli Occupation (08/21)
Who Profits, a research organization based in Tel Aviv, issues a report analyzing the role of heavy equipment manufacturers in supporting Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories.
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.
ConAgra Joins Movement to Eliminate Deforestation (08/16)
Green Century Capital Management and the New York State Common Retirement Fund withdraw a shareowner resolution after the packaged food giant agrees to eliminate palm oil suppliers engaged in deforestation from its supply chain.
Online Petition Urges Pope to End Mandate Against US Nuns (08/11)
Despite the compassionate message of Pope Francis publicized widely by the Vatican, the effort to put Women Religious in their proper place in a patriarchal hierarchy persists.
Investors Pressure Ralph Lauren on Human Rights (08/09)
Members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility attend annual shareowner meeting of Ralph Lauren to support a resolution filed by the AFL-CIO requesting that the company conduct a human rights risk assessment.
Corporate Reporting and Materiality (08/08)
A report by the Governance & Accountability Institute assesses the materiality of key indicators in reporting to the Global Reporting Initiative by more than 1,000 corporations in 2012.
Investors Call on Banks to Consider Climate Risks (08/07)
Boston Common Asset Management publishes a report on climate risks in the banking sector and invites investors to sign on to letter to be sent to major banks.
Student Cellist Bases Composition on Climate Data (08/05)
It's as inevitable as the effects of climate change that artists will engage more deeply with the subject, and a recent chamber music festival in Ottawa, Canada featured five compositions addressing it.
Indigenous Rights Help Prevent Deforestation (08/04)
A report by the World Resources Institute and the Rights and Resources Initiative concludes that autonomous decision-making by native peoples results in improved community benefits and greater carbon storage.
Subsidies for Oil and Gas Companies Increase under Obama (08/02)
A report by Oil Change International estimates that fossil fuel exploration and production subsidies have increased by 45% since President Obama took office in 2009, as his repeated efforts to lower them have been stymied in Congress.
Colombian Securities Exchange Joins Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative (08/01)
The stock exchange becomes the second in Latin America to join the United Nations' initiative, and commissions a report from Sustainalytics on the state of sustainable investment in the region.
General Mills to Report on Supply Chain Emissions (07/29)
The company agrees to report on and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in its supply chain, joins Business for Innovative Climate & Energy Policy, and becomes a signatory to the Climate Declaration.
Electric Utilities Ranked on Renewables and Energy Efficiency (07/28)
A report from Ceres and Clean Edge benchmarks the nation’s largest electric utilities on renewable energy sales, and cumulative and incremental energy efficiency savings.
Resolutions Target GMO Labeling and Extended Producer Responsibility at Safeway (07/25)
The annual general meeting of the supermarket chain was dominated by merger talks, but health and environmental resolutions filed by Green Century and As You Sow were considered as well.
World Bank Calls for Price on Carbon (07/24)
Stating that the debate over pricing carbon has shifted from whether to how, the World Bank invites stakeholders to become signatories to a statement calling on governments to take action.
Professional Institute for Sustainability Practitioners Launched in UK (07/22)
Members of the UK-based Corporate Responsibility Group launch the Institute of Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability, a professional body for sustainability practitioners.
EPA Limits on Alaskan Pebble Mine Likely to Prevent Construction (07/21)
The Agency's proposal states that if constructed the mine would lead to unprecedented losses in streams and wetlands, and cause streamflow alterations, threatening one of the world's largest salmon fisheries.
Investors Applaud Palm Oil Sourcing Policy Announced by Smucker's (07/18)
Clean Yield Asset Management and Green Century Capital Management withdraw shareowner resolution after company commits to environmental protection by sourcing only deforestation-free palm oil.
Ways to Assess Corporate Action on Climate Change (07/15)
The Carbon Tracker 200 list provides information on the unsustainable practices of the world's largest fossil fuel companies, and Ceres collaborates on a searchable database of climate change disclosures by US companies listed on the Russell 3000 index.
UN Contemplates Rules Governing Transnational Corporations and Human Rights (07/11)
A resolution adopted by the United Nations' Human Rights Council, seeking to establish an international human rights law governing transnational corporations, is opposed by the United States and most European Union nations.
Finalists for Annual CDFI Awards Announced (07/10)
Opportunity Finance Network announces that four community development financial institutions are finalists for $8.25 million in awards provided annually for safe and affordable housing in low-income communities.
Carbon Tracker Responds to Shell on Stranded Assets (07/09)
The Carbon Tracker Initiative, whose 2011 report on stranded fossil fuel assets helped launch the fossil fuel divestment movement, joins with Energy Transition Advisors to argue that Shell's statement on stranded assets underestimates the magnitude of risk to investors.
World Leaders Urged to Act Decisively on Climate Change (07/08)
In a message to world leaders, signatories to a letter call for decisive action on climate change in order to keep global temperature increases within two degrees Celsius limit.
Privatization Harms Public Services (07/05)
A working paper published by the UK-based New Economics Foundation calls for a model of co-production of social services, in which front-line service providers and service recipients collaborate.
UK Clarifies Long Term Fiduciary Duty (07/03)
A report issued by the UK Law Commission determines that it is the duty of pension fund fiduciaries to consider environmental, social, and corporate governance factors when they could impact long-term investment.
Vermont Produces First State Level Climate Assessment in US (07/01)
The Vermont Climate Assessment partners with the recently published National Climate Assessment of the US Global Change Research to provide region-specific data on the impacts of climate change.
Partnerships Between Government and Private Sector Needed to Bring Impact Investing to Scale (06/30)
Citing the Community Reinvestment Act as an example of effective federal support, a report from the US National Advisory Board calls for additional government action to help maximize the impact of community development initiatives.
Step Back from New Oil Sands Projects, Scientists Tell North American Leaders (06/28)
Citing approval of pipelines and other oil sands projects as symptoms of a broken policy process, a group of scientists call for no new oil sands project approvals unless they are consistent with effective climate change policies.
High Level Report Outlines Risks from Climate Change in US (06/27)
The Risky Business Project releases a report warning of severe economic disruptions from rising sea levels and extreme heat.
Supreme Court Upholds EPA Authority to Regulate Greenhouse Gas Emissions (06/24)
The Court's ruling allows the Environmental Protection Agency to regulate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from sources whose conventional pollutants are already being regulated.
Human Rights Groups Commend State Department for Action on Thailand (06/23)
The 2014 Trafficking in Persons Report downgrades the status of Thailand due to widespread human trafficking and official corruption in the country's lucrative seafood industry.
Investors Tell FedEx to Distance Itself from Racist NFL Team Name (06/21)
FedEx has naming rights to Washington DC stadium that is home to the Washington Redskins, the professional football team under increasing pressure to change its racist name.
Pope Francis Calls for Sustainable Investment to Help the Poor (06/20)
At a symposium on impact investing held this week at the Vatican, the Pope calls on the capital markets to serve the good of humanity.
PRI Assets Top $45 Trillion (06/19)
During the past year the Principles of Responsible Investment added more than 200 new signatories, bringing the current number of signatories to 1,265.
Shareowner Action on Fracking Disclosure Proves Strength of Proxy (06/18)
The Investor Environmental Health Network reports that of six shareowner resolutions filed this year with companies engaged in hydraulic fracturing, four were withdrawn and two received substantial support.
Panelists at Slow Living Summit Discuss Context Based Sustainability Metrics (06/17)
Corporate sustainability architect Bill Baue leads a conversation about the importance of placing sustainability reporting in the context of planetary boundaries. Second of a two-part series.
Seminar Considers Impacts when Small Socially Responsible Companies are Acquired (06/16)
At the annual Slow Living Summit in Brattleboro, VT, managers from Ben & Jerry's and New Chapter discuss how their firms maintained social mission after being acquired by multinationals. First of a two-part series.
House Bill Calls for Corporate Disclosure of Human Trafficking Risks (06/12)
Investors issue statement in support of bill introduced this week that will require companies to disclose policies addressing human trafficking in their supply chains.
Shareowner Rights Under Attack (06/11)
Abetted by comments by an SEC commissioner, the US Chamber of Commerce petitions to keep shareowner resolutions from returning to proxy ballots.
Coal Fired Power Consumption Slowing in China (06/09)
Carbon Tracker and the Association for Sustainable and Responsible Investment in Asia report that investors need to consider the implications of significant stranded assets in China's coal sector.
Sustainability Reporting by Large Corporations Up Sharply (06/04)
In its updated analysis of sustainability reporting by S&P 500 companies, the Governance & Accountability Institute finds that almost three-quarters now do so.
EPA Announces Historic Emissions Limits for Power Plants (06/03)
More than 40% of the nation's greenhouse gas emissions come from power plants, and when enacted the new regulations will reduce emissions from existing power plants by 30% nationwide below 2005 levels.
Four Sustainability Professionals Inducted into ISSP Hall of Fame (06/02)
Launched in 2011, the International Society of Sustainability Professionals Hall of Fame seeks to acknowledge individual contributions to the advance of sustainability.
Activist Shareowners Make Their Way to Texas to Confront Chevron (05/31)
Simon Billenness of the Unitarian Universalist Association talks with SocialFunds.com about Chevron's ongoing legal quagmire in Ecuador and his efforts to have the oil and gas company appoint an independent Chair.
Oil Change International Exposes Growing Crude by Rail (05/30)
A new report estimates that an average of 135 trains with 100 cars apiece are moving crude oil via the rail system of North America, and at any given time nine million barrels are being transported by rail.
No Surprise: Climate Change the Biggest Issue for Sustainable Investors (05/29)
A survey of eleven sustainable investors by Monitor Global Outlook reveals that while more environmental and social shareowner resolutions have been filed in 2014 than ever before, the number of withdrawals has set a record too.
One Blog and Two News Briefs (05/28)
The author reflects upon personal responses to climate change, Trillium Asset Management withdraws resolution at Lowe's, and Sustainalytics research is now on Bloomberg.
Record Support for Stranded Assets Resolution at Anadarko Petroleum (05/27)
Resolution filed by As You Sow requesting that oil and gas company report on risk of stranded assets gains support of 30% of shareowners, the highest percentage for such a resolution thus far.
Uncivilization: an Artistic Manifesto for an Age of Ecocide (05/24)
The Dark Mountain Project contends that the human race has already destroyed the possibility of its survival and advocates for cultural responses that reflect reality. First of a two-part series.
Investment Professionals Taking Stranded Assets Seriously (05/23)
In advance of the 25th annual SRI Conference on Sustainable, Responsible, Impact Investing, First Affirmative Financial Network surveys sustainable investment professionals and finds that a majority believes now is the time to assess investments in fossil fuel companies.
US House Passes Human Trafficking Bills (05/22)
Strong bipartisan support for a package of bills that encourage states to provide social services to victims of forced prostitution and impose additional penalties for those engaged in human trafficking.
EIRIS Launches Investment Watch for Burma (05/21)
After President Obama issues an Executive Order continuing the national emergency in Burma, the EIRIS Conflict Risk Network establishes an Investment Watch for Burma to help investors determine the reporting transparency of companies doing business there.
Shell Joins Exxon in Denying Assets are Stranded (05/20)
A long-winded response by the oil company to shareowner concerns boils down to the assertion that it plans to burn all the reserves on its books regardless of the impact on climate change.
Film Review: The Wisdom to Survive (05/19)
Filmmakers John Ankele and Anne Macksoud document the destruction of nature from the developed nations' addiction to fossil fuels, but argue that there is still time to remake civilization in a just and sustainable way. Second of a two-part series.
Is it Time to Consider Planetary Hospice? (05/17)
Environmental activist Zhiwa Woodbury concludes that climate change will lead to the extinction of life on our planet, and recommends hospice for the entire human race based on the stages of grief of Kubler-Ross. First of a two-part series.
Colgate-Palmolive Commits to Emissions Reductions (05/16)
Shareowner engagement by Walden Asset Management leads to agreement by the company to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in line with standards recommended by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
Shareowners Want Dunkin' Brands to Report on Nanomaterials (05/15)
A resolution from As You Sow, requesting that the company report on use of nanomaterials in its doughnuts, is supported by 23% of shareowners.
Kidnapping of Nigerian Girls Reminder of Persistence of Slavery (05/14)
Members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility call the kidnapping a tragic reminder of the prevalence of human trafficking.
Sustainable Investment Increasing in Austria, Germany, and Switzerland (05/13)
Forum Nachhaltige Geldanlagen, a Eurosif member and the sustainable investment industry association for the three countries, reports that overall market now exceeds $184 billion.
Carbon Tracker Publishes First in Series on Stranded Assets (05/09)
The first of three reports analyzing the investment risks associated with stranded fossil fuel assets coincides with Stanford University's divestment of coal stocks from its $19 billion endowment.
Opportunity Finance Network Reports on Starbucks Partnership (05/07)
The national network of community development financial institutions joined with Starbucks in 2011 to form Create Jobs For USA, an initiative to fund sustainable jobs in underserved communities.
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.
Public Interest Groups Launch Campaign Targeting Non-Recyclable Packaging (05/05)
The Make It, Take It Campaign calls on Kraft Foods to take responsibility for its packaging waste and package Capri Sun and other products in reusable, recyclable, or compostable packaging.
Quality of Corporate Engagement Improved Since Dodd-Frank (05/03)
A new report from the Investor Responsibility Research Center Institute and Institutional Shareholder Services concludes that both investors and companies are more satisfied with engagement since say on pay rules were issued.
Corporations Lagging in Sustainability Efforts (05/02)
In a follow-up to their 2012 report on corporate sustainability, Ceres and Sustainalytics reiterate that major US corporations are failing to keep pace with urgent environmental and social challenges.
Sister Patricia Daly Honored for Shareowner Advocacy (05/01)
The Executive Director of the Tri-State Coalition for Responsible Investment and longtime member of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility receives the Joan Bavaria award from Ceres for advocacy on behalf of environmental justice.
Supreme Court Upholds EPA Ruling on Coal Pollution (04/30)
The 6-2 decision upholds the Agency's authority to regulate pollution from coal-fired power plants, and is the second court decision in two weeks that supports environmental regulations.
NRDC Teams with Investment Firms to Offer Fossil Fossil Fuel Free Equity Index (04/29)
The Natural Resources Defense Council joins BlackRock and FTSE Group to launch a equity global index series that excludes companies engaged in exploration, ownership, or extraction of carbon-based fossil fuel reserves.
Investors Mark Anniversary of Rana Plaza Tragedy (04/25)
A coalition of institutional investors organized by the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility issue a statement calling on apparel brands and retailers to ensure that the human rights of workers in supply chains are being honored.
Google Facing Several Resolutions on Corporate Governance (04/22)
The tech giant's 2014 proxy statement reads like a compendium of corporate governance issues. Second of a two-part series.
Resolution Calls for Transparency in Lobbying Expenditures by Google (04/21)
Filed by Walden Asset Management and other sustainable investment organizations, the resolution documents a 250% increase in lobbying expenditures by Google in the last five years. Part one of a two-part series.
ICCR Writes to Bank of America on Financing Fossil Fuels (04/19)
A letter signed by 50 institutional investors accompanies a shareowner resolution filed by an ICCR member, requesting that Bank of America report on its financing of greenhouse gas emissions.
Canadian Investors Issue Climate Change Policy Statement (04/12)
The Responsible Investment Association calls on the federal and provincial governments of Canada to develop policies that will encourage a transition to a low-carbon economy.
Clean Energy Bond Act Introduced in Congress (04/11)
The Clean Energy Victory Bonds Act of 2014 is modeled after the Treasury Bonds issued in the 1940s to support the World War II effort.
Harvard Joins Principles for Responsible Investment (04/10)
Harvard's endowment is the first in the United States to join the global network of sustainable investors; the university also announces it will report its greenhouse gas emissions to the CDP.
Sustainable Investors Mostly Quiet on McCutcheon vs. FEC (04/07)
The most recent evisceration of campaign finance laws may not be the Supreme Court's last, emphasizing the critical need for regulation and redoubled efforts on political spending disclosure.
First Ranking of Corporate Sustainability in Colombia Published (04/05)
The ranking of the 20 most sustainable companies operating in Colombia uses research framework and methodology developed by Sustainalytics.
Investors Call for Sustainability Reporting by Small-Cap Companies (04/04)
A shareowner resolution from Walden Asset Management, part of a sustainable investor initiative, wins significant support at the annual general meeting of CLARCOR.
Dare We Celebrate Exxon Agreeing to Report on Fracking Risks? (04/03)
As You Sow and the New York City Pension Funds withdraw resolution when Exxon agrees to increased transparency days after the oil and gas company issues disappointing report on stranded assets.
Stock Exchanges to Study Sustainability Reporting Standards (04/02)
The World Federation of Exchanges forms a sustainability working group to study environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) disclosure, and a coalition led by Ceres announces an initiative to engage global stock exchanges on the issue.
Disclosures by Fracking Companies Still Poor (04/01)
Research commissioned by the Principles for Responsible Investment reveals that oil and gas companies engaged in hydraulic fracturing fail to adequately disclose risks associated with the practice.
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.
News Briefs for March 26th (03/26)
Trillium Asset Management withdraws shareowner proposal on political spending at Hess, and Calvert Investments wins Lipper Fund Award.
Literature and Climate Change (03/25)
In which this writer turns to a writer of creative literature for inspiration and understanding in considering the climate crisis.
Tullow Oil Expands Disclosure of Payments to Governments (03/24)
The voluntary disclosure of payments on a project level is the first by an oil and gas company, and comes while the American Petroleum Institute seeks to weaken a proposed Securities and Exchange Commission rule on payments to governments.
Investors Protest Corporate Lawsuits Against Shareowners (03/22)
A coalition of investors led by NorthStar Asset Management writes to four companies that have sought to bypass regulatory system by bringing lawsuits against shareowners for resolutions they filed.
ExxonMobil to Report on Stranded Assets (03/21)
A shareowner resolution is withdrawn by As You Sow after Exxon agrees to becomes the first oil and gas company to report on the impacts of unburnable carbon assets on its business model.
News Briefs for March 20th (03/20)
Green Century Capital Management releases an animated fossil fuel free investing video, and Community Capital Management announces the launch of the CCM Alternative Income Fund.
Trillium Withdraws Diversity Proposal at Wabtec (03/19)
The resolution, which called for a policy emphasizing board diversity at the locomotive and train car components manufacturer, is one of a number withdrawn by Trillium this proxy season.
CDFIs Pledge $1 Billion to Support My Brother's Keeper (03/17)
Opportunity Finance Network launches campaign for $1 billion annually in new financing by community development financial institutions, to benefit low-income, low-wealth, and other disadvantaged communities across America.
Massachusetts Court Upholds Corporate Governance Proposal (03/13)
Denied a no-action letter by the SEC on a shareowner resolution calling for an independent chair, EMC turns to the courts instead and fails.
Book Review: Green Investing: More Than Being Socially Responsible, by J. Patrick Costello (03/10)
The author, a Certified Financial Planner, provides both financial justification for the practice of sustainable investment as well as a primer on investing for the typical investor.
Profit or Health in the Trans-Pacific Partnership? (03/07)
Members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility warn US trade negotiator against expanding tobacco sales and increasing intellectual property rights for medicine.
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.
More than 120 Companies Adopt Political Disclosure (02/28)
The Center for Political Accountability announces that 122 companies have adopted political transparency and accountability as a result of agreements with the organization and its investor partners.
Investors Warned Again of Risks in Arctic Drilling (02/26)
A coalition of nonprofit organizations releases a report for institutional investors detailing the considerable financial, environmental, and social risks associated with Shell's plans to drill for oil in the waters of the US Arctic.
US SIF Publishes Political Spending Guide for Investors (02/24)
Confronting Corporate Money in Politics focuses on using the proxy ballot to advocate for transparency in corporate political spending and lobbying expenditures.
JPMorgan Agrees to Report on Governance and Risk Management (02/22)
After engagement with the bank, members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility withdraw resolutions addressing risk mitigation efforts and separating the positions of Board Chair and CEO.
Shareowners Continue Efforts to Limit Corporate Political Spending (02/21)
Sixty institutional investors file 48 shareowner resolutions calling on corporations to report on federal and state lobbying expenditures, including payments to trade associations.
Kellogg's Commits to Deforestation-Free Palm Oil (02/20)
Green Century Capital Management withdraws shareowner resolution after the food processing company agrees to source only deforestation-free palm oil by next year.
Divest or Engage Meets the Capital Markets (02/19)
Investors aligned with Ceres with Ceres file ten resolutions addressing stranded fossil fuel assets, and Green Century Capital Management announces its Equity Fund will become fossil free.
ICCR Publishes 2014 Proxy Resolutions and Voting Guide (02/15)
The number of shareowner resolutions addressing environmental health filed by members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility in 2014 increases sharply over 2013, reflecting the urgency of action on climate change.
SEC Action on Corporate Climate Disclosure Inadequate (02/13)
Four years after the Commission issued interpretive guidance on climate change disclosure, the quality of corporate reporting remains low, according to a report from Ceres.
Hershey Exceeds Target for Sourcing Sustainable Cocoa (02/07)
Shareowner engagement by members of the Interfaith Center for Corporate Responsibility helps the Hershey Company exceed its commitment to ensuring that 10% of its cocoa supply would be certified by 2013.
Investors Renew Efforts to Improve Fracking Accountability (02/06)
Ceres publishes a report on hydraulic fracturing in water-stressed regions, and five shareowner resolutions filed this year address water and other risks associated with fracking.
Investors Push Emerson Electric on Sustainability Reporting and Relationship with ALEC (02/04)
For the fifth consecutive year, Walden Asset Management requests that company report on sustainability while two more shareowner resolutions request transparency on political spending and lobbying.
Environmentalists Wait for Obama Decision on Keystone Pipeline (02/01)
Following a State of the Union Address in which natural gas exploration was cited as a response to climate change, the State Department publishes its assessment of the controversial Keystone XL Pipeline.
Climate Change Takes the Stage at Davos (01/30)
A high-profile panel convenes at the annual World Economic Forum meeting to discuss the negotiation of an international climate change treaty and how to end extreme poverty.
Sustainable Investment Helps Support Missions of Foundations (01/27)
Finding that relatively few foundations manage their assets according to sustainable investment strategies, the US SIF Foundation publishes a guide to help them do so.
ICCR Members Challenge Banks on Ethics and Emissions (01/25)
A perusal of shareowner resolutions filed by members thus far reveals requests that banks report on emissions in their lending portfolios and on how to ensure an end to unethical business activities.
No More Gestation Crates, Tyson Foods Tells Farmers (01/24)
Green Century Capital Management and co-filers withdraw shareowner resolution after world's largest meat processor asks contract farmers to improve housing standards for pigs.
How to Fund Clean Energy Investment (01/23)
A report released by Ceres at the recent Investor Summit on Climate Risk suggests that the responsibility for scaling up clean energy finance to the necessary level is shared by institutional investors, banks, and policymakers. Third in a three-part series.
Climate Summit Press Conference Focuses on Policy and Fiduciary Duty (01/21)
Prominent representatives of government, business, and institutional investment meet with journalists to discuss strategies for increasing climate finance. Second of a three-part series.
Banks Announce Support for Green Bond Principles (01/14)
Thirteen investment banks indicate their support for a measure designed to ensure transparency, disclosure, and integrity in the development of a more robust green bond market.
Goldman Sachs Exits Coal Terminal Investment (01/13)
BankTrack and the Rainforest Action Network applaud the investment bank's decision to withdraw from funding a proposed coal export terminal at Cherry Point, Washington.
Genocide-Free Proposal to Stay On Proxy Ballot at Franklin Templeton (01/11)
After the SEC rules against Franklin Templeton's request to have the resolution omitted, Investors Against Genocide will return to the mutual fund family's next annual meeting and renew call for a genocide-free investment policy.
Evaluate Public Policies on Climate, Investors Tell Energy Companies (01/09)
Building on its efforts to pressure corporations to report on greenhouse gas emissions strategies, the Raising the Bar investor initiative requests that energy companies review lobbying policies relating to climate legislation.
Top Sustainable Investment Stories for 2013 Part 3 (01/08)
Divest or engage? Sustainable investors have wrestled with arguments of divestment versus engagement, and many have concluded that engagement provides them with the better opportunity to pressure fossil fuel companies to change their behaviors. Meanwhile, sustainable investment firms such as Green Century Capital Management and Trillium Asset Management have been offering fossil free investment opportunities for years.
Top Sustainable Investment Stories for 2013 Part 2 (01/07)
Sustainable shareowners request that fossil fuel companies report on financial impacts of having to leave in ground a majority of reserves on their books if climate change is to be addressed.
Top Sustainable Investment Stories for 2013 Part 1 (12/31)
As the daily mean concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere surpasses 400 parts per million for the first time in three million years, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change emphasizes tha human activity is responsible for climate change.
Using Science to Set Emissions Targets (12/27)
Climate Counts and the Center for Sustainable Organizations rank 100 companies within the context of climate science and find that nearly half are rated as sustainable.
Improved Corporate Communication Key to Long Term Investment (12/23)
Based on consultations with investors and companies, a new paper finds little support for the concept of loyalty-driven securities, but investors agree on the importance of long-term investment horizons.
NGOs Condemn Chevron for Assaults on Free Speech (12/20)
Following the most recent of Chevron's legal maneuvers to avoid responsibility for environmental damage in Ecuador, a group of nongovernmental organizations publish an open letter condemning its tactics.
Volcker Rule Is Finalized (12/14)
After delays that gave rise to fears of gaming by banking industry lobbyists and led to a lawsuit by Occupy SEC, federal regulators finally issue final rules implementing the Volcker Rule.
More Environmental Risks for Fracking Operations (12/13)
A report by the Environmental Integrity Project warns that construction or expansion of more than 90 natural gas power plants could increase greenhouse gas emissions by 91 million tons.
At-Risk Industries Urged to Address Human Trafficking in Supply Chains (12/11)
The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility announces that members will engage with companies in the food-agricultural and hospitality sectors to ensure that human rights in supply chains are being met.
Nelson Mandela (12/09)
Not only was the late South African leader an icon for international justice and peace; his struggles against apartheid have had a lasting impact on the quest of sustainable investors for social justice in capital markets.
Divest or Engage a Serious Question for More than Investors (12/06)
UK think tank Meteos convenes an investor dialogue on risks to energy holdings and recommends more analysis of the effects of climate change mitigation on stranded fossil fuel assets.
How Walmart Can Pay Employees a Living Wage (12/03)
Just in time for the holiday season, Demos explains that wage increases instead of stock buybacks can provide living wages for Walmart’s employees without resorting to price increases.
Fossil Fuel Subsidies Average $112 per Adult (11/29)
A new report on subsidies by the Overseas Development Institute recommends that they be phased out globally by 2025 in order to encourage investment in renewable energy.
Mutual Fund Support for Political Spending Resolutions Inches Upward (11/27)
The Center for Political Accountability and Fund Votes release their yearly analysis of voting on resolutions addressing disclosure of political spending by corporations.
EIRIS to Create Sustainable Index for Turkish Stock Exchange (11/25)
The agreement with Borsa Istanbul follows the London-based sustainable investment research firm's finding that companies in emerging markets with sustainable stock exchanges outperform their peers.
Investors Call for Improved Disclosures by Operators of Wood-Burning Power Plants (11/22)
A report by the Partnership for Policy Integrity challenges claims of carbon neutrality by three companies with bioenergy operations, and 15 fifteen investors call on the Securities and Exchange Commission to review disclosures by the companies.
US Banks Rank Poorly on Indicators of Concern to Sustainable Investors (11/21)
The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility and Sustainalytics rate seven major US banks on four key performance indicators relating to sustainability and corporate responsibility, finding significant room for improvement.
Sustainable Stock Exchanges can Influence Corporate ESG Performance (11/18)
EIRIS publishes results of interviews with 11 stock exchanges and finds that helping investors engage with companies on sustainability issues is a key motivating factor.
$10 Million Investment to Prevent Coffee Rust (11/13)
A coalition including Green Mountain Coffee helps fund Root Capital's Coffee Farmer Resilience Initiative, which seeks to stabilize supply chains by battling the coffee leaf rust fungus in Central America.
Shareowner Engagement yet to Convince Frackers to Disclose (11/11)
A group of sustainable institutional investors issues a report on the hydraulic fracturing industry that reveals companies are failing to disclose impacts on communities and the environment from their operations.
Banks to Receive Guidance on Reporting Emissions in Lending (11/07)
Only six percent of major financial institutions report on emissions associated with lending and investments, so guidance is being developed to help them do so.
Investors Call on Fossil Fuel Companies to Account for Stranded Assets (11/06)
Seventy institutional investors with more than $3 trillion in assets under management request that 45 companies report on unburnable fossil fuel assets in advance of 2014 proxy season. Third of a three-part series.
Latin American Sustainable Investment Forum Is Launched (11/02)
The Colombian Securities Exchange, Sustainalytics, and Deloitte drive the formation of the regional network which aims to increase collaboration and enhance knowledge relating to sustainable investment.
As Fossil Fuel Divestment Grows, Cleantech Offers Opportunities for Investors (11/01)
As You Sow teams with Kachan & Co. and the Responsible Endowments Coalition to outline opportunities for investors in cleantech. Second of a three-part series.
Fossil Fuel Divestment only the First Step (10/29)
Investors join 350.org to produce a guide on divesting from fossil fuel companies. First of a three-part series.
Resource Addresses Human Trafficking in Corporate Supply Chains (10/23)
The Know the Chain initiative, whose investor partners include the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility and the Responsible Sourcing Network, seeks to document corporate compliance with California's new law governing human trafficking.
Shareowners Call for Independent Chair at Twenty-First Century Fox (10/21)
A resolution co-filed by Christian Brothers Investment Services and the British Columbia Investment Management Corporation is supported by two-thirds of independent shareowners, but the company's dual-class stock structure insulates Rupert Murdoch from a majority vote.
Coalition of Brands and Retailers Refuse to Source Uzbek Cotton (10/15)
The Responsible Sourcing Network announces that recent signatories to the Company Pledge Against Forced Child and Adult Labor in Uzbek Cotton bring to 136 the number of companies refusing to knowingly source cotton harvested by child labor.
Community Capital Management Commits $200 Million to Community Development (10/12)
The fixed income investment advisory firm announces its first Clinton Global Initiative America commitment, and will invest at least $200 million over the next year to help revitalize low-income communities.
Stay out of GMO Fight, Shareowners Tell Food Companies (10/11)
Investors file resolutions with many food and biotech companies, warning them of reputational consequence of donating to defeat a ballot initiative in Washington State calling for labeling of food products containing genetically modified organisms.
Shareowners Question FedEx over Washington Redskins (10/08)
A floor resolution at the company's annual meeting cites global human rights standards in asking for a report on the impact of ending a business relationship with the NFL team over racist nickname.
Engage or Divest? (10/07)
As college students continue their campaign for divestment from fossil fuel companies, Northstar Asset Management debunks estimates of the cost of the investment strategy and questions whether shareowner engagement can be effective.
The State of Shareowner Engagement in Europe (10/04)
Eurosif reports on investor engagement with corporations in Europe and finds that engagement on environmental, social, and corporate governance issues is steadily increasing.
New Edition of Corporate Political Spending Index Published (10/02)
The third annual edition of the CPA-Zicklin Index of Political Accountability and Disclosure documents improvements in disclosure of political spending by corporation.
CDFI Fund Awards over $172 Million to Community Development Financial Institutions (10/01)
191 community development financial institutions will use awards from US Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund to provide lending and investments in low-income and economically distressed communities.
Will Governments Act on the Basis of Scientific Consensus? (09/28)
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change publishes the first section of its Fifth Assessment Report, which asserts with even greater emphasis that climate changed is caused by human activity.
New Stock Indexes Champion Sustainability (09/27)
The United Nations Global Compact creates an index of 100 companies adhering to its principles, and STOXX launches two indexes using key performance indicators developed by Axel Hesse.
As You Sow Engages with Food Companies on Packaging (09/25)
The advocacy group succeeds in convincing McDonald's to end the use of environmentally destructive polystyrene foam cups, but decides to resubmit a shareowner resolution with General Mills after engagement over post-consumer packaging fails to lead to agreement.
Sustainable Investors Applaud SEC Rules on Executive Compensation (09/24)
A proposed amendment to existing rule will require corporations to compare CEO pay with the average compensation of all other employees.
Mutual Fund Challenged over Proxy Voting on ESG Issues (09/23)
Zevin Asset Management files a shareowner resolution at Franklin Resources, requesting that the mutual fund company report on proxy voting policies relating to environmental and social issues.
EPA Proposes Limits for Power Plant Emissions (09/21)
The standards, which will limit emissions by new power plants, are praised by investors and corporations, and assailed by the Senate Minority Leader and the Chamber of Commerce.
South Africa a Global Leader in Sustainable Investment (09/19)
Investment research by SinCo informs a new report on global best practice guidebook on sustainable investment and the incorporation of ESG factors by pension funds.
Three Community Lenders Awarded $8.25 Million (09/18)
Opportunity Finance Network presents the 2013 Wells Fargo NEXT Awards for Opportunity Finance to three community lenders for their pioneering strategies for financial products and services in low-income communities.
Occupy Movement to Rally for a Robin Hood Tax on Financial Transactions (09/16)
On the second anniversary of the movement's birth, protestors will march on Chase Manhattan Bank and call for a financial transaction tax to raise funds for social programs.
CDP Report on Global 500 Emissions Is Published (09/14)
The report finds that the average emissions of the 50 heaviest emitters among the world's largest companies have actually increased since 2009.
Bank of America a Corporate Sustainability Leader? (09/13)
S&P Dow Jones Indices announces that Bank of America will be added to its influential sustainability indexes despite the bank's continuing financial support of the coal industry.
Chevron Drops Damage Claims Against Ecuadorians (09/12)
The oil company also requests that Judge Lewis Kaplan and not a jury decide its RICO lawsuit, and that defendants be barred from introducing evidence of environmental destruction in Ecuador.
Shell Fined $1 Million for Clean Air Act Violations in Arctic (09/10)
The Environmental Protection Agency finds the company violated its Clean Air Act permits in the Arctic after encountering operational challenges with its two drilling rigs.
Corporate ESG Performance in Hong Kong and China Stagnant (09/09)
Asian research provider RepuTex-ESG analyzes the ESG performance of companies on the Hang Seng Corporate Sustainability Index Series and finds it basically unchanged from 2012.
Governments Overestimate Levels of Sustainable Development (09/06)
By failing to account for materials extraction through international trade, developed nations provide a misleading picture of raw materials use.
Global Impact Investing Network Publishes Guide to ESG Metrics for Investors (09/05)
The Impact Reporting and Investment Standards (IRIS) is a set of metrics designed to evaluate both a corporation's financial performance and its environmental, social, and governance impacts.
Bank of America Bankrolls Coal India Despite Poor ESG Performance (09/04)
Bank of America and Goldman Sachs are among the foreign banks selected by the government of India to sell a stake in the world’s largest coal company, despite Bank of America's statements of commitment to sustainability.
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.
Alliance Trust Investments Measures Carbon Footprints of its Funds (08/29)
The UK investment firm’s analysis reveals that three of its sustainable equity funds emit less than half the carbon dioxide of their benchmarks.
Sustainable Investment Firms Comment on Fed Plan to Ease Stimulus (08/28)
The Appleseed Fund expresses some skepticism of the Federal Reserve's optimistic outlook, while Green Century Capital Management highlights the World Bank Green Bonds as part of a diversified portfolio.
Community Investment Practitioners Urged to Diversify Approaches (08/27)
A new report published by US SIF notes barriers to increased community investment but finds that the industry is poised for expansion if practitioners can diversify products and marketing.
Investors More Comfortable Assessing Climate Change Risks than Opportunities (08/23)
In its third annual survey, the Global Investor Coalition on Climate Change reports that assessing climate risk has become commonplace among institutional investors, but government inaction and other barriers continue to hinder a transition to low carbon investment.
German Stock Exchange 100th Business to Join Integrated Reporting Pilot (08/22)
The International Integrated Reporting Council announces that Deutsche Börse Group is the first stock exchange to join its pilot program in integrated reporting.
Record Number of Sustainability Resolutions in 2013 (08/21)
In its overview of the 2013 proxy season, Ceres reports that 40% of all resolutions filed address environmental and social issues, and that 40 of the 110 such resolutions were withdrawn.
Tyson Shareowners Call for Humane Treatment of Animals (08/19)
Green Century Capital Management is co-filer of a resolution requesting that meat processing company report on risks associated with the use of gestation crates for pigs.
Shareowner Support for Environmental and Social Resolutions at a Ten-Year High (08/16)
Jackie Cook of Fund Votes summarizes the 2013 proxy season and notes strong support for shareowner resolutions across the environmental, social, and corporate governance spectrum.
US SIF Offers Guides on Climate Change Investment for Retail and Institutional Investors (08/15)
Warning of the urgent crisis that is climate change, the guides provide basic information on voting proxies, filing shareowner resolutions, and public policy advocacy.
Ceres Publishes Blueprint for Sustainable Investment (08/14)
In The 21st Century Investor, Ceres outlines how investors can help transform the global economy into one in which sustainability is the central concern. Second of two parts.
Another Majority Vote for Political Spending Disclosure (08/13)
A 65% vote by shareowners in favor of increased transparency on lobbying expenditures by Alliant Techsystems follows an even higher vote for a similar proposal at CF Industries.
Investors Renew Call for Genocide-Free Investing at ING (08/12)
More than a year has passed since a majority of shareowners supported a resolution sponsored by Investors Against Genocide, but the financial services firm continues to refuse to implement a genocide-free investment policy.
Ceres, ICCR Offer Guidance for Sustainable Investing (07/02)
The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility provides insights for investors on climate change, and Ceres issues a blueprint for investors seeking to incorporate sustainability into their decision making. First of two parts.
Boston Common Asset Management Receives Business Leader in Human Rights Award (06/29)
The sustainable investment firm is honored by the Political Asylum/Immigration Representation Project for promoting attention to human rights issues in the corporate sector.
Major Cities Adapting to Climate Change (06/28)
A report by the Carbon Disclosure Project and the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group reveals that many of the world’s largest cities have launched energy efficiency and other initiatives to lessen the effects of climate change.
Obama Directs EPA to Use Clean Air Act to Regulate Emissions (06/26)
Acknowledging that Congress is likely to persist in failing to act on climate change, the President decides that executive action is needed to address a growing crisis whose effects are already being felt.
Hundreds of Small Businesses Sign Climate Declaration (06/24)
During the recent Small Business Week in Washington DC, the American Sustainable Business Council and Business for Innovative Climate and Energy Policy announce that 364 small businesses from 47 states have joined the call for lawmakers to act on climate change.
Investor Coalition Holds First Global Forum on Climate Change (06/20)
The Global Investor Coalition on Climate Change, a network of four regional climate change investor groups, holds its first meeting in Hong Kong and launches an action plan to facilitate low-carbon investment.
Gulf Persists Between Corporate Sustainability Claims and Performance (06/07)
Sixty percent of corporate respondents to an oekom research survey suggest that rating agencies and sustainable investors influence strategy.
Revised Equator Principles Fall Short, BankTrack Says (06/05)
The third version of the Equator Principles fails to adequately safeguard community rights while continuing to allow signatory banks to fund high impact sectors such as coal and tar sands.
Coalition of Investors Voices Support for Conflict Minerals Rule (06/03)
Expressing their disagreement with a lawsuit filed by the US Chamber of Commerce and industry trade groups, the group states that improved disclosure and reporting on social risk factors will protect investors.
Investors Square Off with Chevron CEO at Shareowner Meeting (06/01)
Shareowner advocate Simon Billenness cites the company's $19 billion legal quagmire in Ecuador in requesting a lower threshold for calling special meetings while Atossa Soltani of Amazon Watch is ejected from meeting at request of CEO John Watson.
Threatened by Climate Change, Ski Industry Joins Call for Effective Policies (05/30)
More than 100 US ski resorts sign the Climate Declaration of Ceres, calling for a coordinated effort to combat climate change threatening the winter sports industry.
Effective Policy Will Drive Investment in Energy Efficiency (05/28)
A report from Ceres and the Investor Network on Climate Risk calls for policies that will encourage institutional investors to invest in energy efficiency projects.
How Not to Endear Yourself to Shareowners (05/25)
Range Resources attacks Trillium Asset Management for requesting that it report on fugitive methane emissions, and Urban Outfitters seeks to address diversity concerns by appointing the wife of the CEO to the board.
High Profile Proxy Season Reveals the Plumbing (05/24)
A proxy distribution service abruptly reverses policy and refuses shareowner access to preliminary vote totals at JPMorgan Chase, and Institutional Shareholder Services settles charges that an employee sold voting data.
JPMorgan Shareowners Vote on Corporate Governance and Genocide-Free Investing (05/22)
A resolution calling for the separation of the positions of board chair and CEO gains the votes of one-third of the bank's shareowners, while support for a genocide-free investing proposal increases.
Chevron Continues to Misrepresent Ecuador Judgment, Updated Report Says (05/20)
Attorney Graham Erion updates his 2012 report on misrepresentations made by Chevron to investors regarding the $19 billion judgment against it for environmental destruction in Ecuador.
Investors Call on Corporations to Ensure Worker Safety in Bangladesh (05/18)
Two coalitions of investors pressure clothing retailers to join the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh, whose 40 signatories include only two companies headquartered in the US.
First Carbon Bubble Resolution Wins Strong Support at CONSOL Energy (05/16)
Twenty percent of shareowners support an As You Sow request that the company report on the financial risks associated with having to leave most of its coal reserves in the ground.
Shareowners Re-file Governance Resolutions at News Corp (05/15)
Christian Brothers Investment Services and the British Columbia Investment Management Corporation request separation of positions of board chair and CEO, while the Nathan Cummings Foundation calls for elimination of the media company's dual-class share structure.
Emerging Markets to be Focus of Socially Responsible Investing 3.0 (05/14)
A new report argues that evolving climate finance mechanisms will be among the drivers to increase the practice of sustainable investment in emerging market nations.
Three Million Years Later, 400 Parts per Million of CO2 in Atmosphere (05/13)
Daily concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere pass the 400 parts per million threshold, foretelling severe effects from climate change if a long-overdue reversal of the trend does not occur.
Report Touts Inclusive Business as Means for Reducing Poverty in Africa (05/10)
The African Facility for Inclusive Markets calls on diverse stakeholders to help create appropriate conditions for the growth of inclusive business in Africa and bring the benefits of economic growth directly to the poor.
Biggest Corporate Political Spenders Face Resolutions (05/09)
Bank of America, Chevron, ExxonMobil and 3M all face shareowner resolutions requesting that they refrain from using corporate treasuries for political donations.
Resolution Calls on CONSOL Energy to Report on Stranded Assets (05/08)
Up to 80% of known fossil fuel reserves will have to stay in the ground if climate change is to be addressed, and As You Sow requests that the coal producer report on the risks of stranded reserve and infrastructure assets.
Loopholes in Commitments to Human Rights by US Businesses, UN finds (05/06)
While the US Government has committed to the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, the UN Working Group on business and human rights finds that US companies fall short of standards.
US Banks Continue to Finance Coal (05/01)
Despite the coal industry's leading impact on climate change and the bankruptcies of several operators of coal-fired power plants, US banks continue to finance mountaintop removal and the construction of new plants.
Avon Challenged to Remove Toxins from Cosmetics (04/30)
Shareowners will vote this week on a resolution by Green Century Capital Management that follows the introduction in Congress of the Safe Cosmetics and Personal Care Products Act of 2013.
Cisco, Google Share Top Spot on Cool IT Leaderboard (04/29)
The sixth edition of the Greenpeace ranking of companies in the information technology sector focuses on political advocacy for effective climate change legislation.
Price Externalities, Report Tells Companies and Investors (04/26)
A new analysis from Trucost estimates that unpriced externalities cost the global economy at least $7.3 trillion per year, and finds that no companies in high impact sectors would be profitable if they had to account for environmental costs.
Investors Want Baby Formula Free of GMOs (04/25)
As the use of genetically modified organisms in food products becomes increasingly controversial in the US, As You Sow introduces a shareowner resolution requesting that Abbott Laboratories remove GMOs from infant formula.
Investors Call for Meaningful Immigration Reform (04/23)
A coalition of investors associated with the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility call for immigration reform that includes a pathway to legal status and protects the rights of immigrants in US workplaces.
Subsidizing Fossil Fuels Hinders Investment in Renewables (04/22)
A paper from the Overseas Development Institute calls for an end to fossil fuel subsidies in order to help mobilize private investment in climate-compatible development in developing nations.
US SIF Launches Online Course on Sustainable Investment (04/18)
The Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment launches the Center for Sustainable Investment Education and the first online course offering of its kind in the US.
Paper Cited as Support for Austerity Is Wrong, Researchers Find (04/17)
A 2010 academic paper warning of the consequences of high debt was cited by Representative Paul Ryan and others as justification for austerity measures, but a new analysis of the paper's findings reveals that mistakes undermine its conclusions.
Shareowners Call for a Vote in Favor of Good Governance at JPMorgan (04/15)
In a letter to the bank's shareowners, the American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees and its co-filers argue for support for their resolution calling for separation of the positions of Chair and CEO.
Climate Principles Issues Best Practices for Hydraulic Fracturing (04/13)
Guidelines for financiers of hydraulic fracturing published by the European Climate Principles add to calls for greater transparency by companies engaged in the practice.
Businesses Join Call for Climate Legislation (04/11)
Thirty-three companies join Ceres and its BICEP coalition in signing the Climate Declaration and calling on Congress to finally pass strong climate legislation.
Financial Firms Agree to Disclose Diversity Information (04/10)
The New York City Pension Funds have reached agreement with three financial companies that will make public their EEO-1 data on diversity.
EU Mandates Disclosure of Payments to Governments (04/09)
Transparency International says that with the European mandate joining rules enacted by the Securities and Exchange Commission in the US, 90% of companies in the extractives industries will be required to disclose payments to governments.
From Divestment to a Sustainable Investment Strategy (04/08)
The authors of Crossing Thresholds: From Fossil Fuel Divestment to Sustainable Investment argue for the inclusion of environmental and social thresholds in investment decision-making and corporate management.
Bankrolling the Dismantling of the Volcker Rule (04/05)
Despite a Senate report finding that JPMorgan's London Whale losses would have been prohibited by the Volcker Rule, members of a House Committee take bank contributions and vote to advance a bill that would allow taxpayer bailouts of too big to fail banks.
On Divestment and a Portfolio Free of Fossil Fuels (04/05)
The debate over the investment implications of divestment continues, but the Green Century Balanced Fund has a carbon footprint less than half that of the S&P 500 without sacrificing financial returns.
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.
End in Sight for Too Big to Fail? (04/01)
Senators Sherrod Brown and Bernie Sanders each pursue legislative initiatives to end the economic advantages of the nation's largest banks and force them to break up.
Twenty Years on, Corporate Sustainability Still Lacking (03/30)
In its annual rating of the sustainability performance of the world's largest companies, oekom research finds that only one in six demonstrate adequate commitment.
Root Capital Surpasses $500 Million in Lending to Agricultural Businesses (03/28)
Helping to address a need that has been estimated at $450 billion, the agricultural lender anticipates $1 billion in loans over the next five years to small agricultural businesses in developing nations.
Investors Support Launch of Access to Nutrition Index (03/27)
Representing $2.6 trillion in assets under management, 39 investors call for widespread support of the Access to Nutrition Index, which ranks the performance of food and beverage companies in the areas of obesity and undernutrition.
Afloat on Fossil Fuel Money, Senate Votes for Keystone Pipeline (03/26)
Oil Change International reports that the 62 Senators supporting the controversial tar sands pipeline in a non-binding vote have received $31 million in campaign contributions from fossil fuel interests.
After Double-Checking the Definition of Plutonic (03/25)
Encouraged by a morning's reading of recent posts in Peter Kinder's excellent blog The Bell, a writer meditates upon the uncertain finish to the race between sustainability and overconsumption of resources.
CDFI Fund to Focus on Financing of Community Health Centers (03/23)
The Financing Community Health Centers series will provide training and technical assistance to community development financial institutions to help them expand the financing of community health centers.
Bank of America Urged to End Financing of Coal (03/21)
Sustainable investors are among the 50 signatories to a letter delivered to Bank of America, urging it to phase out the financing of coal and shift its lending priorities to renewable energy.
Deployment of Renewables Increases but Market Contracts (03/19)
The annual report on clean energy by Clean Edge emphasizes that despite a challenging year for renewable energy, climate change and resource constraints mean that the fundamental drivers for the industry remain.
Insurers Still Unequipped to Deal with Climate Change (03/18)
In a survey of 184 disclosures by insurance companies, Ceres finds that only 23 have climate change strategies, and few have policies in place to help prepare for the effects of climate change.
Law Professor Anticipates Future of Climate Adaptation Law (03/16)
In an academic paper, J.B. Ruhl of the Vanderbilt University Law School summarizes the piecemeal efforts undertaken thus far to address climate adaptation from a legal standpoint, and outlines legal issues that are likely to emerge.
15 Million Shares Vote for Genocide-Free Investing Proposal at Mutual Fund (03/15)
Investors Against Genocide calls on Franklin Templeton to adopt a policy against investing in companies whose operations contribute to genocide.
Report Says Carbon Bubble Poses Risk to Financial Stability (03/13)
Originally published in 2011, Carbon Tracker's report Unburnable Carbon wins a Farsight Award from UK-based Long Finance for its assessment of the financial implications of fossil fuel reserves.
Pax World Adds TIAA-CREF to ESG Managers Portfolio (03/12)
TIAA-CREF's fixed-income Social Choice Bond Fund, launched in September, will be included in the Moderate and Conservative portfolios of the series of asset allocation funds.
First-Time Shareowner Resolutions Address Stranded Fossil Fuel Assets (03/11)
As You Sow and the Unitarian Universalist Association have filed shareowner resolutions with two large coal companies, requesting that they report on material impact of reserves that must remain in the ground if climate change is to be addressed.
As You Sow Publishes 2013 Proxy Preview (03/09)
Political spending resolutions account for one-third of those filed this year's, while two first-time resolutions request that companies in the fossil fuel industries report on the financial impact of stranded assets.
Calvert Updates Report on Corporate Gender Diversity (03/08)
The updated Examining the Cracks in the Ceiling report finds modest gains in gender diversity among S&P 100 companies but persistent underrepresentation of women in senior management positions.
Proposal Challenges TIAA-CREF on For-Profit Health Insurance (03/07)
Advocacy groups urge the pension fund to divest its holdings in private health insurance companies, arguing that the industry has a well-documented history of unethical behavior and abuses.
What Is the Real Financial Impact of Sustainable Investment? (03/06)
Cary Krosinsky of the Network for Sustainable Financial Markets produces a white paper that argues the actual amount of assets devoted to sustainable investment strategies is considerably lower than reported by the world's largest sustainable investment forums.
Investors Highlight Human Rights in Corporate Engagement (03/05)
A new report builds upon the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights to provide investors with tools for assessing the human rights performance of companies.
Feds Hit with Occupy Lawsuit over Volcker Rule (03/04)
Occupy the SEC files suit against six federal agencies for failing to implement Dodd-Frank regulations governing risky proprietary trading by banks.
Shareowners Call for Gender Diversity on Corporate Boards (03/01)
Institutional members of the Thirty Percent Coalition file shareowner resolutions with 20 companies, requesting that they support diversity by including women and minority candidates on their boards.
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.
Investors Question Payday Lending by Banks (02/27)
The US Consumer Financial Protection Bureau contemplates regulations to protect against consumer debt traps, while ICCR members call on major banks to address their own risky lending products.
Fracking on Proxy Ballots at Chevron and Exxon (02/25)
Described as laggards for their failure to address investor concerns, the oil and gas giants face shareowner resolutions addressing environmental and social risks associated with hydraulic fracturing.
Lawsuit Dropped after Chip Maker Updates Political Spending Policy (02/23)
After the New York State Comptroller filed suit in Delaware, Qualcomm updates its policy on political spending to include disclosure of payments to trade associations and social welfare organizations.
Divestment can be a Fiduciary Duty (02/22)
Adam Kanzer of Domini Social Investments that divestment of holdings in firearms manufacturers is an appropriate response to tragedies such as the killing of children in Newtown.
Shareowners Renew Call for Separation of CEO and Chair at JP Morgan Chase (02/21)
The American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees and a coalition of institutional co-filers will return to the banking giant's annual general meeting this year with a resolution that gained 40% of shareowner support in 2012.
Shareowners Pressure Companies on Use of Renewables (02/20)
Most of the 13 resolutions target energy use in the information technology and real estate industry sectors, requesting improved reporting and commitments to increased renewable energy sourcing.
Senators Boxer and Sanders Propose Climate Change Legislation (02/19)
Among the highlights of the proposed bill are a fee on carbon pollution and increased oversight of hydraulic fracturing.
Natural Capital and Integrated Reporting Among Trends for 2013 (02/18)
With the help of environmental research from Trucost, GreenBiz publishes the sixth annual edition of its State of Green Business Report, assessing major trends as well as the environmental performance of 500 US companies.
SEC Allows Climate Change Proposal at PNC Financial Services (02/15)
The bank had sought to exclude a proposal by Boston Common Asset Management requesting that it report on climate change risks in its lending portfolio.
AFSCME Files 25 Shareowner Resolutions (02/14)
The resolutions filed by the AFSCME Employees Pension Plan address sustainability issues including board diversity, human rights policies, separation of Chair and CEO, and lobbying expenditures.
Ceres Ranks Among World's Top NGOs (02/13)
The annual Global Journal ranking of the world's most effective nongovernmental organizations places the environmental investor network sixth among 450 NGOs from 27 countries.
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.
Statoil Breaks with Trade Association over Lawsuit (02/11)
Calvert Investments commends Statoil for explicitly distancing itself from lawsuit filed by the American Petroleum Institute that contests SEC regulation governing payments to governments.
Climate Change Outpacing Green Investment (02/08)
A report from the World Economic Forum outlines the steps necessary to encourage the unprecedented shift in investment strategies that is necessary for sustainable growth.
ICCR Publishes 2013 Proxy Resolutions and Voting Guide (02/07)
The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility reports that its members have filed 180 shareowner resolutions and engaged in 225 corporate dialogues this proxy season.
Shareowners Press on with Fracking Campaign (02/05)
Nine oil and gas companies face shareowner resolutions this proxy season requesting quantitative reporting of risks associated with hydraulic fracturing and the management of fugitive methane emissions.
RepRisk Names Ten Most Controversial Companies in 2012 (02/04)
This year, the annual list from the Swiss-based environmental and social data provider focuses on poor labor conditions and human rights violations as well as bribery, fraud and money laundering.
Corporations Agree to Disclose Political Spending (02/02)
The Center for Political Accountability announces that engagement has led to six corporations agreeing to adopt political disclosure and accountability, while a shareowner resolution at Visa gains significant support.
Many Industry Sectors Unprepared for Conflict Minerals Rule (02/01)
A report from the Responsible Sourcing Network finds that leading companies in the information and communications industry have undertaken initiatives to ensure that their supply chains are free of conflict minerals, but few other industry sectors have done so.
Portfolios Can Thrive After Fossil Fuel Divestment (01/31)
As students on campuses across the country respond to climate change by calling on universities to divest fossil fuel holdings, an analysis reveals that divestment could add little financial risk to portfolios.
Sustainable Investment Forums Form International Alliance (01/29)
The Global Sustainable Investment Alliance, consisting of seven major sustainable membership organizations, publishes a survey of global trends in sustainable investment.
Corporate Knights Publishes Global 100 List of Leading Sustainable Corporations (01/28)
The Belgian metal recycling company Umicore tops the ninth annual list of sustainable large cap corporations, but the list also includes Enbridge, the Canadian operator of pipelines carrying oil from the controversial tar sands.
Genocide-Free Investing Proposal on Proxy Ballot at Franklin Templeton (01/26)
For the first time in at least 19 years, investors in the mutual fund will vote on a shareowner resolution, calling on the company to adopt policies to avoid investing in companies that contribute to genocide.
Thich Nhat Hanh, Alexis de Tocqueville, and Bernie Sanders on Climate Change (01/25)
The Vermont Senator says he will introduce legislation that includes a price on carbon, but despite President Obama's statement of commitment to climate change a White House spokesperson says the administration has no plans to propose a tax on carbon.
Trillium Engagement Leads to Non-Discrimination Policies at Four Companies (01/24)
While employment discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender remains common, a majority of Fortune 500 companies now include protections in their employment policies.
Emissions from Canadian Oil Sands Worse than Expected (01/21)
Two reports focus on the implications of building the Keystone XL pipeline and the effects on levels of greenhouse gas emissions from petroleum coke, a byproduct of the bitumen refining process.
Cuomo Proposes $1 Billion Green Bank for New York (01/19)
The bank will leverage public funds with private sector investment to hasten the transition to a clean economy and environment in New York State.
Briefs Supporting SEC Filed in Lawsuit Challenging Transparency Rules for Extractives (01/18)
Oxfam America and members of Congress argue that a rule mandating disclosure of payments to governments will contribute to stability and help investors make informed decisions.
Sustainable Investment Assets Continue Growth in Canada (01/17)
The biennial report by the Social Investment Organization of Canada reveals that sustainable assets under management now represent 20% of the total.
Ceres Awarded with Zayed Future Energy Prize (01/16)
The investor network wins the $1.5 million prize in the nongovernmental organization category for its work on behalf of addressing climate change.
ICCR Challenges Companies on Climate Change (01/15)
Members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility have filed 28 shareowner resolutions thus far that address climate change related issues such as climate risk and sustainability reporting.
Draft Report Paints Grim Picture of Climate Change Effects (01/14)
The 1,200-page Third National Climate Assessment warns that some effects of climate change are already underway, and insufficient response ensures that the effects will grow worse in coming years.
Shareowner Resolution Challenges Chevron for Attacking Investors (01/12)
The Needmor Fund and Zevin Asset Management file a shareowner resolution requesting that Chevron explain the rationale behind issuing subpoenas to force investors to share confidential communications.
European Sustainable Funds Hold Own in 2012 (01/11)
The twelfth annual study of Green Social and Ethical Funds in Europe by Vigeo Italia notes that consolidation of the industry has continued for a third year.
Shareowner Urges End to Natural Gas Flaring (01/10)
Mercy Investment Services files a shareowner resolution with Continental Resources, requesting that the oil company reduce or eliminate the environmentally destructive practice of natural gas flaring in its operations.
Dangerous Mishaps Plague Shell's Arctic Exploration (01/09)
The Department of the Interior launches an expedited review of Shell's drilling program after a drill rig runs aground in the Gulf of Alaska.
Feds Hand Foreclosure Relief over to Banks (01/08)
The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Reserve Board reach an agreement with ten mortgage servicers that will end the Independent Foreclosure Review and instead provide $3.3 billion in direct payments to eligible borrowers.
Top Sustainable Investment Stories of 2012, Part 5 (01/05)
In a cautionary tale of poor corporate governance, the year for Chevron began with a court in Ecuador upholding the $18 billion judgment against it for environmental damage, and ended with the company's lawyers serving subpoenas on its own shareowners.
Top Sustainable Investment Stories of 2012, Part 4 (01/04)
Will the re-election of Barack Obama help further the sustainability agenda? Despite legislative inaction by Congress, regulatory agencies issued rules addressing climate change and corporate governance in 2012.
Top Sustainable Investment Stories of 2012, Part 3 (01/02)
For some institutional investors, shareowner tactics evolve from resolutions to engagement, and proposals addressing hydraulic fracturing focus concerns on community impacts.
Non-Violent Protest or Terrorist Threat? (12/31)
FBI documents obtained by the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund reveal that coordination between the Bureau, the Department of Homeland Security, and the financial sector began even before the first demonstrations by the Occupy movement.
Top Sustainable Investment Stories of 2012, Part 2 (12/28)
As growing numbers of corporate governance advocates call on the Securities and Exchange Commission to regulate disclosure of corporate political spending, Walden Asset Management leads a shareowner campaign for disclosure of lobbying expenditures; and Wal-Mart faces investor criticism following allegations of bribery in Mexico.
Top Sustainable Investment Stories of 2012, Part 1 (12/26)
Assets allocated to sustainable investment continue to rise, with increasing amounts focusing on positive screening strategies; however, mainstream mutual funds continue to lag in supporting shareowner resolutions addressing climate change and corporate political spending.
Newtown Tragedy Galvanizes Debate on Corporate Responsibility (12/21)
The UN-endorsed Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights recommends that companies address adverse impacts with which they are involved, and Robert Zevin of Zevin Asset Management reminds investors of their historic role in effecting social change.
Shareowners Address Smoking in Films (12/20)
Despite recent findings by the US Surgeon General that exposure to on-screen smoking causes children to smoke, depictions of tobacco use in youth-rated films continue to increase, prompting calls from investors for an R rating for films that depict smoking.
Businesses Unprepared for Resource Scarcity (12/19)
Carbon Trust surveys the CEOs of corporations in five countries and finds that most have not set targets for reducing their use of natural resources, with nearly half stating that to do so would cost too much.
Corporate Laggards: Your Competitors are now Reporting (12/18)
A report from the Governance & Accountability Institute finds that more than half of S&P 500 companies now produce sustainability reports, and most that do use the Global Reporting Initiative framework.
Largest Companies Setting Emissions Reduction Targets (12/17)
A new report finds that most companies in the Fortune 100 and Global 100 now have greenhouse gas reduction goals, and more are committing to renewable energy use.
Chevron Hits Sustainable Investors with Subpoenas over Ecuador (12/15)
In its latest effort to avoid a $19 judgment for environmental damage in Ecuador, Chevron and Gibson, Dunn, & Crutcher, its law firm, have issued subpoenas to Trillium Asset Management and shareowner advocate Simon Billenness.
EPA Finalizes Standards for Soot Pollution (12/14)
The emissions standards for fine particle pollution, which could prevent up to 40,000 premature deaths by 2030, receives the usual objection of being anti-business from the US Chamber of Commerce.
Major Stock Market Indexes can Elevate ESG Risk for Investors (12/13)
A study by GMI Ratings analyzes the environmental, social, and corporate governance performance of major stock market indexes, and finds that most perform poorly against the research firm's normative distribution.
EU Nations Preparing a Financial Transaction Tax (12/12)
A similar measure before the US Senate appears to be going nowhere, despite the fact that such a tax would discourage high frequency trading and encourage a long-term approach to investing.
Mutual Funds Slow to Engage on Political Spending (12/11)
Despite growing attention to the risks for corporations, support by mutual funds for resolutions addressing political spending decreased in 2012.
FairPensions Calls on UK Ethical Funds to Adopt Positive Screening and Increase Corporate Engagement (12/10)
A survey of nineteen UK-based ethical funds finds that most continue to rely on negative screening of sin stocks, and few have committed to shareowner engagement with corporations.
Plan for Regulating Emissions from Existing Power Plants Proposed (12/08)
The Natural Resources Defense Council states in an issues brief that state-specific standards from the Environmental Protection Agency could lead to a steep drop in emissions and significant cost savings.
US Winter Tourism Endangered by Climate Change (12/07)
A report prepared for the Natural Resources Defense Council and Protect Our Winters warns that the winter tourism industry could disappear in regions of the US if greenhouse gas emissions continue to increase.
Institutional Investors Unprepared for Climate Change Impacts in South Africa (12/06)
A report from WWF South Africa and SinCo outlines impacts that are expected to be worse in South Africa than elsewhere, and warns that the portfolios of institutional investors are failing to account for climate change and the impacts of an upcoming carbon tax.
Prospects Dim for Least Developed Nations at Climate Change Conference (12/05)
Despite contributing little to climate change, the populations of the world's poorest countries face imminent loss and damage from its effects while developed economies plead poverty in delaying help.
Climate Financing Improves, but Falls Short of What is Needed (12/03)
The Climate Policy Initiative identifies $364 billion in financing the transition to a low-carbon economy, but the amount falls far short of what is needed to keep global temperature increases below two degrees Celsius.
Growing Pressure on SEC to Regulate Corporate Political Spending (11/30)
After a petition calling for rules mandating disclosure attracts unprecedented support, officials at the Securities and Exchange Commission acknowledge they are considering the issue.
Pharmaceutical Firms are Improving Access of World's Poor to Medicine (11/29)
The 2012 Access to Medicine Index finds that the pharmaceutical industry has improved its performance in delivering products to developing nations, but needs to improve lobbying transparency and oversight of clinical trials.
CEOs Want a Deficit Reduction Plan that Benefits Them (11/28)
Eighty corporate CEOs join the Fix the Debt campaign, which calls for increased tax breaks for corporations while limiting social programs that help the poor and middle class.
SEC Chairman Schapiro to Step Down (11/27)
As Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission since early 2009, Mary Schapiro dealt with the aftermath of the financial crisis and the implementation of new regulations mandated by Dodd-Frank.
US SIF Publishes Biennial Sustainable Investment Trends Report (11/24)
The 2012 Trends Report notes a total of $3.74 trillion in assets allocated to sustainable investment, a 22% increase over a two-year period.
Community Capital Management Invests over $4 Million on Behalf of Sustainable ETF (11/21)
The Florida-based fixed income investment manager, one of the portfolio managers for the AdvisorShares Global Echo exchange-traded fund, invests in projects that promote job creation and provide housing for low- and moderate-income residents.
Investor Networks Urge Governments to Face Climate Change (11/20)
With Hurricane Sandy behind us, and another international climate change conference coming up in Qatar, seven of the world's largest investor networks form the Global Investor Coalition on Climate Change and call for an investment-friendly approach to climate change.
Stakeholder Group Speaks Out on Challenge to Conflict Mineral Legislation (11/19)
The multi-stakeholder group, comprised of corporations, sustainable investors, and nongovernmental organizations, pledges to work to eliminate human rights abuses from the conflict minerals trade in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Dole Hit with Lawsuit Alleging Environmental Destruction (11/17)
The Seattle-based law firm Hagens Berman files a lawsuit against Dole for knowingly purchasing bananas from growers whose operations have destroyed wetlands and poisoned water sources with pesticides in Guatemala.
Assets of PRI Signatories Exceed $32 Trillion (11/15)
With 254 new signatories to the Principles for Responsible Investment, the number now exceeds 1,100, even as 61 former signatories are delisted.
2012 ESG Leaders Award Winners announced by TBLI Group (11/14)
SJF Ventures, oekom research, and Hazel Henderson are among the recipients of awards for achievements in sustainable investment by institutional capital owners.
Quality Standard for ESG Research Launched (11/13)
The Association for Responsible Investment Services re-launches the Responsible Investment Research Standard as ARISTA to increase awareness of the standard and to meet a growing demand for comparability among sustainable investment research firms.
College Endowments Urged to Divest Fossil Fuel Holdings (11/12)
The Do the Math campaign from 350.org urges colleges and universities to restructure their endowments and divest their holdings in fossil fuel industries to make an impact on climate change.
SEC Refuses to Delay Extractives Transparency Rule (11/10)
The Commission tells industry trade association that rule governing disclosure of payments to governments will be implemented as scheduled, despite pending lawsuit challenging its validity.
Climate Change Action in Obama's Second Term? (11/09)
After an election campaign during which climate change was barely mentioned, sustainable investors and other advocates hold out hope for effective action in the next four years.
Calvert Launches Emerging Markets Fund (11/07)
The Calvert Emerging Markets Equity Fund uses the firm's environmental, social, and corporate governance criteria in determining the components of a portfolio investing in the fastest-growing segment of the global economy.
A Different Take on CSR Disclosure and Political Spending (11/06)
A report from two University of California professors determines that political contributions by corporate managers, when viewed through the lens of corporate social responsibility disclosures, can lead to excess stock returns, especially in states that vote Democratic.
For Sustainable Investors, Obama or Romney? (11/05)
The candidates differ markedly on climate change, financial reform, and health care, issues on which sustainable investors have engaged with corporations for many years.
Senate Republicans Quash Findings on Wealth Inequality (11/03)
After the Congressional Research Service issues a report finding no correlation between economic growth and lower tax rates for the wealthiest, Senate Republicans force its withdrawal to protect the party orthodoxy on taxes.
Romney Charged with Ethics Violation for Failing to Disclose Hedge Fund Investment (11/02)
The Office of Government Ethics receives a complaint that by not revealing profits his family received from the Obama administration's auto industry bailout, Romney has failed to disclose a potential conflict of interest.
US Banks Persist in Financing Climate Change (11/01)
A report from BankTrack and the Rainforest Action Network urges financial institutions to measure and report on financed emissions, and recommends that they support expanded disclosure requirements being developed by the Greenhouse Gas Protocol.
Initiative Will Help Quantify Corporate Reporting on Sustainability Issues (10/31)
The Sustainability Accounting Standards Board will develop industry-specific key performance indicators for inclusion by companies in their annual financial reporting to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
With Expiration Looming, Groups Call for Extension of Production Tax Credit (10/30)
The Investor Network on Climate Risk is the latest to write to Congressional leaders, urging them to support extending a tax credit that has helped wind energy become one of the nation's fastest growing manufacturing industries.
Food and Agriculture Industry Lags in Assuring Worker Equity (10/29)
A report by Sustainalytics and Tellus Institute describes workers' rights as less of a priority for companies in the sector than consumer health, environmental impact, and animal welfare.
Sanders Chides Corporate CEOs for Calling on Congress to Cut Programs (10/27)
The Vermont Senator says that the statement by 80 CEOs fails to account for the role of financial institutions in causing the recession, and calls instead for a deficit reduction plan in which the wealthiest pay their fair share of taxes.
CDP Water Disclosure Issues 2012 Report on Corporate Water Use (10/26)
For the first time, the initiative publishes a separate report focusing on water management by US companies, as the number of institutional investors requesting corporate disclosures on water increases to 470.
Oil Sands Producers Urged to Adopt Environmental and Social Performance Goals (10/24)
A coalition of 49 investors with $2 trillion in assets call on newly formed association of producers to set specific goals for improving environmental and social performance.
As You Sow Updates Investment Risks Associated with Coal (10/23)
Investors are warned that as the use of coal as a source of power output in the US declines and construction costs increase, the financial risks of investing in coal-dependent electric utilities are significant.
2012 Newsweek Green Rankings Published (10/22)
With research provided by Sustainalytics and Trucost, this year's Green Rankings note a 20% improvement in companies disclosing environmental information.
Independent Shareowners Want Murdoch out as Chairman of News Corp (10/20)
Resolutions calling for separation of Chairperson and CEO, and end to dual-class stock structure, gain support of two-thirds of independent shareowners at media company's annual meeting.
Court in Ecuador Approves Seizure of Chevron Assets (10/19)
Chevron says it will appeal decision clearing the way for seizure of $200 million of assets in Ecuador as payment toward a $19 billion judgment for environmental damage in the country.
Founder of New Hampshire Community Loan Fund Wins Responsible Finance Award (10/18)
Juliana Eades, President and founding Executive Director of the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund, receives the fifth annual Ned Gramlich Award for Responsible Finance from Opportunity Finance Network.
Investors in UK Celebrate National Ethical Investment Week (10/17)
A survey conducted for the occasion reveals that almost half of adults with investments want large pension plans to sign onto the UK Stewardship Code, and research from EIRIS finds $18 billion invested in green and ethical retail funds.
Project Promoting ESG Disclosure in Emerging Markets Issues Final Report (10/16)
The Emerging Markets Disclosure Project notes that considerable improvements in ESG reporting have been driven by regulatory regimes such as sustainable stock exchanges, but calls for reliance upon standardized reporting to increase attractiveness of emerging markets for investors.
ICCR Ally Succeeds in Bank of America Engagement (10/15)
Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement persuades Bank of America to help homeowners in Virginia county hit hard by mortgage crisis.
Resources Insufficient to Protect World's Poorest from Climate Change (10/13)
The Climate Vulnerability Monitor warns that 100 million lives could be lost by 2030 if climate change and carbon-intensive energy practices are not addressed.
BankTrack not Satisfied with new Draft of Equator Principles (10/12)
While acknowledging that the new draft is an improvement, the Netherlands-based NGO finds insufficient commitments by signatory banks to transparency, human rights, and climate change mitigation.
Assets Committed to Emerging Markets on the Increase (10/11)
A new survey by EIRIS suggests that while sustainable stock exchanges increase investor confidence in emerging markets investment, poor corporate attention to environmental, social, and corporate governance issues remains a barrier.
$18 Billion Judgment Against Chevron Stands (10/10)
The US Supreme Court declines to hear Chevron's arguments for overturning the largest environmental judgment in history, leaving the company vulnerable to charges of securities law violations.
Three Community Development Financial Institutions Receive 2012 NEXT Awards (10/09)
Primary Care Development Corporation will receive $4.25 million to expand beyond New York State, while Clearinghouse CDFI and the Corporation for Supportive Housing each receive awards of $2 million.
Investors Report on Campaign to Address Human Trafficking at London Olympics (10/08)
A coalition of investors led by Christian Brothers Investment Services report that all but one of 33 corporations responded to its letter on the issue, and a number have taken concrete steps to address human trafficking.
Growth of Sustainable Investment in Europe Continues to Outpace the Overall Market (10/06)
In its fifth biennial survey of sustainable investment in Europe, Eurosif identifies norms-based screening as the fastest-growing strategy, and urges improved communications to encourage greater uptake of sustainable investment by retail investors.
2012 Moskowitz Prize Awarded to Paper Linking Improved Corporate Performance with Successful Shareowner Engagement (10/05)
Entitled Active Ownership, this year's winning paper analyzed shareowner engagements on environmental, social, and corporate governance issues, and found that successful engagement led to abnormal positive returns of 4.4%.
Task Force Files Lawsuit against JPMorgan Chase (10/04)
The Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities Working Group, a state-federal task force, announces its first legal action, charging the bank for fraudulent misrepresentations of mortgage-backed securities by Bear Stearns & Co.
Bank of America Settles Shareowner Lawsuit for $2.43 billion (10/03)
The bank's 2008 acquisition of Merrill Lynch $20 billion preceded disclosure of $27.6 billion in losses, and led to lawsuit by pension funds charging the bank with making false or misleading statements.
Chevron Wants Access to Emails of Critics (10/02)
The oil company's latest effort to avoid paying a $19 billion judgment for extensive environmental damage in Ecuador involves trying to gain access to the private email accounts of 101 people who have worked on the case.
GMI Licenses Research for Corporate Governance Indexes (10/01)
The firm's agreement with the Global Index Group, which will create the first indexes focusing on corporate governance performance, is commended by governance advocate James McRitchie as a very important development for investors.
Extractives Commitment to Human Rights Improving (09/27)
But research from Oxfam America indicates that policies supporting Free, Prior, and Informed Consent must include a transition from resource extraction to development partnerships.
Index of Corporate Political Spending Updated (09/26)
The Center for Political Accountability and the Zicklin Center update their Index of Corporate Political Accountability and Disclosure, finding that voluntary disclosure of corporate political spending is becoming a mainstream practice.
Is Self-Made Wealth a Myth? (09/25)
United for a Fair Economy analyzes the Forbes 400 list of wealthiest Americans, finding that 40% inherited considerable wealth, while a quarter earned their wealth through investment.
Shell Says Oil Spills from Corroded Pipes in Nigeria Due to Sabotage (09/24)
Amnesty International and the Center for Environment, Human Rights and Development cite the assessment of experts that the latest in a series of oil spills in the Niger Delta was due to corrosion in poorly-maintained pipes owned by Shell.
Sustainalytics Partners with Chinese Consultancy Firm (09/22)
The research partnership with SynTao will provide clients of the Netherlands-based firm with analysis of the ESG performance of Chinese companies.
China Joins with EU to Reduce Emissions (09/21)
The European Union will help China reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by contributing $32.5 million for the development of Emissions Trading Systems.
Insurers Unequipped to Deal with Climate Change (09/20)
A report from Ceres warns that as payouts for extreme weather events increase to record levels, the insurance sector is falling behind other industries in returns on investment.
BICEP Members Call for Extension of Wind Credit (09/19)
Nineteen companies in the Ceres-led Business for Innovative Climate and Energy Policy coalition say that Congressional extension of the tax credit for wind energy will improve competitiveness and create jobs.
Occupy Movement Celebrates First Anniversary (09/18)
Despite efforts to marginalize its accomplishments, the Occupy Movement has succeeded in keeping the issue of wealth inequality in the forefront of the national consciousness.
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.
House Passes No More Solyndras Act (09/15)
Viewed by Democrats as nothing more than election-year grandstanding, the bill stands no chance of passing the Senate.
SAM Updates Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes (09/14)
Microsoft and Hewlett Packard are added to the DJSI World, but no US-based companies are included among the Index's 19 supersector leaders.
CDP Releases Annual Reports on Corporate Carbon Management (09/13)
Responding to more than half of the world's invested capital, large companies increasingly view climate change as a current business concern, but too little is being done at present to avert a climate crisis.
Panel Calls for Rescue of CDM (09/12)
Despite its flaws, the Clean Development Mechanism remains the only international framework for funding renewable energy projects in developing nations, and meaningful emissions reduction targets will help enhance its effectiveness.
Congress Unlikely to Pass 2012 Farm Bill in Time (09/11)
As severe cuts in the food stamp program and assistance to farmers seem more likely, the responsibility for building a sustainable food supply falls to sustainable investors and other key stakeholders.
GMI and Trucost Form Partnership (09/10)
The strategic partnership provides for environmental research by Trucost to be incorporated into GMI's analysis of the corporate governance performance of companies.
Opinions Differ on the Future of Sustainable Investing (09/07)
Industry veterans weigh in on likely developments over the next twenty years, and their opinions range from optimism to concern.
Lawsuit Alleging Human Rights Violations by Shell in Nigeria Reaches SCOTUS (09/06)
In an issues brief, Professor John Ruggie wonders if Shell's efforts to undermine the Alien Tort Statute will undermine its claims of corporate social responsibility.
Muhammad Yunus, Father of Microcredit and Nobel Peace Prize Recipient, to Address SRI Conference (09/05)
The founder of the Grameen Bank will be the keynote speaker at October's SRI Conference on Sustainable, Responsible, Impact Investing, which will also feature author Deepak Chopra and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. Second of a two-part series.
PRI Signatories Prioritize ESG Issues for Engagement (09/04)
A survey of frequent users of the PRI Clearinghouse indicates that executive compensation, climate change, and labor standards in corporate supply chains will be the top areas of engagement for institutional investors during the coming year.
Rebranded, the SRI Conference Heads East (09/03)
SocialFunds.com talks with Steve Schueth of First Affirmative Financial Network about the history of the conference and the decision to locate it at the Mohegan Sun in Connecticut this year. First of a two-part series.
New York City Codifies Climate Change Adaptation (08/31)
The legislation, which will require the city's Climate Change Adaptation Task Force to update its assessment of the effects of climate change every three years, is the first ordinance from a US city to use latest climate science to develop adaptation strategies.
Fuel Efficiency Standards Finalized (08/30)
The new fuel efficiency standards of 54.5 miles per gallon will nearly double the current standards, and could increase profitability while creating hundreds of thousands of new jobs.
CalSTRS Engages with Russell 2000 Companies on Majority Voting Standard (08/29)
The pension fund's engagement with 95 companies during 2012 proxy season results in 86% of them either adopting the standard or making significant progress toward doing so.
Treasury Bonds Issue Will Help Fund Clean Energy Deployment (08/28)
The Clean Energy Victory Bonds Act would both provide for the sale of US Treasury Bonds to help finance clean energy technologies, and extend the federal Production Tax Credit for wind energy.
Labor Conditions Improving at Chinese Supplier to Apple (08/27)
The Fair Labor Association reports that Foxconn Technology Group, Apple's largest supplier, is ahead of schedule in meeting commitments such as higher wages and less mandatory overtime.
Investors Call on EPA to Strengthen PVC Regulations (08/25)
Arguing that proposed regulations do not go far enough to protect the health of communities, the investors request that national emission standards for the PVC industry provide better protection from cancer-causing pollutants.
SEC Issues Rules on Conflict Minerals and Payments to Governments (08/24)
Responses by sustainable investors and other stakeholders to payments to governments in resource-rich countries is generally positive, but concerns are voiced over provisions in the conflict minerals regulation. Second of a two-part series.
DC Appeals Court Strikes Down Another EPA Regulation (08/23)
The Court decides that the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule exceeds the Environmental Protection Agency's statutory authority, but a dissenting opinion argues that the Court has trampled on precedent.
SEC to Vote Today on Disclosure of Conflict Minerals (08/22)
The Enough Project reports that reforms are underway as a result of Dodd-Frank legislation, but warns that further steps must be taken to prevent conflict minerals in the Congo from subsidizing armed conflict. First of a two-part series.
Sustainability Management by Oil Firms Lacking (08/21)
A report from oekom, a German research firm, analyzes the sustainability performance of oil and gas companies, finding that as technological demands increase the management of risk is failing to keep up.
A Strategy for the Commons that Includes Business and Government (08/20)
As national governments persist in pursuing narrow agendas rather than global action on climate change and sustainable development, other key stakeholders are recognizing that they must pressure corporations and governments into dialogue on the issues.
Pension Fund Wants Wal-Mart to Come Clean on Bribery Allegations (08/17)
After receiving documents relating to allegations of bribery by the retail giant's Mexican subsidiary, the Indiana Electrical Workers Pension Trust Fund charges in a lawsuit that nearly half of the pages were blacked out.
Wells Fargo Settles Mortgage-Backed Securities Charges for $6.5 Million (08/16)
The Securities and Exchange Commission charges the bank for selling investments tied to mortgage-backed securities without disclosing the risks to investors.
Investors Urge Extension of Production Tax Credits (08/15)
The tax credits, which help drive billions per year in private investment in the wind energy industry, are set to expire this year, which could lead to the loss of 37,000 domestic jobs.
Mercer to Incorporate ESG in Mainstream Client Reports (08/13)
Citing a growing interest in environmental, social, and corporate governance from institutional investors, the consulting firm will include ESG factors in reports relating to fund manager search and performance.
Goldman Sachs Escapes Criminal Charges (08/12)
Despite evidence of conflicts of interest detailed in last year's report by the Senate's Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, the Justice Department announces that it will not bring a criminal prosecution against the bank.
News Networks Ignore a Major Banking Scandal (08/11)
The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility writes to ABC and NBC, asserting that the networks have failed to cover the LIBOR rate-fixing scandal and its severe impacts on the poor and most vulnerable.
How to Fund a Sustainable Food System (08/09)
RSF Social Finance publishes a report on steps investors can take to help build a just and sustainable food system in the US.
Church of England Sells its Shares in News Corp. (08/07)
A year of engagement following the phone hacking and bribery scandal has failed to produce a commitment by the media giant to improve its corporate governance, and the Church responds to the lack of progress with divestment.
Facebook Publishes Carbon Footprint (08/06)
For the first time, the social networking company has disclosed its greenhouse gas emissions, and announces a goal of using renewable energy sources for 25% of its power.
Proxy Access Still Key to Changing Corporate Behavior (08/03)
SocialFunds.com talks with James McRitchie of CorpGov.net about corporate governance shareowner proposals and the case for improved proxy access for individual investors.
Despite SEC Guidance, Disclosures by Oil and Gas Companies Are Insufficient (08/02)
A report from Ceres finds that ten of the largest companies in the oil and gas sector are failing to provide sufficient disclosures on climate change and deepwater drilling.
Finalists for 2012 Wells Fargo NEXT Awards Announced (08/01)
Three community development financial institutions are named as finalists for $8.25 million award to expand affordable housing, health care, or community facilities in distressed markets.
Companies Challenged over Membership in ALEC and Heartland Institute (07/31)
Walden Asset Management spearheads a letter-writing campaign by shareowners urging corporations tor review their memberships in the controversial organizations.
PRI Publishes Case Studies of Sustainable Investment (07/27)
A report provides examples of sustainable investments by CalPERS and other signatories to the Principles for Responsible Investment, and argues for government policies to help mitigate the risks of such investments.
Greenland Ice Sheet Melt Unprecedented (07/26)
NASA satellite measurements confirm that 97% of Greenland's ice sheet has melted this summer, far more than ever before recorded.
Concerns Voiced over Easing Burma Investment (07/25)
An executive order lifting ban on investment in Burma allows US companies to enter the country's energy sector, raising concerns over lack of transparency and ties to the military.
Institutional Investors: Part of the Problem or Part of the Solution? (07/24)
Authors Ben Heineman and Stephen Davis argue in a working paper that many institutional investors lag behind corporations in transparency, and call for a national database on the behavior of institutions. Second of a two-part series.
What Good Are Shareowners? (07/23)
An analysis published in the current Harvard Business Review argues that the rise of short-termism in the markets, and poor communications between management and shareowners, require engagement by diverse long-term stakeholders. First of a two-part series.
Voting Rights Curtailed by Dual-Class Structure, News Corp. Shareowners Call for Reforms (07/20)
Eighteen investors representing over $1.6 trillion in assets under management write to Rupert Murdoch, urging him to support a shareowner resolution calling for the separation of the positions of Chair and CEO.
College Endowments Lagging in Sustainable Investment (07/19)
Once leaders in sustainable investment and shareowner advocacy, college and university endowments now lag behind many mainstream institutions in the uptake of environmental, social, and corporate governance investment criteria.
Pros and Cons of Australian Carbon Tax (07/18)
Implemented on July 1st, Australia's carbon pricing scheme imposes a price of $23 per ton on carbon emissions. But some clean energy advocates argue that the policy does not go far enough.
Apple Reverses Plan to Dump Green Registry (07/17)
The computer giant reverses its decision to leave the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool registry, calling it a mistake after consumer backlash.
Sustainable Large Caps Outperform MSCI World Index (07/16)
An analysis by oekom research finds that investment in corporations designated by it as Prime Portfolio Large Caps can yield returns more than double that of those listed on the MSCI World benchmark.
NASDAQ to Promote Sustainability Disclosure (07/13)
At Rio+20, the US-based stock exchange joins four counterparts in encouraging corporations to disclose environmental, social, and governance risks and opportunities.
Proxy Season Results Support Mainstreaming of ESG (07/12)
This year's shareowner resolution tracker from Ceres notes that almost half of the environmental and social resolutions coordinated by the organization were withdrawn after successful engagement with companies. First of a two-part series.
Experiment in Proxy Access for Retail Investors to End (07/11)
Citing persistent regulatory obstructions, Moxy Vote announces that it will cease operations on July 31st, ending a service to help individual investors vote their proxy ballots.
Investors Call for a Meaningful Arms Treaty (07/10)
A coalition of 39 institutional signatories to the Principles for Responsible Investment issues a statement arguing that the absence of an Arms Trade Treaty affects investment by negatively impacting both the global economy and companies.
Congressional Friends of GMOs Sneak Rider into Appropriations Bill (07/09)
The rider will require that a permit for planting genetically engineered crops be issued even if a federal court orders that the planting be halted.
Genetic Engineers Debunk GMO Claims (07/07)
A report by Earth Open Source reveals that the claims of product safety and sufficient regulation made by producers of genetically modified organisms are false.
A Guide to Economics for the 99% (07/06)
The Center for Popular Economics publishes Economics for the 99%, a handbook which describes the roots of economic inequality and offers a solidarity economy as an alternative.
Investors Fear Canadian Budget Bill Weakens Environmental Regulations (07/05)
Despite efforts by the Social Investment Organization, which warned that passage of an omnibus budget bill could discourage investment by providing for inadequate environmental regulation, the bill passes in a Senate dominated by conservatives.
Community Investment Options Increase but Barriers Remain (07/04)
A report from US SIF details an increasing number of community investment options, but low awareness, perceptions of low returns and high risk, and increased regulatory scrutiny remain as barriers to a wider uptake of the practice.
Shareowners Await Support from Legislators and Regulators in Addressing Corporate Political Spending (07/03)
As support for resolutions requesting disclosure of corporate political spending increases, efforts to address the issue on a macro level are stirring but are unlikely to affect 2012 elections.
Separating CEO and Chair Provides Financial Benefits (07/02)
A report from GMI Ratings finds that companies with a combined CEO and chair pay far more compensation for the positions, are more likely to pursue aggressive accounting practices, and are twice as likely to receive a failing grade for environmental, social, and corporate governance performance.
Genocide-Free Investing Resolution Wins Majority Vote (06/30)
Investors Against Genocide's request that the ING Emerging Countries Fund refrain from investing in companies that provide funding to governments engaged in genocide is supported by over 59% of shareowners.
SCOTUS Upholds Obamacare (06/29)
Members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility applaud yesterday's Supreme Court decision to uphold the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
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.
ICCR Commends Disney on Advertising by Food and Beverage Companies (06/26)
The media giant announces that food and beverage products advertised on its networks will be required to meet nutritional guidelines that are aligned with federal standards.
Rio+20 Ends without Binding Agreements (06/23)
Sustainable investors who consider regulatory action to be essential are likely to be disappointed by the absence of agreements addressing climate change and corporate reporting.
A Giant Leap Forward, or Unsustainable Business as Usual? (06/22)
The Natural Capital Declaration, launched at Rio+20, aspires to properly value the environment in financial transactions, but at least one nongovernmental organization argues that the pricing of environmental assets is a fatally flawed solution.
Get to Work, the Financial Stability Oversight Council Is Told (06/21)
The newly-formed Systemic Risk Council observes that two years after Dodd-Frank, most of its financial reforms have yet to implemented, and urges the Financial Stability Oversight Council to prioritize the identification of systemically important nonbank financial institutions.
UK Mandates Emissions Reporting for Public Companies (06/20)
Deputy prime minister Nick Clegg is expected to announce at Rio+20 today that all 1,800 companies listed on the London Stock Exchange's Main Market will be required to report on greenhouse gas emissions.
Replacement for GDP Proposed at Rio+20 (06/19)
The Inclusive Wealth Index would provide a definition of wealth that encourages sustainable economic and social development.
Corporate Disclosure of Water Risks Should Include Quantitative Data (06/18)
Ceres follows up on a 2010 study of corporate reporting on water risk with a new report that notes improvements, but says also that quantitative data and supply chain information is lacking.
Business Leaders Call for Sustainable Economic Recovery (06/16)
Members of the American Sustainable Business Council visit the White House for a summit in which they describe a market that accounts for externalities and benefits all participants.
Shareowners Vote on Resolution Asking Target to Refrain from Political Spending (06/15)
Filed in the aftermath of a 2010 consumer boycott over a political donation by the retailer, the resolution wins enough support to reappear on next year's proxy ballot.
Sanders Calls for End of Conflicts of Interest on Federal Reserve Boards (06/14)
After introducing legislation prohibiting bank executives from serving on Federal Reserve boards, Sen. Sanders of Vermont names 18 Fed directors whose firms benefited from the bailout during the financial crisis.
Guidance for Corporate Respect for Children Is Published (06/12)
Children are Everyone's Business, a workbook published by UNICEF, guides companies in the integration of children's rights into core business practices.
Behind the Scenes, Corporations Undermine Science-Based Climate Policy (06/11)
The Union of Concerned Scientists reports that many US-based corporations engage in greenwashing by maintaining a public image of climate consciousness while secretly undermining climate science and policy.
Proxy Voting on Climate Change by Mutual Funds Fails to Account for Materiality (06/09)
An analysis by Ceres and Fund Votes of 2011 proxy voting reveals that the three largest mutual funds failed to vote in favor of a single climate-related resolution.
Fund Seeks to Improve the Lives of East African Farmers (06/08)
The Global Impact Investing Network publishes a case study of the African Agricultural Capital Fund, which invests in environmentally sustainable agriculture projects to benefit the rural poor in sub-Saharan Africa.
Time for Investment in Africa Is Now (06/07)
The second annual Ernst & Young survey of investment in Africa finds a distinct perception gap between the overwhelmingly positive responses of investors already doing business in Africa, and the possibly outmoded views of those who do not.
Advocates for a Fair Economy Call for End to Payday Lending by Banks (06/06)
A coalition including several sustainable investment organizations ask federal regulators to investigate banks offering payday lending, which can trap low-income borrowers into a cycle of debt with interest rates as high as 417%.
Shareowners to Vote on Lobbying by Energy Companies (06/05)
Resolutions submitted by Walden Asset Management at Devon Energy and Chesapeake Energy call for disclosure of corporate lobbying expenditures.
Zevin Asset Management Calls for Net Neutrality at Wireless Firms (06/04)
The Boston-based investment firm writes to AT&T and Verizon, asking them to ensure that net neutrality is maintained and that the wireless providers refrain from imposing discriminatory fee structures.
Investors Urge Corporations to Consider Physical Impacts of Climate Change (06/02)
A new report notes improved corporate reporting on greenhouse gas emissions emerging from SEC guidance, but calls for improved management and disclosure of extreme weather events and other physical risks.
Shareowners Voice Support for Environmental and Governance Resolutions at Chevron (06/01)
A call for the separation of the positions of CEO and Board Chair gains more than 38% of shareowner support, while 27% vote in favor of improved disclosure of risks associated with hydraulic fracturing.
Add Corporate Social Responsibility to Rio+20, Stakeholders Say (05/31)
The Dialogue on a Convention on Corporate Social Responsibility and Accountability proposes a global policy framework requiring companies to embed sustainability into their operations and report on their efforts.
Clean Energy Initiatives on the Increase in Many States (05/30)
The third annual State Clean Energy Index from Clean Edge ranks California first among states in its adoption of such indicators as electricity generation from renewable sources and deployment of hybrid and all-electric vehicles.
Investors Write to Chevron Again (05/29)
Led by the New York State Common Retirement Fund, a coalition of 40 institutional investors with $580 billion in assets under management calls on Chevron to end its legal wrangling over an $18 billion judgment against it for environmental damage in Ecuador.
More Stakeholders Call for Meaningful Action at Rio+20 (05/25)
The International Institute for Environment and Development outlines a three-point plan to ensure that government negotiators account for the needs of local communities through sufficient aid and realistic valuation of natural capital.
Investors Warned to Question Shell's Plans for Arctic (05/24)
Citing the likelihood that control of a spill in ice-covered waters will fail, and outlining Shell's poor track record in the Russian Far East, Greenpeace advises investors to ask hard questions about the risks to the company's financial health.
A Trillion Dollar Call for Best Practices in Fracking Operations (05/23)
Fifty-five institutional investment organizations representing $1 trillion in assets under management call for adoption of best practices by oil and gas companies engaged in hydraulic fracturing.
Concerns Grow over Slow Pace of Sustainable Development (05/22)
The World Business Council for Sustainable Development publishes a report in advance of next month's Rio+20 Conference, warning that a radical adaptation in the use of natural capital is required.
Shareowners Ask SEC to Investigate Chevron (05/21)
Three sustainable investment organizations say that the company's management appears to be covering up the risks associated with an $18 billion legal judgment against it for environmental damage in Ecuador. Second of a two-part series.
Two-thirds of Cairn Energy Shareowners Reject Say-on-Pay Proposal (05/19)
The vote at the UK-based energy exploration company comes after Business Secretary Vince Cable proposes that shareowner votes on executive compensation be binding.
Is Chevron in Violation of Securities Law? (05/18)
New reports on Chevron's liabilities relating to environmental damages in Ecuador assert that while the company's legal options have narrowed significantly, its public filings repeat the same arguments made in 2008. First of a two-part series.
Race Between Sustainability and Over-Consumption Continues (05/16)
The third annual MIT survey of corporate executives suggests that sustainability is increasingly a management agenda item, while a report from WWF finds that global consumption patterns are still unsustainable.
ICCR Responds to Vatican Investigation of US Nuns (05/15)
The all-male Church hierarchy apparently wants less social justice work by women religious in the US, and more outspoken opposition to homosexuality, abortion, and women's ordination.
Water Use in Many Large Economies Is Unsustainable (05/14)
China, India, and the US contain regions of extreme risk due to water scarcity, threatening global commodities prices and even increasing the possibility of social unrest.
Shareowners Renew Call for Improved Governance at JPMorgan Chase (05/11)
After the bank reports $2 billion in losses on risky trading, the American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees calls for the appointment of an independent Chair, stating that the stakes are too high to leave CEO Jamie Dimon unsupervised.
UNDP Reports on Outlook for Sustainable Development in Asia-Pacific (05/10)
Exploring both widespread poverty and the impacts of climate change on the region, the report warns that the private sector and other stakeholders must act in order to galvanize government action.
Political Spending Proposal at CVS Caremark Goes to Vote Tomorrow (05/09)
For the sixth year, shareowners will vote on a proposal from Green Century Capital Management, requesting disclosure of direct and indirect political spending by the company.
Investors Call for Steps to Eliminate Sex Trafficking at London Olympics (05/08)
ICCR members and other investors write to airlines, hotel chains, and corporate sponsors of the Games, and launch website to encourage public involvement in ending human sex trafficking.
Chesapeake Energy Agrees to Separation of Chair and CEO (05/07)
The controversial oil and gas company agrees to a key corporate governance reform after widespread criticism of an arrangement allowing CEO Aubrey McClendon to borrow more than a billion dollars from its treasury.
Shareowner Group Details Occupational Health and Safety Issues for Investors (05/05)
The Shareholder Association for Research and Education issues investor guidance for assessing the health and safety policies and practices of Canadian corporations.
Sustainable Investment by Pension Funds Total Less than One Percent of Assets (05/04)
Despite the necessity of a low-carbon economy and the opportunities for investment in the transition, efforts by governments and institutional investors remain inadequate. Second of a two-part series.
EIRIS Reports on Sustainability Practices of Largest Global Companies (05/03)
Companies in the US and Asia lag behind their peers in Europe, while significant differences persist among corporate approaches to sustainability.
Clock Is Ticking While Corporate Sustainability Lags (05/02)
A report from Ceres and Sustainalytics identifies a small number of US corporations leading sustainability efforts, but more decisive action is required to embed sustainability by 2020. First of a two-part series.
US Banks Receive Failing Grades for Financing Coal (05/01)
While most of the nation's largest banks have publicly stated commitments addressing mountaintop removal coal mining and coal-fired power generation, the financing of such projects continues.
UKSIF Endorses Key Investor Initiatives for Rio+20 (04/30)
The Natural Capital Declaration commits financial institutions to integrating environmental considerations into their products and services, while the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Coalition seeks a convention on corporate reporting.
Corporate Political Spending: Why Do they Do It? (04/28)
With six months to go before election, corporations can still spend freely and in relative secrecy, and do so, despite numerous studies associating political spending with lower returns.
Power of the Proxy Confirmed at Citigroup (04/27)
In the aftermath of the shareowner vote against Citigroup's executive compensation package, Mark Regier of Everence Financial talks with SocialFunds.com about the evolution of say-on-pay.
Retail Investors Invited to Discussion on Fracking (04/26)
Moxy Vote provides a forum for individual investors to vote their proxies, and invites them to weigh in on hydraulic fracturing resolutions at Chevron and Exxon Mobil.
Investors Speak Out on Wal-Mart Bribery Allegations (04/25)
Members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, who have been engaging with the retail giant on social issues for decades, express their dismay over allegations of bribery and subsequent efforts to impede an investigation.
Wal-Mart Gets ESG Rating of F After Bribery Allegations (04/24)
GovernanceMetrics International assigns a failing grade to the retail giant's environmental, social, and corporate governance performance following revelations that information about a bribery scandal in Mexico was covered up.
EPA Finalizes Rules on Emissions from Fracking (04/23)
Drillers of new wells that use hydraulic fracturing to access natural gas resources have until 2015 to employ green completions to capture methane and other chemicals before they are released into the environment.
New Exchange Traded Fund Will Support Sustainability Themes (04/21)
A portion of the assets of AdvisorShares Global Echo ETF will support the Global Echo Foundation, a charitable foundation co-founded by Philippe Cousteau.
Eurosif Outlines ESG Risks to Media Companies (04/20)
The fast-changing media sector faces risks associated with trust, freedom of expression, and diversity, and a report cites examples of best practice in an environment dominated by the News Corporation's phone hacking scandal.
Shareowners Vote Down Citigroup Pay Package (04/18)
Fifty-five percent of Citigroup's shareowners vote against the executive compensation package proposed by management, marking the first time that shareowners have done so at a big bank.
Investors Challenge Goldcorp's Closing Costs for Guatemala Mine (04/17)
Two institutional investors warn that Goldcorp faces litigation risks if its plan for funding the environmental cleanup of its mine in Guatemala is inadequate.
Investors Take on ALEC in Aftermath of Trayvon Martin Killing (04/16)
Tim Smith of Walden Asset Management writes to investors, stating that corporations associated with the American Legislative Exchange Council face reputational risks and should review their funding of the controversial organization.
JPMorgan Chase Faces Investing in Genocide Resolution (04/13)
For the second year, Investors Against Genocide submits shareowner proposal addressing JPMorgan Chase's extensive holdings in PetroChina, a corporate contributor to genocide in Sudan.
Companies Advised to Address Risks in Supply Chains (04/12)
A Procurement Report from Eurosif establishes the business case for addressing environmental and social risks in corporate supply chains, and recommends that investors assess the exposure of companies in their portfolios.
SEC Reconvenes Investor Advisory Committee (04/11)
The Committee, which was formed in 2009 and terminated after passage of the Dodd-Frank bill, again includes representatives of the sustainable investment industry.
Solar Industry Maturing Despite Lack of Subsidies (04/10)
A report from As You Sow details examples of best practice in environmental, social, and corporate governance considerations by solar companies, and provides a benchmark for investors to track sustainable developments in the industry.
Regulatory Path Cleared for Fracking Resolution at Exxon (04/07)
The Securities and Exchange Commission overrules challenge by ExxonMobil to hydraulic fracturing resolution submitted by As You Sow.
Shareowner Advocates Disappointed by Goldman's Choice for Lead Independent Director (04/07)
The American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees withdraws resolution calling for separation of Chair and CEO at Goldman Sachs, then expresses disappointment at the firm's choice for lead independent director.
Listen to Investors, Ernst & Young Tells Corporate Boards (04/06)
A white paper from the consulting firm anticipates that shareowner support for environmental and social resolutions will continue to grow, and that boards should take concrete steps to ensure that the perspectives of investors are considered.
Academics Propose Agency to Regulate Financial Products (04/05)
Eric Posner and Glen Weyl of the University of Chicago state that a Financial Products Administration would be the Food and Drug Administration of financial derivatives.
Shareowner Resolution Calls for Independent Board Chair at News Corporation (04/04)
Christian Brothers Investment Services resubmits proposal introduced at the media giant's annual meeting last October, citing the company's inaction in implementing reforms in the wake of phone hacking scandal.
Green Jobs Topped Three Million in 2010 (04/03)
In its first-ever tally of green jobs, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics counts 3.1 million jobs in businesses that benefit the environment or conserve natural resources.
Sustainable Investment Forums to Produce Global Trends Report (04/02)
The report, scheduled for December, will be the first to assess environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) investment strategies across jurisdictions; a global website is also planned.
Monsanto Is Green America's Biggest Corporate Fool (04/01)
The agribusiness giant triumphs over the US Chamber of Commerce and Chevron for manufacturing genetically modified organisms and a corporate legacy that includes Agent Orange and DDT.
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.
$1 Million Grant to Automate Reporting by Community Development Financial Institutions (03/28)
The grant from Citi Foundation will help the CDFI Assessment and Ratings System automate its financial performance data collection system for community development financial institutions.
RepRisk Names World's Most Controversial Mining Companies (03/24)
Alpha Natural Resources, the parent company of Massey Energy, ranks first on RepRisk's list, which highlights the consequences of environmental, social and governance risks on corporate reputations, access to capital, and licenses to operate.
Corporate Governance Advocates Take on Political Spending and Contracts with Managers (03/23)
The International Corporate Governance Network publishes a statement on corporate political spending and a model mandate for contracts between asset owners and managers.
Investors Observe World Water Day 2012 with Focus on Land Grabs (03/22)
The focus of this year's World Water Day is on water and food security, and the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility launches a campaign to educate institutional investors on the impacts of large acquisitions of farmland in the global South.
Ethisphere Awards 145 Companies for Ethical Performance (03/20)
The annual World's Most Ethical Companies Rankings include 23 companies that have been honored in each of the six years of the award.
New York City Pension Funds File Corporate Governance Resolutions at 13 Companies (03/19)
Shareowners request that Chesapeake Energy and Nabors Industries permit proxy access, and additional resolutions address board declassification, an independent board chair, and a majority voting standard.
PRI Signatories Challenge 29 Corporations to Meet Their Obligations to Report (03/17)
The companies are members of the UN Global Compact but have failed to submit an annual Communication on Progress as required.
Initiative of Calvert Foundation Seeks to Invest in Women (03/15)
A $1 million grant from the Citi Foundation launches the Calvert Foundation's Women Investing in Women Initiative, which seeks to raise $20 million for economic opportunities for women.
Momentum Grows for Integrated Reporting (03/13)
With the Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development three months away, numerous voices speak out on the need for governments to mandate sustainability reporting by large companies.
Business is Encouraged to Uphold Children's Rights (03/12)
The Children's Rights and Business Principles call on companies to expand their commitment beyond child labor and develop policies and due diligence to actively ensure that the rights of children are respected.
SJF Ventures Announces Initial Closing of Impact Investment Fund (03/10)
Capitalized entirely by private investment, the $75 million SJF Ventures III fund will target growth-stage cleantech companies with positive impacts on low-to-moderate income communities.
Investors Continue Pressure for Fracking Disclosure (03/09)
Two guides for investors and companies engaged in hydraulic fracturing have been published in recent months, and four of ten shareowner resolutions calling for increased disclosure of risks have been withdrawn.
Representation of Women on Boards Tops Ten Percent for First Time (03/08)
GovernanceMetrics International's annual report on gender diversity on corporate boards finds incremental improvements, but also that marked disparities persist between industrialized and emerging economies.
Study Identifies Financial Institutions Investing in Nuclear Weapons (03/07)
The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons names 322 financial institutions from 30 countries with substantial investments in the $100 billion-a-year nuclear weapons industry.
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.
Reinsurers Call for National Climate Policy (03/05)
After a year in which losses due to extreme weather events totaled $44 billion, representatives of the reinsurance industry call on US policymakers to acknowledge the reality of climate change and take action on a national policy.
On a Bumpy Road Toward the Sustainable World (03/01)
A morning's reading ranges from Davos to ESG metrics, and the prevailing message is that improved collaboration among all stakeholders is necessary to rescue the world from an unsustainable future.
As You Sow Publishes Proxy Preview (02/29)
The report notes an exponential increase in resolutions addressing the various forms of corporate political spending, while the community impacts of hydraulic fracturing and financial risks associated with coal lead environmental resolutions.
Investors Write to Chevron on Country Selection (02/27)
Following an unproductive meeting with Chevron on its operations in Burma, shareowners make public a letter in which they request transparency in the company's country selection criteria.
Lydenberg's Argument for Reasonable Investment Wins IRRC Award (02/25)
Steven Lydenberg, Chief Investment Officer of Domini Social Investments, wins the first Post-Modern Portfolio Theory award from the IRRC Institute for his paper espousing reasonable, rather than merely rational, investment.
Advisory Warns Investors of Risks of Proposed Copper and Gold Mine in Alaska (02/24)
Citing community opposition, unprecedented infrastructure requirements, and environmental risks, Earthworks questions whether the mine, located in the Bristol Bay area, will ever be built.
Generation Investment Management Calls for Sustainable Capitalism by 2020 (02/22)
The firm expands upon a manifesto written by co-founders Al Gore and David Blood and calls for mandatory integrated reporting and the pricing of externalities, an end to quarterly earnings guidance, and loyalty-drive securities for long-term investors.
HP Agrees to Proxy Access (02/20)
The computer giant agrees to allow institutional investors meeting ownership thresholds to nominate candidates for its Board of Directors.
US Joins in Launch of Initiative to Reduce Short-Lived Climate Pollutants (02/17)
The Climate and Clean Air Coalition, a partnership of the UN Environment Program and six countries, seeks to encourage reductions in methane, black carbon, and ozone that could reduce global warming and avoid millions of premature deaths.
Principles for Investors in Inclusive Finance Publishes Compendium of Case Studies (02/16)
The Principles for Investors in Inclusive Finance wraps up its first year with case studies designed to help provide sustainable financial products and services to the world's poor.
Only 9% of Fund Managers Incorporate ESG Factors (02/15)
Mercer's evaluation of environmental, social, and corporate governance uptake by fund managers reveals that there is considerable room for improvement in how they communicate ESG integration to investors.
House Republicans Gut Key Provision of STOCK Act (02/11)
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor strips provision requiring political intelligence consultants to register as lobbyists from version of bill passed by Senate.
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.
Google Tops Greenpeace International's Cool IT Leaderboard (02/09)
The Internet giant is cited in Greenpeace's fifth ranking of information technology companies for its commitment to renewable energy and its public advocacy for clean energy policies.
ICCR Publishes 2012 Proxy Resolutions and Voting Guide (02/07)
The Guide reveals a focus by members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility on social issues and corporate engagement.
States Require Insurers to Respond to Climate Risk Survey (02/02)
California joins New York and Washington in requiring insurers that that write in excess of $300 million in premiums to respond to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners' Climate Risk Survey.
A 30% Reduction in EU Emissions by 2020 will be Cheaper than Expected (02/01)
Noting that emissions reductions reached 14% by 2010, the European Commission concludes that a 30% cut will cost less than anticipated, and the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change calls for incentives to stimulate private investment.
UN Adaptation Database Highlights Corporate Sustainability Efforts (01/30)
The UN Framework Convention on Climate Change publishes an online database featuring case studies of climate change adaptation activities undertaken by private companies.
Shareowners File 40 Resolutions on Lobbying Expenditures by Corporations (01/27)
Walden Asset Management leads a coalition of investors calling on companies to disclose both direct lobbying expenditures and indirect funding of lobbying through trade associations.
GRI Publishes Sustainability Guidance for Event Organizers (01/26)
Site selection and community impact are among the key issues for which reporting can enhance the accountability of event organizers, the Global Reporting Initiative says.
Ceres Aqua Gauge Helps Investors and Companies Manage Water Risk (01/24)
As population growth and climate change make water risk management an issue for investors and companies to address without delay, the Ceres Aqua Gauge provides a framework for evaluating corporate strategies.
Harrington Investments Requests that Monsanto Report on GMOs (01/23)
The chemical giant refuses to allow a proxy to speak on behalf of the shareowner resolution at tomorrow's annual general meeting, and Harrington joins in call for demonstrations.
On Second Anniversary of Citizens United, Coalition Calls on SEC to Mandate Disclosure (01/20)
The Corporate Reform Coalition holds a press conference in which members express support for a petition requesting that the Securities and Exchange Commission establish rules mandating that public corporations disclose their political spending activities.
Shareowner Activists Urge Siemens to Quit Chamber of Commerce (01/19)
CtW Investment Group writes to the German industrial conglomerate, stating that its position on the Chamber's board is at odds with the trade association's efforts to weaken the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
Shareowners to Corporations: Say No to Political Expenditures (01/18)
Trillium Asset Management and Green Century Capital Management file resolutions with Bank of America, 3M, and Target, requesting that they refrain from making political donations.
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.
Microsoft Says Worker Dispute at Foxconn Plant Resolved (01/12)
Suicide threats by protesting workers at Chinese manufacturing plant recalls 2010 deaths of workers at another Foxconn plant in China.
Investors Advised to Increase Climate-Sensitive Allocations and Engage with Companies and Policymakers on Climate Change (01/11)
Mercer follows up groundbreaking 2011 study of the economic costs of climate change with a survey of the climate change-related investment strategies of institutional investors.
Brazilian Stock Exchange Recommends that Companies Report or Explain (01/07)
BM&FBOVESPA, the Brazilian Stock Exchange, adopts report-or-explain position to encourage sustainability reporting by listing companies in advance of the Rio+20 conference in July.
Ecuadorian Court Upholds $18 Billion Judgment Against Chevron (01/06)
In addition to upholding the judgment for environmental damages in Ecuador's Amazon rainforest, the court also criticized Chevron's efforts to undermine the trial.
States, Cities Call for End of Corporate Personhood (01/05)
California joins Vermont in calling for a constitutional amendment overturning Citizens United, and the New York City Council joins Los Angeles in unanimously supporting an amendment.
Scientists Urge GOP Candidates to Accept Climate Science (12/30)
In advance of early primaries, scientists in Iowa and New Hampshire urge Republican presidential candidates to accept climate science and support efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Shareowner Engagement Leads to Adoption of Human Rights Policy at OM Group (12/29)
The company operates a cobalt smelter in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where a 2007 workplace accident at a joint venture partner killed three children.
Mutual Fund Support for Political Spending Disclosure Inches Upward (12/22)
An analysis prepared for the Center for Political Accountability by Jackie Cook of Fund Votes reveals that mutual fund support for corporate political spending disclosure increased in 2011 for eighth year in a row.
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.
CEO Pay at S&P 500 Companies Up 37% in 2010 (12/19)
Increases in CEO pay are far greater than those of share prices, GovernanceMetrics International finds, and three of the highest paid executives are with companies whose shareowners have expressed dissatisfaction over pay packages.
New Report Surveys Current State of Impact Investing (12/16)
The Global Impact Investing Network finds that impact investors often provide debt investments to microfinance institutions in emerging markets, but provides little to distinguish the practice from sustainable investing.
Community Capital Management's Flagship Fund Surpasses $1 Billion in Assets (12/14)
The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) Qualified Investment CRA Shares fund, which helps banks meet the credit needs of the communities in which they operate, now has over 300 bank shareowners.
SRI in the Rockies: Moskowitz Prize Winner Presents Paper (10/11)
Co-author Sadok El Ghoul explains how corporate social responsibility lowers cost of equity.
New Research Supports Outperformance of ESG Portfolios (08/08)
A white paper by RCM studies data compiled by MSCI ESG Research and finds that a portfolio comprised of best-in-class companies outperforms benchmark over five years.
Sustainable Investment in Sub-Saharan Africa Is Growing (07/21)
A report by IFC finds that private equity and sustainability initiatives undertaken in South Africa have led to $125 billion in sustainable investment in Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa.
Is Corporate Social Responsibility a Distraction? (06/16)
A paper by consultants at Dalberg Global Development Advisors argue for the return of a focus on the single bottom line of corporate profitability, but calls for a long-term horizon that coincides with the interests of sustainable investors.
ESG Criteria Creeping Slowly into Mainstream Investing (08/28)
New report lays out the five hurdles ESG investing has to clear before it can be incorporated on a large scale.
Charities Should Match Investments to Missions Says 83% of Public (08/13)
Survey finds the majority of the public expects charities to invest ethically.
Sunshine is the Best Disinfectant: Shareholder Activists Promote Corporate Transparency (07/23)
SocialFunds writer Bill Baue speaks with Sanford Lewis of the Investor Environmental Health Network on his shareholder activism promoting corporate disclosure
The Very Rich Green Their Portfolios (07/16)
With European and Middle Eastern investors leading the way, high-net-worth investors are putting their money into green technologies and alternative energy sources.
UN PRI Stresses Disclosure (07/02)
Principles for Responsible Investment considers expelling firms who don’t follow disclosure requests.
Mainstream Fund Managers Vary Widely on Social Responsibility (07/01)
Even as more fund managers accept the impact of environmental, social, and corporate governance issues on performance, the application of responsible investment practices is hit or miss with most mainstream firms.
Bob Monks: ExxonMobil Exemplifies Corpocracy (06/30)
SocialFunds writers Bill Baue and Francesca Rheannon interview corporate governance advocate Bob Monks about his shareholder activism at ExxonMobil and his new book, Corpocracy.
Shelley Alpern on How Tar Sands Perpetuate Petro-Addiction (06/26)
SocialFunds writer Bill Baue speaks with Shelley Alpern of Trillium Asset Management about its shareholder activism on oil company exploitation of tar sands.
Principled Companies Praised (06/16)
Ethisphere Magazine publishes its second annual list of the World's Most Ethical Companies.
Envisioning the Sustainable Supply Chain (06/05)
Innovative collaborations between suppliers, retailers and consumers need to be forged so future supply chains support businesses and the environment.
The Toxic 100: New Report on Polluting Companies Hopes to Empower Communities and Shareholders (04/28)
Index of top corporate air polluters updated in new report from researchers at the University of Massachusetts.
The Toxic 100: New Report on Polluting Companies Hopes to Empower Communities and Shareholders (04/28)
Index of top corporate air polluters updated in new report from researchers at University of Massachusetts.
Abolishing Child Labor on West African Cocoa Farms (04/24)
Mil Niepold of Verité on the International Cocoa Verification Board and Bama Athreya of the International Labor Rights Forum on the Commitment to Ethical Cocoa Sourcing.
ICCR Defines the Past, Present, and Future of Shareowner Activism (03/25)
Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility Executive Director Laura Berry speaks with SocialFunds.com about transformative changes in shareowner activism.
B Corporations: Verified Sustainability (03/13)
B Labs takes the guesswork out of which companies are actually working for the future.
SRI Assets Surge Ahead (03/06)
New socially responsible investing study reports one dollar out of every nine dollars under professional management is invested responsibly.
Joel Makower on the GreenBiz.com State of Green Business 2008 Report (02/01)
GreenBiz founder talks about the inaugural report, which surveys the top 10 green business stories of 2007 and introduces the GreenBiz Index.
New Survey Uncovers Discrepancies on Corporate Citizenship Issues (01/29)
There is gap between what executives say on corporate citizenship and what their corporations actually do, finds a survey of over 750 executives.
New SIF Board Chair Elected (01/11)
The Social Investment Forum recently named Cheryl Smith as its new board chairperson.
Top Five Socially Responsible Investing News Stories of 2007 (01/08)
New alternative energy and green funds fuel expansion of socially responsible investing; climate change is pushed to the forefront; community development organizations flourish despite the subprime mortgage debacle; consumers demand healthy products and work environments; and SEC limits shareholder rights.
Whistling Past the Graveyard—Socially Responsible Investing and the Financial Crisis (12/31)
SRI thought leaders analyze the potential impacts of the widespread economic downturn caused by the subprime meltdown and deflating dollar.
Socially Responsible Investing Branches Out Over Asset Classes (12/17)
A handbook published by Boston College's Institute for Responsible Investment outlines how managers can diversify socially responsible investments.
SEC Sacrifices Shareholder Rights to Achieve Temporary Certainty (12/11)
Instead of reaffirming shareholder rights to file resolutions to nominate directors, the SEC cites uncertainty as a rationale for stripping these rights.
Environmental, Social and Governance Standards: Glass Half-Empty or Half-Full? (11/28)
The spread of voluntary and mandatory ESG disclosure and performance standards for business raises the question, how robust is implementation and enforcement?
Launch of Five Climate Change Funds May Enrich Investors, But Won't Save the World (11/15)
Deutsche Bank, F&C, HSBC, Schroders, and Virgin Money launch climate funds, a trend that validates the role of finance in addressing--though not solving--global warming.
Corporate Operations in Burma Fuel Human Rights Abuses, Say Shareowner Activists (10/26)
Shareowner letters to Chevron and Total criticize the piping of revenues to the Burmese regime, while the Norwegian Pension Fund defends its decision not to divest from Total.
Emissions Trading Commodifies Carbon, But Does It Really Help Solve Climate Change? (10/15)
Proponents of carbon trading see markets as the best mechanism for reducing emissions, while critics characterize carbon trading as a devil's bargain that steers profits to polluters.
Contracting Human Rights? Ruggie Teams with IFC on Study (09/26)
Empirical research conducted by John Ruggie and the International Finance Corporation examines if foreign investment contract clauses enable human rights violations.
The Subprime Meltdown and SRI: Engage, Avoid, Predict (09/12)
Shareowner activists engaged banks on predatory lending long before the subprime crisis climaxed, and SRI research predicted the meltdown in time to avoid some impacts.
Leave Only Footprints: Measuring and Managing Corporate Carbon Emissions (09/04)
Corporate carbon footprinting is on the rise, but so too is the number of footprint methodologies, challenging companies and investors to discern the best options. Part two of a two-part article.
To Avoid Risk of Alien Tort Claims Act Cases, Companies Must Improve Human Rights (08/17)
The first-ever corporate ATCA verdict of not guilty does not diminish the ongoing liabilities companies face in US courts for human rights violations committed overseas.
SEC Chair Cox Votes For Two Opposing Proxy Access Proposals--Both May Curtail Shareowner Rights (08/01)
Republican commissioners support a proposal barring shareowners from nominating directors; Democrats support one allowing it, though it introduced other reductions in shareowner power.
Twenty Diverse Companies Make the Sustainability Cut (07/26)
With some help from KLD, SustainableBusiness.com releases their 6th annual Sustainable Business 20 List: The World's Top Sustainable Stocks.
Book Review--Ethical Markets: Growing the Green Economy (07/13)
Author Hazel Henderson's exhaustive survey of the sustainable business landscape serves as a perfect primer on green economics and tracks lesser-known trends and developments.
SustainAbility Predicts How Sustainable Development Will Play Out Over Next Two Decades (06/15)
Part two of this two-part article looks at a recent report from SustainAbility that projects four scenarios of potential developments in sustainability over the next 20 years.
Brundtland Report Celebrates 20th Anniversary Since Coining Sustainable Development (06/11)
Part one of this two-part article examines how the Brundtland Report has promoted sustainable development over the past two decades.
Principles For Responsible Investment Quadruples Assets in First Year (06/01)
The United Nations sponsored Principles for Responsible Investment is only one year old, but have already reached $8 trillion plus in assets and expect to keeping on growing.
Fidelity Divests Large Chunk of Sudan-Related Holdings (05/22)
Despite similar pressure from Sudan divestment activists, Warren Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway retain holdings in PetroChina, which is linked to genocide in Darfur.
Opening Up Pandora's Box: SEC Proxy Roundtable Questions Role of Non-Binding Resolutions (05/15)
SEC officers and panelists discuss the possibility of removing non-binding resolutions from the proxy and replacing them with online communications between shareowners and companies.
Book Review: Deep Economy: The Wealth Of Communities And The Durable Future (05/07)
Author Bill McKibben's latest book helps lay the groundwork to create a more livable and viable world in which less is actually better.
Yes and No: Newmont Recommends Voting For One Resolution, Petitions SEC to Omit Another (05/02)
The actions span the gamut of corporate responses to shareowner resolutions on environmental, social, and governance issues, from wholehearted support to forceful opposition.
Corporate Social Responsibility: Perfect Playing Field for Tipping Points and Cognitive Frames (04/25)
The Lifeworth review of CSR developments in 2006 fuses two popular concepts on social beliefs and change to promote personal, corporate, and societal transformation.
If You Tag It, It Will Be Used: Sustainability Reporting in XBRL (04/16)
Weeks after the latest SEC roundtable on interactive data, the Global Reporting Initiative releases a draft taxonomy of XBRL tags mapped to G3 Sustainability Reporting Guidelines.
Porter and Kramer Framework Melding CSR with Business Strategy Wins Harvard Award (04/10)
The Harvard Business Review grants the 2006 McKinsey Award to an article arguing companies create competitive advantage by integrating social and environmental issues into core strategy.
Carbon Offsets: Modern-Day Indulgences to Assuage Carbon Guilt or Market Mechanism for Supporting Clean Energy (04/04)
Even as they gain popularity as a climate change solution, carbon offsets have come under considerable criticism for diluting action on global warming--the truth likely resides between these extremes.
The World's Poor: Huge Market or Just a Marketer’s Fantasy? (03/29)
New report from the International Finance Corporation and World Resources Institute measures the market-size of the Earth's people who live in poverty.
Shareowner Activism Precedes Development of SRI Slavery Screen (03/27)
Most slavery exists far up the supply chain, and auditing practices do not yet exist to monitor for slavery at second- or third-tier suppliers, so it is too early to enact an enforceable slavery screen.
Ruggie Report Says Voluntary Human Rights Initiatives Set Stage for Binding Global Standards (03/19)
While the report finds significant flaws with voluntary collaborations between corporations and civil society, they currently fill the gap created by nation-states failing to protect human rights.
Mutual Funds Inch Toward More Conscientious Proxy Voting on Social and Environmental Resolutions (03/14)
Corporate social responsibility resolutions addressing climate change reveal the increasing complexity of assessing proxy voting records.
Citigroup, Lehman Brothers, and UBS Report on Climate Risks and Opportunities for Investing (02/27)
Lehman Brothers and UBS agree climate change represents a market failure for neglecting to price carbon externalizations in valuations, while Citigroup makes specific stock picks.
Business for Social Responsibility Fuses the Theoretical and Practical to Promote Sustainability (02/20)
SocialFunds.com speaks with Aron Cramer, CEO of Business for Social Responsibility, about past developments in corporate social responsibility and future trajectories of sustainability.
The Gates Foundation and Mission Related Investing: Room for Alignment? (02/13)
An investigative report into the investment practices of the Gates Foundation has reinvigorated the debate over the obligation of foundations to align their missions with their investments.
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.
Inaugural Report Card Grades College Sustainability on Endowment and Campus Efforts (01/29)
The Sustainable Endowments Institute study finds endowment sustainability lagging campus sustainability policies and initiatives.
Global 100 List Raises the Profile of Sustainability at the World Economic Forum (and Beyond) (01/25)
Competition to make the third annual list of the 100 most sustainable companies--based on ratings by Innovest--continues to spur strong corporate social and environmental performance.
From Competition to Cooperation: Companies Collaborate on Social and Environmental Issues (01/19)
Collaborative initiatives bring together companies, investors, and activists to address issues such as online freedom of expression, climate change, and labor rights in the global supply chain.
The Problem with Voluntary Corporate Initiatives Is -- Well, They Are Voluntary (01/16)
A Harvard study identifies the voluntary nature of such corporate social and environmental initiatives as their pitfall, limiting the ability to gauge their effectiveness.
Study Links Options Backdating to Corporate Governance Weaknesses (01/12)
Harvard Professor Lucian Bebchuk and colleagues use a new method of identifying CEO and outside director manipulation of stock option timing and assert correlations to governance problems.
Top Five Socially Responsible Investing News Stories of 2006 (01/05)
Green investing booms, microfinance pioneer wins Nobel Peace Prize, shareowner democracy increases, resolutions receive record votes, and UN launches Principles of Responsible Investment
Launch of Three New Clean Tech Indexes Culminates Banner Year for Green Investing (12/29)
The three Jefferies Global Clean Technology Indexes join the half-dozen green indexes introduced this year.
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.
Swedish Government Facilitates Corporate Responsibility (12/15)
A SocialFunds.com interview with Elisabeth Dahlin, Ambassador, Head of Global Responsibility, Sweden.
Institutional Investors in France Foresee Continuing Growth of Socially Responsible Investing (12/14)
A Novethic survey tells some of the story behind the numbers documented in the September 2006 Eurosif report on the growth of SRI in Europe.
Retailers Improve on Keeping Violent Video Games Out of the Hands of Children (12/13)
An Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility report also identifies several areas where the seven companies examined stand to improve performance--predominantly on disclosure.
Another Clean Energy Exchange Traded Fund to Launch (12/12)
First Trust Advisors is slated to introduce an ETF that tracks the NASDAQ Clean Edge US Liquid Series Index early next year.
Marriott Combats Child Sexual Exploitation (12/11)
Shareowner engagement by Boston Common Asset Management and the First Swedish National Pension Fund prompts Marriott to explicitly address child sex tourism in its human rights policy.
How to Do Sustainble Banking (12/06)
BankTrack, a coalition of nongovernmental organizations promoting social and environmental responsibility in the finance sector, issues a guide to best practices in sustainable banking.
Eight Percent of Fortune 500 Taking EPA Challenge to Double Their Green Energy Use (12/05)
Fortune 500 companies are installing renewable energy generation on-site as well as purchasing green power directly or through renewable energy certificates.
Pharma Companies Need to Keep Improving AIDS Response, Says ICCR and Nigerian Doctor (12/01)
Chukwumuanya Igboekwu of Physicians for Social Justice adds his own critiques to the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility study on pharmaceutical industry shortcomings in addressing AIDS.
The Growth of Green Building Funds (11/30)
A new urban green real estate fund from Revival Fund Management exemplifies a budding trend toward private funds capitalized by accredited investors.
Ecosystem Depletion Presents Businesses with Risks and Opportunities (11/29)
Four prominent environmental and business organizations report on the business risks and opportunities associated with ecosystem crises such as climate change and water scarcity.
Corporate Accountability Improves, Progressing on Stakeholder Engagement But Not Assurance (11/29)
Vodafone, BP, and Shell top the annual Global Accountability Rating by AccountAbility and CSRnetwork, with Home Depot rising 10 percentage points and Chevron falling 20.
New Exchange Traded Fund Tracks Domini 400 Social Index (11/22)
Barclays Global Investors launches the iShares KLD 400 Social Index ETF.
Book Review: Green to Gold: How Smart Companies Use Environmental Strategy to Innovate, Create Value, and Build Competitive Advantage (11/20)
The plethora of real-life examples of corporate environmental initiatives is where readers will find value in this book from two authors associated with Yale.
Dear Sir or Madam: Stakeholder Letters Push Corporate Sustainability Improvements (11/16)
Letters remains an important mode for addressing environmental, social, and governance issues, encompassing a broader swath than simply communication between shareowners and companies.
Merrill Lynch and World Resources Institute Issue Second Auto Sector Climate Change Report (11/15)
The report again balances stock picking and investment analysis with in-depth discussion of regulatory and market developments in response to global warming and energy security concerns.
Sustainability Reporting Improving, But Not Necessarily Contributing to True Sustainability (11/13)
The biennial survey of global reporters by SustainAbility assesses disclosure on sustainability performance, but refrains from directly assessing corporate sustainability performance.
Study Finds Corporate Political Donations Increase Share Price, But Ignores Potential Risks (11/10)
The academic paper documents up to six percent annual return increase when companies support more candidates, but it neglects to address rising legal risks of donations being defined as bribes.
Merrill Lynch Uses CDFI Assessment and Ratings System on $93 Million Community Investment (11/08)
While many investors use the CARS ratings as secondary information in their community investment decisions, Merrill Lynch will use it as its primary underwriting tool.
KLD Fills Gap in Socially Responsible Investing by Launching Equity Income Index (11/07)
The KLD Dividend Achievers Social Index, created in partnership with Mergent, provides a new option for passive investment vehicles in this previously underdeveloped asset allocation in SRI.
As Climate Debate Matures, Companies Strategize Solutions and Investors Push for Disclosure (11/03)
Companies are taking tangible actions to minimize risks and seize opportunities related to climate change, while investors promote more robust climate-related disclosure.
Two New ETFs Fight Climate Change: One Bridges Shift to Cleaner Energy, One Pushes Cleantech (11/02)
The PowerShares WilderHill Progressive Energy Portfolio and the PowerShares Cleantech Portfolio offer investors increasing choice for investing in climate change solutions.
Pax World Drops Zero Tolerance Screens on Alcohol and Gambling (10/26)
SocialFunds.com speaks with Pax World CEO Joe Keefe about changes approved today, including the addition of governance, climate change, and human rights screens.
Winslow Conservation Index Outperforms the S&P 500 and Russell 2000 (10/25)
Winslow Management Company back-tested five-year performance of 15 companies focused on conservation, an oft-overlooked component of the alternative energy equation.
PepsiCo and Coca-Cola Get Cs on Report Card for Ten Percent Recycled Content in Bottles (10/24)
The report, conducted by the As You Sow (AYS) Foundation and the Container Recycling Institute, graded the ten other beverage companies D- and F on recycling.
Votes for Social and Environmental Resolutions Rising, But Proxy Firm Support Still Lagging (10/23)
Over a quarter of social and environmental resolutions topped 15 percent support this proxy season, but proxy advisory firm recommendations supporting such proposals remain low.
(PRODUCT) RED Combats HIV/AIDS by Funneling Portions of Sales to the Global Fund (10/19)
Gap Inc commits half of profits from its RED-branded product line to the Global Fund, exemplifying this new business model for generating sustainable funds for addressing the AIDS pandemic.
Nobel Prize Links Microfinance to Peace (10/17)
The granting of the Nobel Peace Prize to Muhammad Yunus and the Grameen Bank breaks new ground by explicitly linking economic development to peace development.
Blue Funds to Invest in Companies that Support Democrats (10/13)
The two new funds seek to capitalize on research that finds that Democrat-supporting companies significantly outperform Republican-supporting companies.
Global Compact Aligns with GRI and the Practical Side of the Change Agenda (10/12)
In part two of this two-part interview, SocialFunds.com speaks with Georg Kell about new alliances facilitating Communication on Progress reporting as well as broader issues facing the Global Compact.
Global Compact Puts 335 Companies in Deep Freezer Until They Communicate on Progress (10/11)
In part one of this two-part interview, SocialFunds.com speaks with Georg Kell about the de-listing of 335 companies from the Global Compact for failing to issue Communication on Progress reports.
Microfinance Crosses Continental Divide with $100 Million Commitment from TIAA-CREF (10/09)
TIAA-CREF inaugurated its Global Microfinance Investment Program by purchasing from ProCredit Holdings $43 million in private equity shares, a new strategy in microfinance.
Investors Call on S&P 500 Companies to Use New Global Reporting Initiative G3 Guidelines (10/05)
Only 13 percent of the S&P 500 issues GRI reports--those that do see the move as insulating them against the possibility of future mandated disclosure on issues such as climate risk.
FTSE4Good Deletes Nine Companies on Environmental and Supply Chain Labor Standards (10/04)
FTSE4Good criteria promote incremental progress in corporate social responsibility performance, and climate change is the latest topic covered in newly proposed standards.
New Socially Responsible Investing Portfolios Offer Alternatives to SRI Mutual Funds (10/03)
Investment advisors can now offer retail clients separate accounts tracking seven different indexes, and a new index is geared toward high net worth individuals with Catholic values.
Why Aren't We Here Yesterday? A Conversation with Social Investment Forum CEO Lisa Woll (09/28)
SocialFunds.com speaks with Lisa Woll as well as SIF President Tim Smith about the new CEO position and the future direction of SIF and socially responsible investing generally.
BP, John Deere, Goldman Sachs, and Allianz Among Renewable Energy Award Winners (09/27)
The third annual award ceremony, sponsored by Euromoney and Ernst and Young, took place during the Renewable Energy Finance Forum.
Emerging Markets Emerging as Socially Responsible Investing Opportunities (09/26)
A report by the Ethical Investment Research Services examines 50 emerging market companies using various SRI screens, and finds a number of possible plays.
Mainstreaming of SRI Boosts Assets in Europe Over One Trillion Euros (09/25)
The latest report by Eurosif on socially responsible investing in Europe notes the distinction between core SRI, which is steady, and broad SRI, which is fueling the growth.
Pennsylvania Treasurer Keys into Clean Tech Investing and Green Screens (09/21)
Keystone Green Investment Strategy commits state to $40 million in green private investments, $50 million shifted to managers investing in clean tech, and environmental screening.
Canadian Social Investment Organization Recommends Mandating Global Reporting Initiative (09/20)
In a submission to the National Roundtables on Corporate Social Responsibility, SIO advocates for amending the Canada Business Corporations Act to mandate annual GRI reporting.
Carbon Disclosure Project Finds Tipping Point in Awareness But Not Action on Climate Risks (09/19)
CDP4 reveals almost three quarters of FT500 tracking their greenhouse gas emissions, but less than half of those who think climate change poses risks are reducing GHG emissions.
Academic Joins Shareowners in Advocating Corporate Lobbying Reform (09/18)
Yale University Professor Bob Repetto issues paper calling for companies to rapidly adopt best practice on corporate lobbying, including oversight and approval by independent directors.
Court Affirms Shareowner Right to File Resolutions on Proxy Access for Nominating Directors (09/14)
The decision, which simply upholds existing rules that SEC practice had departed from, fills the void left when the SEC proposed then abandoned a rule on proxy access for nominating directors.
DJSI Takes Holistic Approach to Assessing and Promoting Corporate Sustainability (09/11)
Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes assesses overall sustainability performance, driving constant improvement through the competitiveness to attain best-in-class status.
Barclays Files for Permission to Launch iShares ETF Tracking the Domini Social Index (09/07)
The exchange-traded fund will likely have a low expense ratio, but will not conduct shareowner engagement like the other fund tracking the DSI, the Green Century Equity Fund, does.
The Ratio of Greed: Report Pierces Numbing Numbers of Executive Excess (09/06)
United for a Fair Economy and Institute for Policy Studies publish 13th annual study examining CEO compensation, which continues its upward trend while worker pay stagnates.
Pax World and Citizens Announce Engagement (09/05)
The marriage would consolidate two leading socially responsible investing firms with primarily complementary offerings.
Hydropower Stocks as an Alternative Energy Play (08/31)
Phaethon and Creative Investment Research recommend hydro to gain exposure to the energy boom, contending new technologies offer potential for reducing environmental impacts.
Green Century Equity Fund Seeks Shareowner Okay to Continue Tracking Domini Social Index (08/30)
Green Century also announced its intention to lower the expense ratio for the fund with aim of enlarging the fund's investor base.
How Insurers Are (and Are Not) Tackling Climate Risk in Underwriting, Investing, and Policies (08/29)
A new report from Ceres identifies almost 200 activities recently introduced by insurers to address climate change, but calls on the industry for further action.
Trucost Joins Yale Professor to Devise Tool to Gauge Financial Cost of Environmental Impacts (08/25)
Professor Robert Repetto and Trucost Researcher Dan Dias apply the TRUEVA methodology for measuring externalities in financial terms to the US electric sector, which scores terribly.
Domini Shareowners Approve Shift from Index Tracking to Active Management (08/24)
The transition carries implications for investors, such as capital gains taxes, which Domini is strategically mitigating.
EPA Workers Want SRI Funds in Retirement Plan, But Congress Drags Its Feet on Bill (08/22)
A 2005 survey finds almost all Environmental Protection Agency employees want socially responsible investing options, while a Bill adding a SRI option languishes two years in committee.
ICCR Benchmarks Pharma Responses to AIDS and Diseases of Poverty in Emerging Markets (08/18)
The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility report assesses 15 pharmaceutical companies, and finds all of them falling short of best practice in most areas on AIDS and neglected diseases.
Alternative Energy Revolution Fueled by New Fund Launches Despite Sector Downturn (08/17)
The launch of the Guinness Atkinson Alternative Energy Fund testifies to optimism about the sub-sector echoed by the launch of the first renewable energy hedge fund by Ardsley Partners.
Calvert and Ford Foundations Help Launch Public Radio Fund to Democratize the Airwaves (08/10)
The foundations jointly seeded $4.5 million in the revolving loan fund administered by Denver-based Public Radio Capital to provide low-interest loans to public radio projects nationally.
Shareowners Push TimeWarner on Movies Depicting Smoking, Recycled Paper, and Pay Disparity (08/09)
Part two of this two-part article documents steps forward made by TimeWarner, as well as areas where shareowner activists continue to press for progress.
Shareowner Activists See Progress at TimeWarner, and Room for Improvement (08/08)
In part one of this two-part article, activists applaud the company on its first corporate social responsibility report while continuing to push on environmental, social, and governance issues.
ADVANCE Converts Corporate Environmental Metrics Into Monetary Terms (08/03)
The transparent methodology stands to advance corporate social responsibility and socially responsible investing, but it remains to be seen if it measures true sustainability.
Biofuels May Not Be Sustainability Panacea, According to Bank Sarasin Report (08/02)
The report identifies strengths and weaknesses of biofuels from social and environmental perspectives, as well as positing minimum sustainability criteria to qualify for investment.
BP, Suncor, and Shell Top Oil Sector Sustainability Rating; Chevron and ExxonMobil Rank Low (08/01)
The report by Jantzi Research examines 23 oil companies worldwide on environmental issues such as greenhouse gas emissions as well as human rights and other social issues.
First Socially Responsible Investing Portfolio Devoted to Diversity Launched (07/31)
Minority-owned Creative Investment Research conceived of the portfolio to promote corporate diversity while targeting women and minority investors for economic empowerment.
The Pages of Corporate Sustainability and Responsibility (07/28)
Books addressing climate change dominate the fourth annual SocialFunds.com Summer Reading List recommended by socially responsible investing and corporate social responsibility leaders.
Nuns and Priests File Depleted Uranium Bunker Buster Resolution at Three Weapons Companies (07/26)
The resolution goes to vote next week at Alliant Techsystems, and already received more than double the support needed to re-file next year at Lockheed Martin and Textron.
Survey Examines Nomenclature and Numbers Fueling SRI and Extra-Financial Research (07/25)
The fourth annual survey from Thomson Extel and the UK Social Investment Forum looks beyond the numbers to assess the role of language in promoting uptake of SRI research.
Trillium Takes the Reins from Winslow in Managing the Green Century Balanced Fund (07/24)
The transition in portfolio managers has shifted the fund back to its roots as a core portfolio holding by reducing risk and diversifying holdings across the multi-cap space.
Filing Resolutions at Mutual Funds: The Next Frontier for Shareowner Activism? (07/21)
Eight years after the Northwest Corporate Accountability Project first filed an environmental shareowner resolution, it will finally go to vote at the Merrill Lynch Global Allocation Fund.
Parnassus Small Cap Fund Identifies Unique Sustainability Characteristics to Outperform Russell 2000 (07/19)
While the introduction of the Parnassus Workplace Fund a year ago piqued interest, the Parnassus Small Cap Fund unveiled at the same time is turning heads with strong financial performance.
UN Advances Business Case for Materiality of SRI, Leaving Skeptics Little Wiggle Room (07/18)
A new UNEP FI report assesses how investment banks are integrating environmental, social, and governance factors and linking them to financial performance in their research.
Survey Reveals TIAA-CREF Investor Desire to Up Commitment to SRI (07/17)
TIAA-CREF promises to respond to participants, of whom over three-quarters prioritize social and environmental considerations in investing choices.
Revised Equator Principles Fall Short of International Best Practice for Project Finance (07/12)
While some observers praise the strengthening of labor rights, others decry the failure to implement adequate transparency, accountability, and governance mechanisms.
Some Applaud Rise in Sustainability Reporting, Others Say It Masks Corporate Un-sustainability (07/11)
A new study documents the increase in sustainability reporting, but a paper by St. Andrews researchers considers corporate sustainability an unrealistic goal under current economic system.
Missouri Farmers Union Credit Union Supports Sustainability in Low-Income Rural Areas (07/10)
The new credit union supports cooperative entrepreneurial models that advance social responsibility and environmental sustainability in low-income agricultural regions.
Assessing Job Creation as a Social Indicator Correlating to Financial Performance (07/06)
A new study from Switzerland-based Pictet & Cie argues that job creation eclipses all other labor issues as a key indicator of corporate social responsibility, and measures its impact on returns.
Recycling 1.2--Dell, HP, and Apple Upgrade Takeback Programs to Slouch Toward Sustainability (07/05)
The Computer TakeBack Campaign applauds the improvements while mapping the long road the computer industry still has to travel to attain true sustainability.
Does Trucost Measurement of Corporate Carbon Footprints Reduce Environmental Impacts? (07/03)
Trucost ranks the carbon intensity in UK portfolios, arguing for overweighting companies with lower carbon footprints to reduce ecological impact while maintaining performance.
Sending Funds Home to Mexico Just Got Cheaper for Latino Community Credit Union Members (06/29)
The Durham, North Carolina-based community development credit union will charge a flat $3 fee, use the exchange rate set by the Fed, and allow recipients to set up accounts in Mexico.
Missouri Treasurer Implements Anti-Terrorism Screen on State Fund (06/28)
The screen excludes Sudan as a state sponsor of terrorism, not necessarily as a genocidal regime, distinguishing this strategy from other Sudan-related state divestment strategies.
Book Review--Shareholder Participation and the Corporation: A Fresh Inter-disciplinary Approach in Happiness (06/27)
Australian Law Professor James McConvill applies empirical research on happiness to corporations, specifically focusing on the case it makes for shareowner empowerment.
Semantics and Semitics: Presbyterian Church Investment to Focus on Israeli-Palestinian Peace (06/26)
A recommendation approved by the church General Assembly apologizes to Jews and refines language while reaffirming commitment to corporate engagement with divestment as last resort.
Correlating Proxy Advisory Firm Recommendations with Voting Results (06/20)
A look at the link between recommendations by Institutional Shareholder Services, Glass Lewis, and PROXYGovernance and voting results at Citigroup, Chevron, ExxonMobil, and Wal-Mart.
Norwegian Government Pension Fund Dumps Wal-Mart and Freeport on Ethical Exclusions (06/16)
The $230 billion global fund--one of the largest pension funds in the world--cited Wal-Mart for systematic human rights violations and Freeport for serious environmental damage.
World Resources Institute and Citigroup Team Up to Report on Solutions to Climate Change (06/15)
The report recommends a dozen companies poised to profit from a carbon-constrained future, including Archer Daniels Midland, Caterpillar, Cypress Semiconductor, GE, Itron, Johnson Controls, Monsanto, and Waste Management
Why Do Minorities Receive More Subprime Mortgages? Can You Say, Kickback? (06/14)
A new Center for Responsible Lending study shoots holes in industry rationale that bad credit histories of African-Americans and Latinos account for disproportionate subprime mortgages.
Winslow and Jupiter Launch Global Green Fund Using Only Positive Environmental Criteria (06/12)
The Jupiter Green Investment Trust pioneers cross-continent collaboration and evolution from negative screening to positive sustainability criteria.
Corporate Shenanigans: Companies Dis Shareowners at Annual Meetings (06/09)
Home Depot exemplifies a phenomenon of companies manipulating annual meeting protocols to disempower shareowners, following in the footsteps of Weyerhaeuser, Whole Foods, and others.
Book Review--Managing the Business Case for Sustainability: The Integration of Social, Environmental, and Economic Performance (06/07)
The book presents a wide breadth of academic and practitioner perspectives on corporate social and environmental sustainability.
Bank of China International Investment Managers Launches First SRI Fund in China (06/06)
The fund combines quantitative screening with qualitative assessment on issues such as corporate governance and social responsibility, but it is unclear how it will handle human rights.
The Numbers--and the Stories Behind Them--on Community Development Financial Institutions (06/02)
CDFI Data Project recently released the most comprehensive report on the CDFI industry, with statistics documenting CDFI growth and case studies illustrating positive social impacts.
Wainwright Bank and Equal Exchange Partner to Offer the First Branded Certificate of Deposit (06/01)
This new branded CD model is particularly suited to socially responsible banks, companies, and investors, as the increased social returns can counterbalance the slightly higher financial risks.
Survey Starts to Pry Open Black Box of University Endowment Holdings and Proxy Voting (05/31)
The survey, conducted by the Sustainable Endowments Institute, finds the vast majority of universities and colleges veiling their holdings and proxy voting records in secrecy.
Applying an Ant Colony Mentality to Extra-Financial Factors and Enhanced Analytics (05/30)
A report from the Universities Superannuation Scheme, a member of the Enhanced Analytics Initiative, calls for diverse, community-wide advocacy of factoring extra-financials into research.
Domini Fund to Shift from Indexing to Active Management (05/26)
Domini Social Investments proposes shifting the Domini Social Equity Fund from tracking the Domini 400 Social Index to being actively managed by Wellington Management.
Listmania! Corporate Sustainability and Responsibility Lists Drive Improved Performance (05/25)
CSR lists take the old adage--what gets measured gets managed--one step further by spotlighting the ranking process, thereby encouraging better corporate social and environmental performance.
Using the Same Tape Measure: MicroRate To Launch Tool for Rating Microfinance Funds (05/24)
The rating tool, a project supported by Gray Ghost Microfinance Fund, Omidyar Network, and Gates Foundation, is yet another step toward establishing microfinance as a distinct asset class.
Ecological Community Loan Pool Directly Links Ecologically Minded Investors to Eco-Preneurs (05/23)
The portal created by Ecostructure Financial tweaks the community development financial institution model to allow investors to lend directly to startups solving environmental problems.
Japanese Fund First to Track KLD Global Climate 100 Index (05/19)
The construction methodology of the Global Climate 100 distinguishes it from other clean energy indexes, and distinguishes this fund from other Japanese eco funds.
Chemical Companies Unprepared to Reduce Toxicity for European REACH Regulations (05/17)
An Ethical Investment Research Service report finds on Akzo Nobel advanced in preparation for REACH, while an Innovest report debunks industry claims that the rules will cripple them.
Amgen Recommends Support for Political Donations Resolution, Bolstering Broader Campaign (05/16)
The Center for Political Accountability, which coordinates the political contributions campaign, released a report on trade association contributions that previews its 2007 proxy season strategy.
Hog Manure Fertilizes Improvements in Environmental Management at Smithfield Foods (05/13)
Fines for Clean Water Act violations and a lawsuit settlement spur Smithfield to clean up its act and move toward environmental leadership, but it still has a way to go to complete a turnaround.
Digging for More than Gold: SRI Letter Asks Newmont to Address Western Shoshone Concerns (05/11)
The letter cites a recent decision by the United Nations Committee for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination to support Western Shoshone claims.
Another Clean Energy Index Launches to Capitalize on Transition from Dependence on Fossil Fuels (05/10)
The NASDAQ Clean Edge US Index joins several other recently launched clean energy indexes tracking solar photovoltaic, biofuel, wind, and fuel cell companies.
Confirming the CalPERS Effect: Academic Study Links Shareowner Activism to Financial Gain (05/09)
Examining companies targeted for governance reform by the CalPERS Focus List, the study presents data correlating activism to increasing shareowner value as well as cautionary notes.
Proxy Season Report Geared to Foundations Helps Others Navigate Proxy Landscape (05/08)
As You Sow Foundation and Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors report allows for stepping back by providing a useful overview as well as an in-depth look at behind-the-scenes dialogue.
Student-Managed Socially Responsible Investing Fund Outperforms the Market (05/05)
The faculty advisor to the Arnone-Lerer SRI Fund at Villanova University attributes a quarter of the outperformance to environmental, social, and governance factors.
Investor Environmental Health Network Addresses Product Toxicity Through Safer Alternatives (05/04)
The network is coordinating 11 shareowner resolutions addressing product toxicity at companies such as Avon, Becton-Dickinson, CVS, Dow, DuPont, and Whole Foods Market, among others.
United Nations Endorses SRI Strategies in Launching Principles for Responsible Investment (05/02)
Some 50 institutional investors globally representing $4 trillion in assets have signed on to the Principles, which promote the consideration of environmental, social and governance factors.
Voting Recommendations on Shareowner Resolutions Vary Widely at Proxy Advisory Firms (04/18)
Part one of this two-part article compares Institutional Shareholder Services, Glass Lewis, and PROXY Governance vote recommendations on resolutions at Citigroup and Chevron.
Wal-Mart Discloses Equal Employment Opportunity Data (04/14)
The company joined six others in the S&P 100 that publicly disclose their EEO-1 report, but Wal-Mart still faces shareowner action on union-busting and selling gems mined in Burma.
Enterprise Social Fund First to Tap Corporate Community for Community Investing (04/12)
The fund partners Enterprise Community Partners, which will manage the portfolio, with Deutsche Bank, which will seek investment from socially responsible companies and individuals.
New Analysis of Sustainability Risks and Opportunities in Developing Asian Markets (04/11)
New report from ASrIA and IFC seeks to bring consideration of environmental, social, and governance factors into investment decisions in developing Asian markets.
Is Contrarian Investing Consistent With or Contrary to Socially Responsible Investing? (04/07)
SRI practitioners say that the contrarian focus on long-term prospects and overall health of a company suggest yes, while its focus on timing suggests maybe no.
Bush Administration Proposes Axing Equal Opportunity Survey (04/06)
The survey gathers tenure-track and compensation information by gender and race that is unavailable elsewhere, prompting socially responsible investors and others to oppose the move.
Common Good Bank Advances One Branch of Community Investing Evolution (04/05)
The bank promotes the common good by distributing excess profits to the community and by making all lending and spending decisions through participatory democracy.
Analysis Advocates Strategic Approach to Corporate Social Responsibility (04/04)
McKinsey Quarterly provides in-depth analysis of its January 2006 survey documenting increasing executive interest in CSR, a finding correlated by an American Society for Quality poll.
Social Footprint Introduces Simple Elegance in Measuring Corporate Sustainability Performance (03/30)
The method conceived by the Center for Sustainable Innovation for quantifying corporate social and environmental impacts uses quotients to compare company action to sustainability goals.
Shareowner Resolutions Overcome Obstacles to Promote Sustainability Reporting (03/29)
A campaign advocating for sustainability reporting refines its strategies, shifting from requiring adherence to recommending Global Reporting Initiative guidelines.
Corporate Action on Climate Change Improves Over Past Three Years, But Still Insufficient (03/28)
A report from Ceres benchmarks corporate governance on climate change, finding steady gains by leaders while some laggards leapfrog toward the top and other laggards stagnate at the bottom.
White House and Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility Address Pediatric AIDS (03/24)
Bush Administration launches a new public-private partnership on Pediatric AIDS, an area where ICCR engages pharmaceutical companies in shareowner advocacy.
Book Review--Responsible Investment (03/23)
An impressive and wide-ranging list of contributing writers advance a balance between elucidating the strengths of socially responsible investing while also exposing its weaknesses.
Facing Campaign on Farm Working Conditions, McDonald's to Heed Independent Study Results (03/22)
The Coalition of Immokalee Workers urges McDonald's to improve farm working conditions, which the company is addressing through a study by the Center for Reflection, Education, and Action.
Cost of Clean Energy Decreases to Compete with Its Dirtier Counterparts, According to Report (03/21)
The Clean Edge report surveys clean energy, documenting market growth, strong stock performance, and expansion of venture capital investment, as well as projecting future trends.
Thirty Years and Counting: Cofounder Wayne Silby Recounts the Birth of Calvert (03/18)
To celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of Calvert, SocialFunds.com speaks with co-founder Wayne Silby about its genesis, development, and future.
A Serendipitous Match: Davis Advisors Takes Over MMA Praxis Core Stock Fund (03/16)
The portfolio holding of Wal-Mart exemplifies (oddly enough) how both Davis Advisors and MMA Praxis emphasize the importance of stewardship and shareowner empowerment.
FTSE4Good Semi-Annual Review Boots 16 US Companies on Environmental Criteria (03/15)
Of the 19 deletions, only one company was dropped due to human rights (instead of environmental) criteria, and all but three deletions were US-based companies.
US Banks Sink to the Bottom of the Barrel on Latest Sustainability Ratings from Oekom (03/14)
Most US banks fail to disclose enough information on their social and environmental performance to qualify for analysis, and only four of 21 analyzed earned above D-level grades.
Whole Foods Market Gags Shareowners at Annual Meeting (03/10)
A leader on corporate social responsibility, Whole Foods lags on corporate governance by stymieing shareowner democracy.
Sudan Presents Investment Risk as Genocidal Regime and State Sponsor of Terrorism (03/09)
Socially responsible investing research provider IdealsWork Financial now offers data from Conflict Securities Advisory Group on corporate exposure to human rights abuses in Sudan.
Wells Fargo Issues Alternative Energy Report to Join Ranks of Banks Advancing SRI Research (03/08)
The report provides an overview of the alternative energy market as well as the pros and cons of investment opportunities in wind, solar, hydroelectric, hydrogen, biomass, and even nuclear.
SEC Forces Chevron, Dow, and CVS to Include Shareowner Resolutions on Their Proxies (03/07)
Part two of this two-part article examines no-action activity thus far in the 2006 proxy season, focusing on attempts to apply the personal grievance rule and expand a new risk assessment rule.
Resolution Withdrawals Signal Success in Shareowner Advocacy Early in 2006 Proxy Season (03/06)
Part one of this two-part article examines withdrawal of resolutions on climate change, sexual orientation nondiscrimination, political contributions, and HIV/AIDS policies.
SRI Community Adding Its Two Cents to Comments on GRI G3 Guidelines (03/02)
The Global Reporting Initiative is seeking public comments on its new sustainability reporting guidelines by March 31st.
Book Review--Strategic Corporate Social Responsibility: Stakeholders in a Global Environment (03/01)
The book maps the landscape of CSR, advocates a strategic approach taking global stakeholders into account, and presents a wealth of case studies to illustrate its points.
State Laws Effectively Curb Predatory Lending Without Stifling Subprime Market, Study Finds (02/28)
The Center for Responsible Lending study rebuts opponents of state anti-predatory lending laws, and suggests significant implications for the two competing anti-predatory bills now in Congress.
Bank Policies Fail to Meet International Social and Environmental Standards, Report Says (02/25)
The 39 banks assessed fall far short on global sustainability standards, and fail to disclose enough information on implementation to even be assessed by NGO coalition BankTrack.
Evergreen Solar and Energy Conversion Devices Rated Outperformers in Piper Jaffray Solar Report (02/23)
The report continues a trend of mainstream equity research using socially responsible investing strategies, and SRI funds confirm this assessment through wide exposure to these two companies.
Defining Corporate Complicity in Human Rights Abuses (02/22)
Business and Human Rights Seminar report maps the landscape of corporate complicity in human rights abuses, and addresses the dichotomy of mandatory laws versus voluntary codes.
Opening the Umbrella of Socially Responsible Investing to Include Energy Efficient Mortgages (02/21)
Indigo Financial Group promotes energy efficient mortgages, which have long been available through a Fannie Mae program but have yet to reach their market potential.
IT Company Collusion with Chinese Authorities to Repress Free Expression Shorts Shareowner Value (02/17)
Boston Common Asset Management submits testimony to congressional hearings asserting that protecting shareholder value and respecting human rights are not mutually exclusive mandates.
Financial Wonks Meet Treehuggers: New Tool Places Valuation on Corporate Sustainability (02/14)
The sdEffect analytical framework takes the next step in establishing metrics to translate sustainable development into valuation.
Two New Indexes Help Wean Us From Oil Addiction Via Clean Energy and Cleantech (02/10)
The WilderHill New Energy Global Innovation Index tracks clean energy companies internationally, while the Cleantech Index tracks cleantech companies in the US.
Shareowner Action on Product Toxicity Shifts from Isolated Resolutions to Become a Campaign (02/09)
Fueling this development is the increasing visibility of product toxicity in the news, with the Environmental Protection Agency issuing record fines.
KLD and ISS Offer Research Tools for Divesting from Sudanese Genocide and Terrorism (02/07)
The KLD tool focuses narrowly on the Illinois law mandating divestment from companies doing business with the Sudan; the ISS tool focuses beyond divestment and on other state sponsors of terrorism.
Using Mutual Fund Proxy Voting Data to Promote More Conscientious Voting (02/03)
The final installment of this multi-part series steps back to consider the implications of the findings and how to harness them to push mutual funds to support corporate social responsibility.
Two Sides of the Same Coin: Surveys Track Growth of Interest in CSR and SRI (02/01)
Part two of this two-part article focuses on a survey by McKinsey Quarterly on increasing interest from global corporate executives in corporate social responsibility.
Two Sides of the Same Coin: Surveys Track Growth of Interest in SRI and CSR (01/31)
Part one of this two-part article focuses on a survey by Mercer Investment Consulting on increasing interest from institutional investors in socially responsible investing.
How to Determine the Top 100 Sustainable Companies in the World (01/28)
Innovest Strategic Value Advisors and Corporate Knights announce the Global 100 Most Sustainable Companies at the World Economic Forum, documenting financial outpeformance.
Social Investment Forum Trends Report Tracks Rises and Falls of Socially Responsible Investing (01/26)
The 2005 report documents increases since 2003 in assets overall in SRI, in SRI mutual funds, and in shareholder advocacy, but decreases in overall screened assets and in screened separate accounts.
Eroding Support for Shareowner Resolutions on Climate Change Revealed by Unpublished Data (01/25)
In part three of this multi-part article, SocialFunds.com examines unpublished data associated with a recent report on mutual fund proxy voting from The Corporate Library, and finds decreasing support for climate change resolutions.
In the Year of the Oil Boom, Some SRI Funds Look Elsewhere for Strong Performance in 2005 (01/24)
The top-performing socially responsible investing funds compared to their category peers (SRI and non-SRI alike) drew strong performance from pharma, tech, and financials.
Whole Foods, FedEx Kinko's Snap up Renewable Energy Credits (01/19)
Renewable energy credits continue to gain ground in North America as FedEx Kinko's and organic supermarket chain Whole Foods Market each announce major new purchasing deals.
Unpublished Data Clarifies SRI Proxy Voting on CSR Resolutions (01/18)
In part two in this multi-part series, SocialFunds.com examines unpublished data associated with a recent report from The Corporate Library, and finds that statistics are not always what they seem at first glance.
The Corporate Library Report on Mutual Fund Proxy Voting Finds Stagnation and Even Retreat (01/17)
Part one of this multi-part series discusses the report findings on decreasing mainstream fund support for CSR resolutions; subsequent articles examine unpublished data from the research.
GE Comes Clean, Disclosing Costs Related to PCB Cleanup on the Hudson (01/12)
The move prompts the Tri-State Coalition for Responsible Investment, which characterized some of these expenditures as delay tactics, to withdraw its shareowner resolution requesting this information.
Majority-Vote Director Election Shareowner Resolutions To Top 100, Dominate Proxy Season (01/10)
A memo from corporate law firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz opines that majority-vote elections will become universal, but shareowners still seek proxy access to nominate directors.
Wal-Mart Faces Host of Shareowner Resolutions, From Union-Busting to Sustainability Reporting (01/06)
The broad range of resolutions suggests that the sustainability commitments announced by Wal-Mart last year did not convince shareowners that the company has solved all its challenges.
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.
Alien Tort Claims Act Lawsuit Alleges Slavery and Child Labor on Liberian Firestone Plantation (12/30)
The International Labor Rights Fund calls this its strongest ATCA case yet because the evidence of forced labor is so clear and Firestone owns and operates the plantation.
Socially Responsible Property Investment Still on the Drafting Table (12/29)
A blueprint of the fledgling field of socially responsible real estate investment.
Are European Finance Sector Corporate Social Responsibility Initiatives Adequate? (12/23)
A report from a recent EU conference on CSR suggest so, while a Corporate Responsibility Coalition report says voluntary CSR initiatives and current regulation fall short.
Verite Report Identifies Exploitation of Foreign Contract Laborers in Asia and the Middle East (12/20)
The report uncovers placement fees that exceed legal limits, forced overtime, loans with interest rates of up to 60 percent, and so-called runaway insurance deposits that are not refunded.
EPA Tries to Pull a Disappearing Act on the Toxics Release Inventory (12/16)
In response to the Environmental Protection Agency proposal to dilute TRI, the socially responsible investing community launches the SaveTRI.org website.
Solar Energy Helps Fuel Socially Responsible Investing (12/15)
Managers from Winslow Green Growth Fund, New Alternatives Fund, and Portfolio 21 discuss the opportunities and challenges of investing in solar power.
SRI Community Releases Retailer Guidelines to Avoid Violent Video Game Sales to Kids (12/14)
The Interfaith Center for Corporate Responsibility guidelines address underage exposure to graphic violence, strong sexual content, and racist themes, as well as impact on shareholder value.
Tool for Tracking Greenhouse Gas Reductions Launched at UN Climate Change Conference (12/13)
The World Business Council for Sustainable Development and the World Resources Institute release a GHG accounting tool for projects to complement their existing corporate-wide tool.
Socially Responsible Investing Advances Anti-Racism in Helping Rebuild New Orleans (12/12)
In addition to supporting community investment and leveraging influence through shareowner advocacy, social investors can help rebuild in the aftermath of Katrina by naming root problems.
UK Kills Operating and Financial Review of Environmental and Social Information (12/08)
The move, which was seen as capitulation to the business community, leads to legal challenges.
Australian Report on Globalization of the Mainstreaming of Socially Responsible Investing (12/06)
New report examines how governments worldwide promote the mainstreaming of SRI, focusing on Australian policy options in a way that exemplifies issues facing other governments.
PROXY Governance Diversifies Proxy Advisory Choice (12/02)
The new proxy advisory firm expands options for fiduciaries.
First Steps: Corporate Engagement on HIV/AIDS Improves Since Last World AIDS Day (12/01)
Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS Best Practice AIDS Standard represents an important step forward, and companies such as Intel are responding to shareowner dialogue with ICCR.
A Light Bulb Turns On: Goldman Sachs First Investment Bank to Adopt Environmental Policy (11/30)
The policy matches the robustness of other such policies recently adopted by global financial institutions, but the status of Goldman Sachs as an investment bank brings added significance.
Calvert World Values Fund Tackles Challenges of International Socially Responsible Investing (11/29)
The fund delivers double-digit three-year returns for shareholders while screening for corporate environmental, social, and governance performance in international and emerging markets.
New International Finance Corporation Sustainability Standards: Watershed or Watered Down? (11/23)
A group of socially responsible investors express concern over perceived shortcomings in the proposed IFC policy revisions, while the IFC points out where the policies break new ground.
Citigroup Smith Barney Report Seeks to Bridge Divide Between SRI and Traditional Analysis (11/21)
The report seeks to cross the metaphorical river dividing socially responsible investing analysts, who assess sustainability, from traditional analysts, who examine financial fundamentals.
Fonkoze Helps Transform Microfinance to Reach the Poorest of the Poor in Haiti (11/18)
After convening a summit on how to modify microfinance to serve the extreme poor, Fonkoze adapts a model pioneered by the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee.
Radical/Conservative: Innovest Integrates Sustainability Factors into Financial Analysis (11/17)
Innovest Strategic Value Advisors reconciles socially responsible investing research with traditional investment research by fusing social, environmental, and financial considerations.
Shareowner Empowerment Is Alive and Well: a Preview of the 2006 Proxy Season (11/16)
Part two of this two-part article examines the developing trends in shareowner activism as resolutions are filed for the upcoming proxy season.
Forging Ahead from the Crossroads: Reviewing the 2005 Proxy Season (11/14)
Part one of this two-part article looks back at this year's proxy season, which was highlighted by majority vote director election proposals while part two previews the upcoming proxy season.
One Year On: Global Compact Maps Progress on Mainstreaming ESG Considerations (11/10)
Two recent reports paint a vivid picture of developments over the past year on integrating environmental, social, and governance considerations into traditional financial analysis.
Consortium Advances Microfinance as an Emerging New Asset Class (11/09)
The Global Commercial Microfinance Consortium, with its $75 million fund, links mainstream financial institutions to socially responsible investment practitioners with microfinance experience.
Tearing Down the Great Firewall (11/08)
Social investors issue a statement holding information technology companies accountable for collusion with repressive regimes such as China that stifle dissent expressed on the Internet.
Book Review--The Challenge to Power: Money, Investing, and Democracy (11/07)
John Harrington compiles voluminous evidence to diagnose what ails modern corporatocracy, and prescribes a comprehensive cure with socially responsible investing playing a key role.
Fiduciary Duty Redefined to Allow (and Sometimes Require) Environmental, Social and Governance Considerations (11/03)
A report commissioned by UNEP FI and prepared by Freshfields attorneys dispels the persistent myth that laws prevent fiduciaries from considering environmental, social, and governance issues.
Insurers at the Crossroads: Intersection Between Insurance and Sustainability is a Busy Corner (11/02)
Swiss Re exemplifies global sustainability leadership, as the chair of its US arm gives the keynote address at a summit on climate change and insurance in Connecticut.
Counting Stars: Top Morningstar Ratings Bespeak Strong Performance for SRI Funds (11/01)
Of the 60-odd broadly-screened socially responsible investing funds tracked by SocialFunds.com, three earn 5-star ratings and 12 earn 4-star ratings from Morningstar.
SRI Research from UBS Strikes Balance Between Ethics and Economics (10/28)
The new socially responsible investing team at UBS quantifies the costs of corporate social and environmental impacts as a means of effecting ethical and economic rectification.
Transforming the Myth of Democratic Shareholder Power into a Reality (10/27)
A new paper by Harvard Professor Lucian Bebchuk debunks the myth of shareholder power to replace directors, and recommends reforms that could jumpstart the stalled SEC proxy access rule.
Wal-Mart Embraces Sustainability: Does the SRI Community Buy It? (10/26)
Socially responsible investors cautiously applaud Wal-Mart for committing to social and environmental sustainability, but remain highly skeptical about actual implementation.
Community Development Financial Institutions Spread Like Wild Grass in Indian Country (10/25)
First Nations Oweesta Corporation serves as a national umbrella organization providing the structural framework and organizational support to fuel current exponential Native CDFI growth.
Institutional Investors Drive Research on Mainstreaming of SRI by Investment Managers (10/21)
A new line of research at Mercer Investment Consulting rates proxy voting, shareholder engagement, and analysis of environmental, social, and governance issues by mainstream investment managers.
New Index and Exchange Traded Fund Expose Risks and Potentials in Nanotech (10/20)
The Innovest Nanotech Index assesses social and environmental risks, while the PowerShares Lux Nanotech Portfolio focuses more on investment opportunities.
Scaling Community Investment: Report Addresses Growth in Community Development Finance (10/19)
An Aspen Institute report serves as the basis of a series of conferences at regional federal reserve banks on how to best scale up community investment.
Book Review--The False Promise of Pay for Performance: Embracing a Positive Model of the Company Executive (10/18)
According to James McConvill, the problem with perverse executive compensation is not managerial power, as an earlier book suggests, but rather the very pay for performance system.
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.
Moskowitz Prize Winning Study Correlates Corporate Eco-Efficiency and Financial Outperformance (10/13)
The paper finds a significant and positive relationship between Innovest eco-efficiency ratings and both market-based and accounting-based financial performance metrics.
Divining the Future of Socially Responsible Investing (10/12)
A study commissioned by Vancity Credit Union surveys 42 SRI thought leaders to identify trends, opportunities, and obstacles, as well as potential developments that defy prediction.
Changing of the Guard: Vanguard Pulls a Switcheroo on SRI Index Providers (10/06)
Vanguard is swapping the benchmark for its socially responsible investing index fund from the Calvert Social Index to the FTSE4Good US Select Index.
Spreading SRI: Goldman Sachs Adds Its Own Twist in Social and Environmental Assessment (10/05)
As socially responsible investment strategies migrate into the mainstream, mainstream analysts apply social and environmental considerations in innovative ways.
ICCR Online Database Eases Access to Information on Shareowner Resolutions (10/04)
EthVest, the new web-based tool from the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, provides access to 2,000-plus shareowner resolutions and 12-plus years of shareowner action.
Lighthouse G3: Third Generation GRI Guidelines Shine a Beacon for Sustainability Reporters (09/30)
The Global Reporting Initiative dubbed its guidelines overhaul and update "G3," in which it is defining metrics for the Indicators and integrating the Principles with the Indicators.
Insurers Behind the Curve on Addressing and Disclosing Risks of Climate Change (09/29)
Two reports, one from Ceres and one from Friends of the Earth, concur that climate change is catching insurance companies, which are particularly impacted by global warming, unawares.
GAO Finds Federal Corporate Social Responsibility Programs Widespread But Uncoordinated (09/28)
The Congressional Human Rights Caucus convenes a briefing today to discuss the findings of a Government Accountability Office report on US government initiatives on CSR.
Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes Launch United States and North America Indexes (09/23)
The new indexes apply a best-in-class approach that differs from the approach of US socially responsible investing indexes currently available, which focus on exclusionary screening.
Domini Goes Abroad with New European Fund (09/22)
The fund allows US social investors to diversify their portfolios into a region with attractive investment opportunities and corporations with strong sustainability commitments.
Third Carbon Disclosure Project Survey Finds Increasing Action on Climate Change (09/21)
CDP3, now sponsored by 155 institutional investors with more than $21 trillion in assets, also reveals some significant footdragging by the Financial Times 500 companies.
Community Investment Bridges the Gap from Destitution to Restitution After Hurricane Katrina (09/20)
Predominantly low-income African Americans were barred from crossing the bridge out of New Orleans, but now community development bridge loans are spanning the gulf back to stability.
AccountAbility Cooks Up a New Recipe with Stakeholder Engagement Standards (09/16)
An exposure draft of new AA1000 Stakeholder Engagement Standards to be released next week may prove useful to the socially responsible investment community of shareholder activists.
Taking Account of Corporate Social Responsibility Reports (09/15)
A Pleon survey of CSR reporting finds differing opinions on best practice for report assurance and verification amongst respondents as well as professional experts.
Business Impacts on Millennium Development Goals: A Virtuous Cycle or a Coin Toss? (09/14)
A new World Business Council for Sustainable Development report profiles corporate initiatives to alleviate poverty, but focuses less attention on how business may confound such goals.
A Next Generation SRI Strategy: The Henderson Industries of the Future Fund (09/13)
By extending to its entire portfolio a focus on ten sustainability industries, Henderson has conceived of a novel approach to socially responsible investing.
A Semantic Hermeneutics of SRI (09/09)
KLD Research & Analytics Founding President Peter Kinder examines limitations of the term socially responsible investing, and identifies both overemphasized and overlooked distinctions.
Banks and Financial Service Providers Figure Prominently in FTSE4Good Attrition, DJSI Matriculation (09/08)
Corporate social responsibility plays an important role at banks and financial service companies, which are not only recipients but also increasingly purveyors of socially responsible investment.
Blogging SRI (09/07)
SRI Notes and SRI-Extra harness the strengths of weblogs to comment candidly on developments in socially responsible investment as they happen.
Labor Day List Celebrates Corporate-Union Collaboration (09/02)
The inaugural list launched by American Rights at Work spotlights positive relationships between companies and their workers.
War Millionaires: Defense Contractor CEO Pay Up 200 Percent Since 9/11 (09/01)
The ratio between CEO and worker pay across the market climbs to 431 : 1, up from 301 : 1 last year, according to a new CEO pay study from United for a Fair Economy and the Institute for Policy Studies.
Book Review--The Market for Virtue: The Potential and Limits of Corporate Social Responsibility (08/31)
David Vogel scrutinizes the business case for CSR and finds no causal link between corporate virtue and profitability, but rather finds a robust niche market for it.
Toxic 100 Uses Enhanced Toxics Release Inventory Data to List Top Corporate Polluters (08/30)
The Toxic 100 aggregates facility-level TRI data to compute company-wide toxic emissions performance.
Shareowner Resolution Asks Monsanto to Create Ethics Oversight Committee (08/26)
The company stonewalls inquiries related to the resolution, which springs from a $1.5 million settlement with the SEC and DOJ earlier this year regarding a bribe Monstanto paid in Indonesia.
Human Rights Site Spotlights Bank Investment in Chinese Manufacturer Linked to Forced Labor (08/25)
The Business & Human Rights Resource Centre posts an article alleging Chinese firm Henan Rebecca uses forced labor, as well as responses from banks implicated through investment for their clients.
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.
Social(k) Allows Socially Responsible Investment Retirement Portfolios to More Fully Diversify (08/22)
ExpertPlan administers a 401(k) platform that solves the problem of limited asset class diversification by offering 25 SRI funds from nine fund families than span the spectrum.
Generation Gap: Young Sell-Side Analysts Fail to Fill Void in Sustainability Research (08/17)
A survey expecting to find the upcoming generation of securities analysts eagerly assessing environmental, social, and governance issues in their recommendations discovers the exact opposite.
Lack of Human Rights Policy Concerns Chevron Shareowners in Light of Unocal Merger (08/16)
Part two of this two-part article examines the implications of the delay in adopting a human rights policy given the inheritance of Unocal holdings in Burma and Alien Tort Claims Act cases.
New Document Alleges Tie Between Chevron and Human Rights Abuses in Nigeria (08/12)
Identified in the discovery phase of a case proceeding at state and federal levels, the invoice and receipt indicate Chevron paid Nigerian soldiers for services on a day several villagers were allegedly killed (part one of a two-part article.)
Arthur D Little Study Identifies Trends in Sustainability Innovation (08/10)
The report finds increasing corporate commitment to sustainability innovation, though it demonstrates room for more growth.
CalSTRS Follows Calvert Blueprint to Capitalize on Money Manager Diversity (08/09)
Both CalSTRS and Calvert see efforts to identify emerging money managers as smart business and socially responsible as well.
Power to the People: Amnesty Launches Grassroots Shareowner Advocacy Program (08/05)
The SharePower program encourages ordinary people to tell institutional investors holding shares in their name to vote for shareowner resolutions supporting human rights.
Book Review--Profitable Socially Responsible Investing?: An Institutional Investor's Guide (08/04)
An invaluable tool for fiduciaries considering SRI, the book advances original research finding competitive financial performance for positive screening.
Winslow Green Growth Fund: On the Rise Again (08/03)
Following up on its stellar 2003 performance, the environmentally-focused fund is again significantly outperforming its peers and benchmark.
Retirement Plans, Fiduciary Duty, and SRI: Complicated But Compatible (08/02)
A paper published in a professional journal establishes the validity of employing socially responsible investing in retirement plans while also outlining the complexities of the practice.
Ethical Investment Research Service Follows Socially Responsible Investing Growth around the Globe (07/26)
Spawned by the anti-apartheid movement seeking information on companies operating in South Africa, EIRIS has since grown astride with the expansion of SRI.
Shell Doubles Cost Projections of Sakhalin II, Project Critics Redouble Opposition (07/21)
The largest oil and gas project in the world meets resistance over concerns about its social and environmental impacts, as well as its economic sustainability.
Oneida Nation Loan to Lakota Fund Marks First Intertribal Community Development Financing (07/20)
While the World Bank Global Fund for Indigenous Peoples covers only developing nations and socially responsible investors have yet to support the Lakota Fund, a fellow tribe fills gap.
The Lowdown from Corporate Governance and Proxy Advisory Experts on ISS-IRRC Merger (07/19)
Implications of the buyout of the Investor Responsibility Research Center by Institutional Shareholder Services on social research and competition in proxy advisory services.
TIAA-CREF Creates New Director of Social Investing Post But Refrains From Some SRI Strategies (07/15)
TIAA-CREF enhances its proxy voting and practices some community investment, but finds obstacles to supporting community development financial institutions and SRI venture capital.
Gap and Nike Engage Stakeholders For Assurance Statements on Sustainability Reports (07/14)
Sustainability reports, whose credibility is enhanced by such stakeholder engagement and assurance statements, are gaining in significance, as KLD indexes add Nike due in part to its report.
Thinking Outside the Big-Box: Report Suggests Smart Growth for Retailer Siting Decisions (07/13)
Domini Social Investments and Christian Brothers Investment Services provide retailers nine recommendations, examples of best practice and cautionary tales, and helpful resources.
Appalachian Federal Credit Union Celebrates Silver Anniversary With New HQ (07/12)
With $16 million in assets, AFCU helps counteract poverty in one of the poorest regions of the US by providing fairly priced loans to low-income earners, even those with bad credit histories.
French Pension Reserve Fund Commits 600 Million Euros to Socially Responsible Investment (07/08)
The fund seeks to drive innovation and best practice through this significant infusion of cash into the European SRI asset management community.
Vigeo-Ethibel Merger Forms New European Socially Responsible Investment Research Firm (07/07)
The Vigeo Group becomes the largest corporate social responsibility rating agency in Europe, with global operations that the newly-created company plans to expand.
New KLD Index Benchmarks 100 Global Companies Proactively Addressing Climate Change (07/06)
While the G8 agreement on climate change may amount to hot air, the KLD Global Climate 100 Index will allow investors to support high-profile large-cap companies as well as little-known small caps actively mitigating climate change.
Chicago Climate Exchange Prepares 4-year Extension (07/01)
There are now over 100 members in the Chicago Climate Exchange (CCX).
Annual LOHAS Survey Finds High Consumer Interest in Corporate Responsibility (06/28)
LOHAS represents a quarter of the US population, according to surveyor Natural Marketing Institute.
The Calvert Group Funds Film on Social Entrepreneurs Airing on Public Broadcasting System (06/24)
One segment of the film profiles Grameen Bank founder Muhammad Yunus, who pioneered the microcredit model promoted by Calvert Foundation and other community investment advocates.
Panning for Gold: Principle Profits Applies Socially Responsible Investing to Microcaps (06/23)
Massachusetts firm examines financial, social, and environmental performance to identify future winners.
KPMG Finds More Than Half of Fortune 250 Issuing Standalone Sustainability Reports (06/22)
Surveying the top 250 companies in the Fortune 500, the percentage rises to almost two thirds when considering annual financial reports that address corporate responsibility.
Merrill Lynch and World Resources Institute Analyze Climate Change Investment Opportunities (06/21)
The jointly-produced report, the first such collaboration between a mainstream US investment bank and a environmentalist nonprofit, breaks new ground by issuing stock recommendations.
Women's Equity Mutual Fund Supports Businesswomen Through Screening and Now Microfinance (06/17)
Subadvisor Walden Asset Management provides research on how companies treat women, and Blue Orchard Finance provides a new securitized product supporting microfinance institutions.
The Power of Three: SJF Ventures Sets Precedent in Community Development Venture Capital (06/16)
SJF and its partners won all three award categories at the annual conference of the Community Development Venture Capital Alliance, which promotes economic, social, and environmental advancement.
Business for Social Responsibility Suggests Improvements to the Global Reporting Initiative (06/15)
A BSR report surveys 19 member companies on their experience and opinions of sustainability reporting according to GRI guidelines, identifying both strengths and weaknesses.
Mount Holyoke First US College to Dedicate Fund Exclusively to Community Investment (06/14)
While other schools have devoted some funds to community investment, this move by the Massachusetts-based women's college sets precedent and may lead to its use of other SRI strategies.
Nuclear Power: Still an Environmental Scourge or Now a Climate Change Mitigator? (06/09)
Despite prominent environmentalist opinions that low greenhouse gas emissions of nuclear power eclipse its problems, socially responsible investment funds still screen nukes out.
Canadian Corporate Sustainability Reporting In Its Infancy, Shows Signs of Growth (06/08)
A lengthy report released yesterday by the Certified General Accountants Association of Canada provides a primer on sustainability reporting as well as a statistical snapshot.
Gabelli Asset Management Launches SRI Hedge Fund Focused on Catholic Values (06/07)
The fund uses short-selling and merger arbitrage strategies, and screens out companies involved in abortion, contraception, stem cells, and pornography, as well as the top 50 defense contractors.
Report Equips Investors With Tools To Analyze Climate Risk in Uncertain Policy Atmosphere (06/03)
Investor Network on Climate Risk and World Resources Institute team up on a report that provides a framework for valuating climate risk in the absence of regulatory clarity.
As HIV/AIDS Migrates Beyond Africa to Other Emerging Markets, So Too Do Business Risks (06/02)
Concern over HIV/AIDS-related business risks is also shifting from the socially responsible investment community to the mainstream investment community.
Students and States Seek to End Genocide in Sudan Through Divestment Campaigns (06/01)
Students urge Stanford University to follow in the footsteps of Harvard University by divesting, and urge California senators to pass legislation like Illinois did.
Sustainable Asset Management Signs On to Eurosif Transparency Guidelines (05/31)
Although SAM already practices comprehensive disclosure, its fulfillment of the European Social Investment Forum guidelines reveals the strengths and weaknesses of standardization.
Microfinance and Donor-Advised Fund Provide Tsunami Relief (05/27)
A Grameen Foundation USA report examines barriers and opportunities for using microfinance as tsunami relief, and the Calvert Foundation funnels donations to tsunami-ravaged Sri Lanka.
The Ghost of a Shareholder Resolution Haunts ExxonMobil Annual Meeting (05/26)
Despite an unprecedented 28 percent vote for a first-year climate change resolution and strong support for seven others, the censoring of a resolution quashes shareholder democracy.
The Value of Local Expertise in SRI Research: Jantzi Research Knows Canada (05/25)
Jantzi Research conducts socially responsible investment research and corporate social responsibility rating and ranking focused on the Canadian market primarily for institutional investors.
Catching a Rising Knife: Sophia Collier Manages the Citizens Value Fund (05/20)
Whereas former portfolio manager Shelly Meyers tried to catch falling knives, Ms. Collier shifted to a more conservative strategy that has generated much better returns.
LISC Commits $300 Million to Preserve Affordable Housing for Low-Income Earners (05/18)
The Local Initiatives Support Corporation will work with its affiliates, the National Equity Fund and the Community Development Trust, to counteract expiration of affordable housing subsidies.
Report Ranks Best German Corporate Sustainability Reports (05/17)
Henkel, adidas-Salomon, Volkswagen, BMW, and Deutsche Telekom rank in the top 10 of the 150 German companies surveyed.
IFC Urged to Include Corporate Screens and Address Climate Change in New Standards (05/13)
A group of socially responsible investment practitioners recommends revisions to new International Finance Corporation social and environmental sustainability standards.
Book Review--The Bhopal Reader: Remembering Twenty Years of the World's Worst Industrial Disaster (05/12)
A collection of primary and secondary sources spanning the twenty-year quest for corporate accountability from Union Carbide and now Dow for the 1984 chemical leak that killed thousands upon thousands.
Institutional Investors Call on SEC, Wall Street, and Companies to Address Climate Risk (05/11)
The second Investor Summit on Climate Risk focused on information, from the perspectives of disclosure, data generation, and analysis, as a key to transforming climate risk into opportunity.
Virgin Trees in Kleenex: Greenpeace Lambasts Kimberly-Clark Fiber Sourcing (05/06)
Between 15 and 30 percent of K-C tissue products fiber originates from the Canadian Boreal Forest, according to a Greenpeace report, and only 19 percent of its fiber is recycled.
Long-term Performance of 15 Year-Old Domini 400 Social Index Helps Validate SRI (05/05)
Since its 1990 inception, the DSI has outperformed the S&P 500, helping quash the widespread perception that socially responsible investing automatically underperforms.
Report Asserts Shareholders Have The Right To Know More About DuPont PFOA Liabilities (05/04)
The report documents information on perfluorooctanoic acid, a Teflon ingredient associated with human health hazards, which DuPont withheld from federal regulators and investors alike.
Newly-Launched Funds Advance the Maturation of Socially Responsible Investment (05/03)
Calvert launches two fund of funds comprised of existing Calvert funds across a range of asset classes; Domini releases load-share clone of flagship fund for use by commission-based brokers.
JPMorgan Chase Environmental Policy Triggers Tipping Point for US Bank Sustainability (04/29)
The JPMC policy surpasses environmental best practice established by Citigroup and Bank of America in some areas, but also lags these sustainability leaders in others.
Parnassus Workplace Fund Launches Today, Along With New Small- and Mid-Cap SRI Funds (04/28)
While many socially responsible investment funds assess workplace criteria, the Parnassus fund is the first to lead with this issue.
Pharma and Biotech Companies Just Starting to Pass the Transparency Litmus Test (04/27)
oekom research rates the social and environmental sustainability performance of 27 pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, and finds disclosure lacking across the board.
Study Argues Less is More in Socially Responsible Investment Research (04/25)
The proposed method may correlate environmental sustainability to financial performance well, but the radical reductionism seems ill-suited to a field that thrives on diversity of approaches.
Measuring Social Returns on Community Development Venture Capital Investment (04/21)
The Community Development Venture Capital Alliance releases the Measuring Impacts Toolkit, which attempts to quantify social returns from community investments.
Weyerhaeuser To Screen Shareholder Questions at Annual Meeting Tomorrow (04/20)
Shifting from the standard open-mic Question and Answer format, the CEO will act as gatekeeper for shareholder questions, a practice viewed by shareholders as restricting their rights.
CARS Hits the Road: First Seven Community Development Financial Institutions Rated (04/15)
The National Community Capital Association CDFI Assessment and Rating System has another 11 ratings in the works, and expects to by fully operational by 2007.
Vermont Issues Call to Investment Managers for Environmentally Sustainable Portfolio (04/14)
Request for Information asks investment managers about their positive and negative screening practices as well as financial performance, particularly of environmentally sustainable portfolios.
SRI Funds Vote Proxies More Conscientiously Than Conventional Funds on Corporate Governance (04/13)
A study on proxy voting by socially responsible investment and conventional funds finds SRI funds voting against management more often on social, environmental, and governance issues.
Ecuadorian Attorney General Tells ChevronTexaco Shareholders Remediation Agreement May Be Invalid (04/12)
The questionable validity of the remediation agreement indemnifying ChevronTexaco could carry implications for the lawsuit and beyond (part three of a multipart article).
Asphalt Jungle: Did Oil Drilling by Texaco Create Environmental and Social Harm in Ecuador? (04/11)
Both ChevronTexaco and lawsuit plaintiffs are finding evidence of contamination during judicial site inspections: the question is, does it pose human health or environmental risks? (part two of a multi-part article.)
Oil Spread Upon the Waters of Ecuador May Return Harm for ChevronTexaco Shareholders (04/08)
A shareholder delegation surveys the environmental and social impact of oil operations, assessing potential risk from a twelve-year old lawsuit in its judicial inspection phase (part one of a multi-part article).
New SRI Managed Account Uses Options to Capitalize on Market Ups-and-Downs (04/01)
The socially responsible investment team at Piper Jaffray screens the new Redwood Account, which applies the covered options strategy of Kelmoore Investment Company.
Campus Activists and Alumni Donors Want Proxy Voting and Endowment Holdings Disclosure (03/31)
While some US colleges and universities are enhancing endowment transparency and engaging in socially responsible investment, most oppose disclosure and are also retreating from SRI.
To Screen Or Not To Screen?: That May Not Be The Question For Fiduciaries (03/30)
Part two of this two-part article examines the opportunities and limitations that social and environmental sustainability screens present to pension funds and other institutional investors.
Shareowner Activists on Sustainability Take Baby Steps Into Sustainability Screening (03/25)
Part one of this two-part article surveys the landscape of US public pension fund screening of corporate social and environmental sustainability.
Caterpillar Bulldozes Shareowner Concern Over Aiding Alleged Israeli War Crimes (03/24)
Caterpillar faces a shareowner resolution as well as a lawsuit filed by the family of peace activist Rachel Corrie that cites the Nuremberg Tribunal as precedent in alleging war crime complicity.
Coffee, Tea, or . . . Liqueur? Pax World Alcohol Screen Forces Reluctant Divestment from Starbucks (03/23)
While Pax World applies a zero tolerance alcohol screen, other socially responsible investment firms set thresholds for retailers based on the percentage of revenues derived from alcohol sales.
Faith-Based and Environmentalist Shareowners Withdraw Climate Change Resolutions at Six Companies (03/22)
The six oil and gas companies commit to measure, mitigate, and disclose data related to global warming, and evangelicals join their faith-based compatriots in concern over climate change.
Wanted: Socially Responsible Real Estate Investments (03/18)
An academician searches for socially responsible real estate investment trusts, finding few that fit the definition, as well as disagreement over what criteria define SRI REITs.
EPA Expands Program Recognizing Corporate Environmental Performance (03/17)
Environmental Protection Agency Performance Track Program certifies a new crop of company facilities, honors company-wide performance, and serves as an indicator for SRI research.
Not Just for Corporations: Six Microfinance Banks on Three Continents Use GRI Guidelines (03/16)
Microfinance institutions in Africa, Asia, and South America are issuing sustainability reports using Global Reporting Initiative guidelines, as are other non-corporate entities such as GRI itself.
US Representatives Introduce Anti-Predatory Mortgage Lending Bill (03/15)
The bill, based on an effective North Carolina anti- predatory lending law, and is supported by anti-predatory lending activists such as the Center for Responsible Lending and Fair Finance Watch.
A Mainstream Investment Strategist Comes Home to Socially Responsible Investment (03/11)
Adam Seitchik views his move from Deutsche Asset Management, where his team managed $60 billion in assets, to Trillium Asset Management, which manages around $1 billion, as upward mobility.
Biting the Hand That Feeds: Mutual Fund Ties to Corporate Clients Can Affect Proxy Voting (03/10)
Study reveals that individual mutual fund firms do not alter proxy voting whether companies are clients or non-clients, but fund firms with more clients tend to vote and adopt voting policies favoring management.
Taco Bell Agrees to Pay Florida Tomato Pickers A Penny More Per Pound to End Boycott (03/09)
Shareowner activists will also withdraw their resolution if parent company Yum! Brands agrees to join agricultural supply chain working group to address industry-wide reform.
Comparing Citigroup and JP Morgan Chase Policies: Which Stems Illegal Logging in Indonesia? (03/08)
Before providing funding, financial institution policies requiring documentation certifying legitimate timber sourcing may help promote sustainable logging in Southeast Asia.
Campaign to Enhance Pharma Industry Accountability Broadens Shareowner Action (03/04)
The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility sent letters to over 2,750 institutional investors seeking support for three resolutions filed at nine pharmaceutical companies.
Community Credit Union Brings Hope to Low-Income Residents of the Mississippi Delta (03/03)
Hope Community Credit Union launched a $15 million initiative supported by corporate investment and New Markets Tax Credits to promote economic justice in the Mid-South.
Carrots and Sweets: Tying Executive Remuneration to Extra-Financial Performance Indicators (03/02)
A report from Henderson Global Investors and Universities Superannuation Scheme finds incentives for extra-financial performance tied to short-term instead of long-term indicators.
MMA Praxis International Fund Buoyed by Strong Performance in Global Markets (02/25)
Growth is concentrated in sectors and companies that are excluded by social and environmental screens.
Tale of Two Reports: Sustainability Yearbook Compares Extra-Financial to Financial Reporting (02/24)
Published jointly by Sustainable Asset Management and PricewaterhouseCoopers, the yearbook shows how adding extra-financial data to a financial report increases buy recommendations.
Web Design, Lobbying Disclosure Fuel Co-Operative Bank Win of UK Sustainability Reporting Awards (02/23)
The award judges distinguished between sustainability and corporate social responsibility reporting, noting that many reports identifying themselves as the former (which are more rigorous) were actually the latter.
Binding Resolutions and Coordination Circumvent Structural Limitations of Shareowner Action (02/18)
A preview of the 2005 proxy season reveals tactics that challenge the systemic imbalance of power favoring corporate management and directors over shareowners.
Deafening Silence: Corporate Political Contribution Non-Disclosure Impacts Shareowner Value (02/17)
A Center for Political Accountability report documents corporate secrecy on political donations, and a Common Cause report reveals how mutual funds fail to support contribution transparency.
Bush Budget Ghettoizes 18 Community Development Programs, Slashing Their Funds (02/16)
Community development advocates criticize the proposed budget for fiscal year 2006, as the consolidated programs will have to compete with one another for a smaller pool of funds.
First Australian and Israeli Socially Responsible Investing Indexes Launched (02/15)
The Maala SRI Index goes live on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, and both the Australian SAM Sustainability Index and the RepuTex SRI Index will launch imminently down under.
Mixed Messages and Flip-Flops as the SEC Director Nomination Rule Stagnates (02/11)
While the SEC retracts its promise to allow shareowners to file director nomination resolutions, lawsuits secure shareowner rights to nominate directors.
Benchmarking Corporate Governance on Product Toxicity and Safer Alternatives (02/10)
The benchmark, released by the Rose Foundation today, addresses the scientific uncertainty of product toxicity through risk assessment and opportunity identification instead of inaction.
Academic Study Links Predatory Lending to Increased Risk of Foreclosure (02/08)
Prepayment penalties increase the risk of foreclosure by 20 percent, while balloon payments raise the risk to almost 50 percent, according to the University of North Carolina study.
Speaking From Both Sides of the Mouth: The Art and Science of Corporate Tax Avoidance (02/04)
Three reports--by a US tax watchdog, a pair of US academics, and a UK socially responsible investment firm--find troubling trends in corporate tax strategies.
Community Investment Surpasses the $1 Billion Mark at The Rock (02/03)
The Prudential Financial Social Investment Program, one of the oldest community investment programs in the country, has distributed more than $1 billion before its 30th anniversary.
List of Global 100 Most Sustainable Companies Highlights Alcoa, BP, and Toyota (02/02)
Canadian corporate social responsibility magazine Corporate Knights sponsored the list, which is based on sustainability ratings from Innovest Strategic Value Advisors.
Two Socially Responsible Investment Exchange Traded Funds Launch (02/01)
The iShares KLD Select Social Index Fund seeks broad diversification and low risk, while the PowerShares WilderHill Clean Energy Portfolio ETF invests in renewable energy companies.
Reigning In Raines on Bonuses Based on Earnings Before Restatements (01/26)
With restatements of financial earnings reaching record levels in 2004, the question arises whether executive bonuses based on incorrect earnings statements should be recalculated.
Book Review--Faith and Fortune: The Quiet Revolution to Reform American Business (01/25)
Fortune magazine writer Marc Gunther documents the growing link between spiritual values, which he defines broadly to include sustainability, and business conduct.
Pax World Tells Its Shareowners That Market Timers Hit Its High Yield Fund in 2003 (01/21)
In a letter to shareowners, Pax said it believes the market timing differed from the abusive forms associated with the mutual funds scandal and that shareowners did not suffer any material losses.
World Economic Forum Report Finds Decreasing Corporate Awareness and Response to AIDS (01/20)
The report also finds an increase in companies adopting HIV/AIDS policies, a trend confirmed by the Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS.
Monsanto $1.5 Million Fines for Genetic Engineering Bribe Illustrates Risks of GE Strategy (01/19)
The penalties, levied by the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Justice, may lend credence to a shareowner resolution asking Monsanto to report on GE risks.
Enhanced Analytics Initiative Picks Sell-Side Brokerage Houses with Best Intangibles Research (01/18)
EAI awards seven firms and three runners-up for outstanding sell-side analysis of corporate social and environmental issues.
World Economic Forum and AccountAbility Report on Mainstreaming Responsible Investment (01/13)
The report, based on three roundtables convened by the report sponsors, is particularly illuminating in representing attitudes and perceptions toward social and environmental issues of roundtable participants from the mainstream investment community.
ConocoPhillips Bows Out of Arctic Power, Green Century Withdraws ANWR Resolution (01/12)
The oil company left the group lobbying to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge a year ago and neglected to inform resolution filers, who were nonetheless pleased with the development.
Top Five Socially Responsible Investing News Stories of 2004 (01/11)
Shareowner engagement shifted from confrontational to collaborative, sustainability analysis fused with financial analysis, and fiduciary duty expanded to include social and environmental issues.
Addressing the Israel-Palestine Conflict Through Shareowner Action and Selective Divestment (01/06)
Part two of this two-part article examines the Presbyterian Church USA's policy of "phased, selective divestment" and the Episcopal Church's decision to study the issue before responding.
To Divest or Not to Divest: Ethical Considerations of Addressing the Israel-Palestine Conflict (01/05)
Part one of this two-part article examines across-the-board divestment from companies profiting off Israeli policies that harm Palestinians, and the case against divestment.
Latin American Forest Products Company Illustrates Best Practice Sustainability Reporting (01/04)
Terranova issues its second Global Reporting Initiative-based sustainability report, exhibiting many exemplary practices such as stakeholder engagement and external verification.
Calvert First SRI Firm to Issue Global Reporting Initiative-Based Sustainability Report (12/30)
While many small-to-medium-sized enterprises consider sustainability reporting prohibitive, Calvert finds value in doing what it asks publicly traded companies to do.
Report Finds Bank Sector Assessment of Impact on Disadvantaged Communities Lacking (12/29)
AccountAbility and Business for Social Responsibility to apply their new assessment methodology to the pharmaceutical, agricultural, and extractive sectors next.
Dell and Starbucks First Companies to Endorse Calvert Women's Principles (12/22)
The two companies publicly commit to implement the code in their business practices, setting a precedent for other companies to follow in promoting parity for women in business.
UNEP Report Takes First Steps Toward Understanding Slow Consumer Uptake of Sustainability (12/17)
While advancing interesting findings, the report is marred by lack of adequate documentation.
Unocal Alien Tort Claims Act Case Settlement Boosts Corporate Accountability (12/16)
Some interpret the settlement between the energy company and Burmese villagers as setting a practical precedent for holding companies responsible for indirect human rights abuses.
New Indexes Seek to Link Corporate Governance and Diversity to Financial Performance (12/15)
A DiversityInc index and joint FTSE-ISS indexes try to answer if diversity and corporate governance, respectively, correlate to financial outperformance.
Corporations Fight to Keep Political Contributions in the Closet (12/09)
The Center for Political Accountability expands its campaign by advancing shareowner resolutions asking companies to disclose political donations and to provide a business rationale for them.
Two Reports Reveal Proxy Votes Rubber-Stamp Management Recommendations (12/08)
One finds the majority of top US mutual funds voting against climate change resolutions, the other finds contradictory proxy by Canadian pension fund managers.
Ford HIV Report Exemplifies New Shareowner Action Strategy (12/07)
Ford joins Coca-Cola, Cinergy, and others heeding shareowner resolutions requesting reporting on social and environmental issues, but it remains to be seen how far the strategy will extend.
Bhopal, Climate Change Require Shift From Legal Liability to Moral Accountability (12/03)
A report by SustainAbility examines how increasing legal liabilities are blending into moral liabilities, forcing companies to face social and environmental accountability.
Gap-Verite Collaboration Exemplifies Award-Winning Practice on Social Responsibility (12/02)
Verite wins a Social Capitalist Award for labor standards monitoring such as its work with the Gap, whose Social Responsibility Report earns a Social Reporting Award.
ICCR Spends World AIDS Day Preparing Shareowner Resolutions for Upcoming Proxy Season (12/01)
This year's resolution has expanded to cover operations in India and China as well as Africa, and ICCR is campaigning for pharma companies to provide better access to medicines for children.
FTSE4Good Raises the Bar With New Supply Chain Labor Standards Criteria (11/30)
Launched last week, the new criteria allow companies already in FTSE4Good indexes limited time to implement policies, systems, and eventually reporting on supply chain labor standards.
Enhanced Analytics Initiative Offers Sell-Side Analysts Cash to Cover Intangibles (11/23)
A group of European institutional investors launched EAI to encourage mainstream investment analysts to include issues such as corporate governance and climate change in their research.
Rating Corporate Sustainability: Behind the Scenes at Oekom Research (11/22)
SocialFunds.com visits Oekom Research to get a more in-depth look at corporate social and environmental sustainability research.
European Socially Responsible Investment Firms Let the Sun Shine In (11/19)
The European Social Investment Forum releases transparency guidelines covering seventeen socially responsible investment practitioners.
Al Gore and David Blood Graft Sustainability Research into Traditional Investing Analysis (11/09)
The former US vice president and the former Goldman Sachs CEO launch a new investment firm whose research team fully integrates sustainability with fundamentals.
Sustainability Reporting Improves, But Falls Short on Linking to Financial Performance (11/05)
A new benchmarking survey correlates the top 50 corporate non-financial reports to credit ratings, but reports themselves fail to link financial and sustainability performance.
Paul Hawken Critiques Socially Responsible Investment: Is He On Target or Off Base? (11/04)
A Natural Capital Institute report criticizes SRI for lack of standards and transparency on screening and holdings for shareowner action.
Graphing Graft: Transparency International Finds Rampant Corruption in 60 Countries (11/03)
The tenth annual Corruption Perceptions Index highlights the acute problem of corruption in oil-rich countries.
How to Open Your Own Socially Responsible Investment Retirement Portfolio (11/02)
In this real-life profile, an SRI-oriented financial planner advises a 34 year-old woman how to transfer her non-SRI retirement account into a portfolio of SRI mutual funds.
Is CRA the Right Remedy for Race-Based Disparity in Mortgage Lending? (10/29)
A new study finds significant disparity between lending to minorities versus whites, but a Community Reinvestment Act expert questions the focus on CRA as the cure.
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.
SEC Decision on Shareowner Nomination of Corporate Board Directors Still Pending (10/27)
Supporters and opponents of the proposed SEC rule granting shareowner access to the proxy to nominate directors advance their causes while the rule languishes in limbo.
Moskowitz Prize Study Removes Doubt Over Link Between Strong Corporate Social and Financial Performance (10/26)
The study analyzes over 50 published studies on corporate social performance and corporate financial performance, and finds an unambiguous positive relationship.
Fonkoze Partners With Zanmi Lasante to Link Microfinance and Health in Haiti (10/22)
The largest microfinance institution in Haiti teams with a renowned community health provider to launch a new bank and hospital in a rural village.
Socially Responsible Investment Assets On the Up and Up Down Under (10/21)
The Ethical Investment Association in Australia reports that SRI assets have doubled in the three years it has been producing benchmarking surveys.
Are Electronic Components Producers Ready for Environmental Regulation? (10/20)
A Citizens Advisors study surveys 26 electronics components companies, and projects that many of them will be unprepared for European Union laws taking effect in 2006.
FDIC Proposes Rule Watering Down Community Reinvestment Act Requirements (10/19)
The SaveCRA.org website promotes opposition to the rule change, posting information and a sample letter to file with the FDIC before the end of the comment period tomorrow.
Abortion, Sexual Orientation Reveal Diversity of Socially Responsible Investment (10/15)
The umbrella of socially responsible investment encompasses a wide diversity of values, running the gamut from social progressivism to cultural conservatism.
Book Inspires Symposium on How Governance Codifies Excessive Executive Pay (10/14)
The book is written by Harvard Law Professor Lucian Bebchuk and Berkeley Law Professor Jesse Fried, and the Symposium is hosted by Columbia Law School.
Shell and BP Top Innovest CSR Ratings of Integrated Oil and Gas Companies (10/13)
Marathon and several companies operating in emerging markets sink to the bottom of the rankings of corporate social responsibility performers.
Calvert Fills Gap in Small- and Mid-Cap SRI Value Categories With Two New Funds (10/12)
The two new funds add diversification options to the socially responsible investment (SRI) palate.
Morningstar Grades Mutual Fund Governance, SRI Funds Rate Well (10/11)
Morningstar Fiduciary Grades find relatively few areas of weak performance for those socially responsible investment mutual funds rated.
Memo From: SRI Analysts To: Companies--Use GRI Sustainability Reporting Platform! (10/07)
A coalition of 17 socially responsible investment firms recommends that companies disclose social and environmental data using the Global Reporting Initiative.
Global Survey of Socially Responsible Investment Finds Information Lacking (10/06)
Questionnaire respondents express frustration over the reliability of social and environmental information on their SRI holdings, and financial planner ignorance of SRI.
Disclosure: How SEC Proxy Voting Rules May Shift the Definition of Fiduciary Duty (10/05)
Will mandatory disclosure of mutual fund proxy voting records drive change in the general definition of fiduciary duty, or will the principle of undivided loyalty prevent this development? Part two of a two-part article.
Fiduciary Duty, Undivided Loyalty, and Socially Responsible Investment Performance (10/01)
Does the principle of undivided loyalty preclude fiduciaries from practicing SRI, or will competitive SRI financial performance shift the definition of fiduciary Duty? Part one of a two-part article.
Apple Added, Time Warner and Petro-Canada Deleted from FTSE4Good Index Series (09/30)
The biannual review of FTSE4Good constituents resulted in the addition of 79 companies and the deletion of 23.
Blueberries, Bats, and Barns: How Community Investing Aids Small Family Farms (09/29)
The Community Investing Program of the Social Investment Forum and Co-op America honors nine community investment organizations for assisting small family farms.
Material Risks of Genetic Engineering Undisclosed by Food Companies, Report Says (09/28)
A survey of the 35 largest food processors finds only two mentioning genetic engineering risks in their annual reports, and none analyzing these risks.
Institutional Investors Can Now Hedge Climate Risk With New Investment Strategy (09/24)
The strategy combines the investment algorithms of State Street Global Advisors with an environmental overlay from Innovest Strategic Value Advisors.
As Socially Responsible Investment Grows in Japan, FTSE4Good Launches New Index (09/23)
Following on the introduction of the first SRI index by Morningstar Japan last year, FTSE4Good unveils the second SRI index covering the Japanese market exclusively.
EHS Auditors Slow to Take Up GRI (09/22)
Part two of this two-part article addresses changes Environmental, Health & Safety auditors are making in response to the Global Reporting Initiative.
Sarbanes-Oxley Moves EHS Auditing From the Backroom to Boardroom (09/21)
Part one of this two-part article addresses changes Environmental, Health & Safety auditors are making in response to Sarbanes-Oxley; part two addresses changes prompted by the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI).
SEC Asked to Let the Sun Shine on Corporate Political Contributions (09/17)
A group of state and city treasurers and a watchdog group sent letters to the Securities and Exchange Commission requesting mandatory political contributions disclosure.
Report Advocates Breaking Down Barriers to Global Corporate Sustainability Reporting (09/16)
An Association of Chartered Certified Accountants and CorporateRegister.com report tracking sustainability reporting worldwide finds its growth hampered by obstacles.
About Face: Cintas Settles Lawsuit and Supports Vendor Standards Resolution (09/15)
In his apology, Tim Smith of Walden Asset Management highlights the need for accurate information, which Cintas promises to supply in the report requested by the resolution.
Conference Promotes Sustainability Through Corporate Collaboration (09/14)
The Society for Organizational Learning (SoL) Business Innovation for Sustainability Forum calls for cooperation amongst companies as well as with stakeholders.
New Web Tool Identifies Climate Risk and Opportunity in 24 Biggest Mutual Funds (09/10)
KLD Research & Analytics information reveals both positive and negative corporate performance on climate change, allowing retail investors to lobby their mutual funds.
First Alternative Energy Index Spawns Exchange Traded Fund (09/09)
The WilderHill Clean Energy Index, published by the American Stock Exchange, will serve as the basis for an exchange traded fund from PowerShares Capital Management.
As Mutual Funds Prepare to Reveal Proxy Votes, Guideline Disclosure Acts as Acid Test (08/25)
Investor-friendly website accessibility to mutual funds' proxy voting guidelines may signal proxy voting record accessibility and investor-friendly proxy voting.
Got Water? Report Recommends Solutions for Businesses To Address Water Scarcity (08/24)
A new Pacific Institute report outlines the impacts on business of water scarcity, and offers ten steps companies can take to help solve these problems.
Tax Cuts Slash Google IPO Capital Gains Payments to $11 Million (08/20)
A new report uses the Google initial public offering to illustrate how tax cuts reward individuals while robbing programs supported by taxes that incubate business success.
US Banks Criticized for Involvement in China State Bank Bonds (08/19)
Nongovernmental organizations and socially responsible investing firms criticize US banks for selling Chinese bonds that fund socially and environmentally problematic projects.
First and Largest International Microfinance Bond Issued (08/18)
Grameen Foundation USA joins forces with two socially responsible investment firms to issue a $40 million bond to support microfinance institutions in nine developing nations.
Handbook Reports on Sustainability Practice in South Africa (08/17)
Trialogue and the African Institute of Corporate Citizenship join forces to create a comprehensive text placing South African sustainability practice in a global context.
How Do SRI Firms Walk Their Talk When It Comes to Corporate Social Responsibility? (08/13)
Socially responsible investment firms take particulars such as scale and sector into account in their CSR expectations at the companies they own and in their own operations.
Accuracy of Dow Chemical Statements and SEC Filings Questioned (08/12)
On behalf of two socially responsible investment firms, an environmental attorney asks the SEC to probe the factuality of public statements and filings made by Dow Chemical.
The Value of Transformation: The Catholic Equity Fund (08/11)
After transforming itself from three actively managed funds into one index fund, the Catholic Equity Fund works to transform corporate practice through shareowner advocacy.
CRAFund Goes Retail (08/10)
Formerly available only to institutional investors, the Community Reinvestment Act Qualified Investment Fund is now available to individuals through Charles Schwab.
Climate Change a Nuisance? Nine State and City Attorneys General Bet a Lawsuit On It (08/06)
The first climate change lawsuit against corporations, aimed at the top five US carbon dioxide emitters in the utility industry, cites federal common law on public nuisance.
Microcredit Development Fund Helps Transform Household Scraps into Sustainable Entrepreneurship (08/05)
The Deutsche Bank Microcredit Development Fund seeks to alleviate poverty worldwide by helping microfinance institutions grow to scale and achieve sustainability.
Can Corporate Social Responsibility Put the Brakes on HIV in Africa? (08/04)
A field report from Africa by Dan Rosan of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility.
Stakeholder Engagement, Verification, and Transparency in ISO Social Responsibility Standards: An Interview with ISO Secretary-General (08/03)
International Organization for Standardization Secretary-General Alan Bryden discusses these issues and more in the final installment of this three-part interview article.
ISO and Social Responsibility--A Closer Fit Than You Might Think: An Interview with ISO Secretary-General (07/30)
International Organization for Standardization Secretary-General Alan Bryden discusses divergences and convergences of ISO technical standards with social responsibility guidelines (part two of a three-part article).
Answering the Market Call for Social Responsibility Standards: An Interview with ISO Secretary-General (07/29)
International Organization for Standardization Secretary-General Alan Bryden discusses the history and implications of ISO's new social responsibility standards (part one of a three-part article).
Keeping Score: The Mathematics and Linguistics of the World Bank Extractive Industries Review (07/28)
World Bank Group management and socially responsible investors interpret EIR recommendations differently.
Sell-Side Analysts Confirm the Materiality of Sustainability Issues in UN Report (07/23)
A United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative report documents belief in the materiality of corporate social responsibility issues by 11 brokerage houses.
House Votes to Kill Mandatory Expensing of All Stock Options, Sending Bill to Senate (07/22)
The House's passage of the Stock Option Accounting Reform Act reverses Sarbanes-Oxley's commitment to protect independence of FASB as the arbiter of accounting rules.
Two Socially Responsible Investing Funds Generate Double-Digit Year-to-Date Returns (07/21)
The Ariel Fund and the Pax World Growth Fund perform well in the first half of this year.
Assets in CDFIs Grew Twice as Fast as Those in Commercial US Banks (07/20)
A new study of community development financial institutions highlights several key distinctions between CDFIs and mainstream financial institutions.
Senate Calls on the SEC to Enforce Environmental Disclosure Regulations (07/16)
A series of reports issued at a Senate symposium detail how insufficient disclosure of environmental liabilities results from lack of SEC enforcement.
Harvard Study Correlates Staggered Boards With Lower Shareowner Value (07/15)
Evidence presented in the study suggests that staggered boards do not simply reflect lower firm value, but rather that they bring about lower firm value.
How HIV/AIDS Impacts Corporations, and How Corporations Can Impact HIV/AIDS (07/14)
The World Economic Forum and the International Labor Organization report on the impact of HIV/AIDS on business, but will companies respond by addressing HIV/AIDS?
A Brief History of Sustainability Reporting (07/02)
Part one of this two-part article outlines the history of sustainability reporting up to the present; part two projects trends in sustainability reporting into the future.
Does Supreme Court Validation of Alien Tort Claims Act Apply to Corporations? (07/01)
Human rights organizations say yes, lawyers representing corporations in ATCA cases say no, but the Supreme Court opinion itself remains vague on the issue.
How Sustainable Is the Asia Pulp & Paper Sustainability Action Plan? (06/30)
WWF Indonesia calls off its partnership with Asia Pulp & Paper after the company fails to implement commitments to end sourcing of illegal timber (part three of a three-part article.)
Calvert Group Launches Code for Corporations to Profit by Promoting Gender Equality (06/29)
Calvert links equality for women to sustainable development, making the ethical and business cases for implementing its corporate code of conduct for empowering women.
Community Investment Benefits Middle Income Earners in Los Angeles (06/25)
The Genesis Workforce Housing Fund develops the first institutional investor-backed project promoting home-ownership for middle-income earners in the US.
Indonesian Forestry and International Finance Move Toward Sustainability (06/24)
A profile of Asia Pulp and Paper and ABN AMRO focusing on their efforts to reverse environmental, social, and financial devastation through sustainable practices (part two of a three-part article).
How Unsustainable Forestry Practices in Indonesia Impact Sustainable Practice in the US (06/23)
Part one of a three-part article exploring the complex global relationship between sustainable and unsustainable forestry practices.
Auditing Sustainability Reporting (06/21)
As sustainability reporting increases in significance, so too does the auditing of it.
Report Finds CSR Policies on the Rise in Asia, Europe, and North America (06/18)
University of Hong Kong survey overturns some assumptions about the development and prevalence of corporate social responsibility policies.
Community Investment Institutions Managed By and Benefiting African Americans (06/16)
Generations Community Credit Union, Carver Bancorp, and UrbanAmerica are three African American managed community investment institutions.
Rule Proposal Requires Canadian Mutual Funds To Disclose Proxy Votes and Guidelines (06/15)
New Canadian Securities Administrators rule closely resembles the US Securities and Exchange rule.
The Emergence Story Behind Indigenous Peoples Rights Screens (06/10)
Socially responsible investment firms also engage in shareowner action on indigenous peoples rights issues.
Governance Overhaul: An Interview with Tyco Corporate Governance VP Eric Pillmore (06/09)
Mr. Pillmore speaks candidly with SocialFunds.com about rebuilding reputation and trust, engaging stakeholders, and increasing transparency.
US Socially Responsible Investment Indexes Diverse in Style, Study Says (06/08)
A study presented at a recent socially responsible investment conference finds variability in US SRI index construction.
Are the Equator Principles Sincere or Spin? (06/04)
A report calls into question whether signatory banks are complying with the Equator Principles.
Sarona Supports Microfinance To Help Alleviate Poverty in Developing Regions (06/03)
The Sarona Global Investment Fund finances starch processing in Paraguay, a foundation supporting small enterprises in Romania, and a savings and loan cooperative in Haiti.
New SRI Index Optimizes Social and Environmental Performance and Controls Risk (06/02)
The KLD Select Social Index caters to institutional investors by underweighting companies with weak social and environmental performance instead of excluding them.
UK Prepares To Mandate Environmental and Social Reporting (05/28)
Proposed guidelines for Operating and Financial Review reports require British company directors to discuss the effects of social and environmental issues on business.
ExxonMobil Mocks Climate Change, Maine Treasurer Finds It No Laughing Matter (05/27)
Senior management remains resolute in its disbelief of climate change risk.
New Bank of America Policy Sets Best Practice on Climate Change in US Bank Sector (05/26)
Environmentalist organization Rainforest Action Network helps usher Bank of America into the vanguard of US banks improving their environmental responsibility.
Baker & McKenzie Paper Concludes Social Investing Consistent with Fiduciary Duty (05/21)
The opinion of a major US corporate law firm sets the bar for the fiduciary case for SRI.
Carbon Disclosure Project Report and Greenhouse Gas Protocol Release Second Editions (05/19)
Climate change initiatives get a significant boost this month with the release of two revised editions of a report and a protocol for addressing global warming.
Matchmaker Boosts FDIC Limit to $5 Million for Community Development Banks (05/18)
A new system allows community development banks to trade portions of deposits, upping the amount covered by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation to $5 million.
Honda, Toyota, Volkswagen, and Renault Lead Movement Toward Sustainable Mobility (05/13)
Two Japanese carmakers rank highest on the environmental rating of Innovest's latest sector report, while two European companies rank highest on the social rating.
Dell First US Computer Company to Commit to a Global Recycling Goal (05/13)
In its 2004 Sustainability Report, Dell commits to increase its fiscal year 2005 computer recycling 50 percent over fiscal year 2004 levels.
ChevronTexaco Faces Class-Action Lawsuit in Ecuador Over Environmental Damage (05/11)
A resolution asking ChevronTexaco to report on new initiatives to address its legacy of environmental damage in Ecuador gained nine percent support from shareowners.
Daiwa Launches Japan's Newest Socially Responsible Investment Fund (05/07)
The new Daiwa SRI Fund will focus not only social and environmental issues, but also corporate integrity, ethics compliance, and transparency.
Avon Shareowners Withdraw Two Resolutions Before Annual Meeting (05/05)
Avon agreed to hold annual board of director elections and to phase out phthalates from its products, prompting shareowners to withdraw their resolutions on these two issues.
Three More Companies Address Climate Risk, So Shareowners Withdraw Resolutions (05/04)
Shareowners withdrew climate change resolutions at Southern Company and TXU, which agreed to issue reports, and at Reliant, which agreed to expand disclosure.
Jewish Institutional Investors Form Shareholder Engagement Network (04/30)
The Jewish Shareholder Engagement Network is based on the notion that Jewish tradition supports such shareowner action as active proxy voting and dialogue with companies.
First-Year Resolution on HIV/AIDS Garners Significant Support at Pharmaceuticals (04/29)
The HIV/AIDS pandemic threatens human life and shareowner value, according to a shareowner resolution filed at companies in the pharmaceutical, oil, and beverage sectors.
Sustainability Report Awards Reward Disclosure on Environmental, Social Performance (04/28)
Canada-based Suncor and Dofasco, Texas-based Dell and Kinko's, and Michigan-based Ford win sustainability reporting awards from CERES and ACCA.
The Diversity of Diversity Best Performance Rankings (04/27)
A comparison of the DiversityInc list of the top 50 companies for diversity and a report from Diversity Best Practice and Business Women's Network that reviews 45 such lists.
Community Foundations and Community Investment: An Obvious But Underused Link (04/23)
The Vermont Community Foundation recently broke new ground by launching a first-of-its-kind community investment program with the support of the Calvert Foundation.
Forget Sit Ins: Student Activists Now Promote Socially Responsible Investment (04/22)
Students and alumni from 22 prestigious colleges and universities launch the Responsible Endowment Coalition to urge schools to practice socially responsible investing.
Tyco Recommends Vote in Favor of Shareowner Resolution, Joining Three Others (04/21)
While companies routinely recommend voting against shareowner resolutions, four companies so far this proxy season have bucked this standard approach.
Women Directors Rare Even in Developed Economies, According to First Global Study (04/20)
A UK-based socially responsible investment research firm study of companies in global developed economies finds only seven percent of board seats occupied by women.
Thirteen Pension Funds Call on SEC to Require Disclosure on Climate Change Risk (04/16)
Institutional investors ask the Securities and Exchange Commission to issue a clarification that climate change is a material risk which must be disclosed in filings.
Oekom Rates Food and Beverages Industry Average in Sustainability Performance (04/15)
The example of Starbucks illustrates how Oekom Research rates food and beverage companies as average performers in social and environmental sustainability.
Stock Option Dilution Rose But Granting Slowed in 2003, Anticipating Mandatory Expensing (04/14)
Right after the Financial Accounting Standards Board called for mandatory option expensing, the Investor Responsibility Research Center released its yearly dilution study.
Social and Environmental Best Practice Linked to Financial Outperformance in Electric Sector (04/08)
Innovest releases another sector report correlating progressive social, environmental, and governance practices and policies with financial outperformance.
Socially Responsible Investment Runs the Gamut on Animal Welfare and Testing (04/07)
Investors who prioritize respect for animals have a range of options, from funds that use shareowner action alone to specialty SRI firms with stringent animal welfare screens.
Nuke Producer GE Energy Buys Solar Producer AstroPower (04/06)
The GE Energy buyout of AstroPower represents a Catch 22 for social investors, who generally seek to support renewable energy but screen GE for its nuclear production.
Diversifying Asset Allocation in Socially Responsible Individual Retirement Accounts (04/05)
Diversifying in SRI IRAs can be challenging, as asset allocation in retirement accounts has few steadfast guidelines.
Into Africa: The Paradox of Socially Responsible Investing in the Developing Continent (04/01)
To support sustainability in Africa, social investors can invest directly outside the SRI community, or else they can pursue community investment and shareowner action.
Wisconsin Energy Reaps External and Internal Benefits from Social and Environmental Reporting (03/31)
Wisconsin Energy won accolades for its Global Reporting Initiative-based report, which also raised internal awareness of social and environmental performance.
A Passage to India: Report Asks If BT Offshoring Is Socially Responsible (03/30)
A recent report by SustainAbility assesses whether offshoring and corporate social responsibility are compatible, focusing on the case of British Telecom.
Philips Extends Sustainability Expectations to Suppliers, Including Child Labor Ban (03/29)
In its 2003 Sustainability Report, Philips Electronics introduced provisions requiring its 50,000 suppliers worldwide to practice social and environmental sustainability.
Business Group Links Social and Environmental Performance with Shareowner Value (03/25)
A recent Global Environmental Management Initiative report adds to the growing body of evidence correlating social and environmental performance with shareowner value.
Social Investors Urge World Bank to Adopt Extractive Industries Review Proposals (03/23)
If adopted by the World Bank, EIR recommendations could serve as a social and environmental best practice benchmark for oil, gas, and mining companies.
Corporate Social and Environmental Performance Varies Widely Across Far-East Asia (03/19)
A Kingsway survey finds differences in cultural norms and government policies in East Asian countries dictate diverse corporate social and environmental performance.
Starbucks Provides Loan Capital for Coffee Farmers (03/16)
Starbucks is providing a $1 million loan to the Calvert Foundation to support microfinance to Latin American coffee farmers, and it answers critics of its Fair Trade commitment.
Corporate Responsibility Index Launched in Australia (03/12)
A coalition of nonprofit, media, and accounting organizations recently introduced the first index to measure corporate social responsibility in Australia.
Disney Vote and California Bill May Affect SEC Shareowner Director Nomination Rule (03/10)
The significant withhold vote at Disney and a bill being considered by the California State Legislature may have a bearing on the SEC's proposed rule on shareowner director nominations.
Report on SRI Research Organizations Characterized as Valuable But Also Controversial (03/09)
A recent report from SustainAbility, onValues, and Mistra provides valuable insight on SRI research organization methodologies but lacks some needed transparency.
Welcome to the Jungle: CSR Questionnaire Incompatibility Hampers Applicability (03/05)
A Nordic Partnership report finds wide variance in questions posed in corporate social responsibility surveys, calling into question their comparability and applicability.
Report Urges Foundations to Vote Their Proxies (03/04)
Surprisingly few foundations regularly vote their proxies, according to a new report written by the As You Sow Foundation, an advocate of active proxy voting.
Students Call for More Disclosure on University Hedge Fund Investments (03/03)
Frustrated by the opacity of universities' hedge fund investments in terms of their social and environmental impacts, students request dialogue with hedge fund firm.
Piper Jaffray Consulting Division Marries Best Asset Managers with Customized Social Screening (03/02)
Socially responsible investment consultant can apply social screens to best asset managers, even if they do not usually practice SRI.
Critics Challenge Christian Aid Report as Biased, Cynical, and Inaccurate (02/27)
Part two of this two-part article considers defenses of corporate social responsibility against attack by a recent Christian Aid report.
Report Favors International Regulation Over Voluntary Corporate Social Responsibility (02/26)
A recent report by Christian Aid argues against the voluntary aspect of CSR and for international regulation. Part one of this two-part article discusses support for the report; part two presents criticism of the report.
Moving From the Business Case for SRI and CSR to the Fiduciary Case (02/19)
The business case for socially responsible investing and corporate social responsibility may not drive individual investors, but the fiduciary case engages institutional investors.
Cintas Defamation Suit Challenges Shareowner Free Speech Rights (02/10)
Cintas files a defamation lawsuit against Tim Smith of Walden Asset Management for alleging that the company uses sweatshop labor in Haiti.
ExxonMobil Contributed Five Percent of Global Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Last 120 Years (01/30)
Friends of the Earth releases two studies that attribute one twentieth of global climate change to ExxonMobil. The company questions these findings, as it questions climate change.
French SRI Assets and Funds Grow in 2003 (01/29)
Novethic documents growth in the number of socially responsible investing funds available in France, as well as the amount of SRI assets under management.
Study Dissects SRI Performance by Different Social and Environmental Factors (01/28)
A Pictet study correlates financial performance with specific aspects of socially responsible investment, such as corporate governance and stakeholder relations.
Restatements of Annual Filings Continue to Rise (01/27)
While restatements of annual filings are still increasing, overall restatements, including quarterlies, are starting to taper off, according a summary report by Huron Consulting.
Community Investment Advocates Question Bank of America/FleetBoston Merger (01/23)
Bank of America is responding to critics of its proposed merger with FleetBoston.
Sarbanes-Oxley Fails to Kill Corporate Insider Loans, Some of Which Pay Posthumously (01/21)
A new study from The Corporate Library documents the prevalence of insider loans, and the persistence of benefits beyond the grave.
The Rashomon Effect: Why Do Innovest and Oekom Rate Toyota's Environmental Performance So Differently? (01/20)
A Japanese film may help investors understand the discrepancy between the environmental ratings of Toyota by Innovest and Oekom.
Gazing in the Crystal Ball: 2004 Preview of Socially Responsible Investing Performance (01/16)
An overview of the trends that may affect SRI performance in the year ahead, among other issues to mull over when considering socially responsible investment.
SRI Domestic Equity Funds Edged Out By Their Non-SRI Counterparts in 2003 (01/15)
Socially responsible investment domestic equity mutual funds slightly lagged their non-SRI counterparts, while the Calvert Social Index outpaced the S&P 500 for the year.
World Economic Forum Survey Projects Mainstreaming of Corporate Citizenship (01/13)
The report credits socially responsible investing, among other trends, for influencing mainstream investors to take corporate citizenship more seriously.
Robert Zevin, a Father of Socially Responsible Investing (01/09)
Robert Zevin helped establish socially responsible investing by fusing traditional investment theory with social justice advocacy, among many other achievements.
Shareowner Resolution Calls Costco on Cultural Crimes in Mexican Site Development (01/08)
Shareowners express concern that Costco, which demolished a culturally significant site in Mexico to build a store, may be demolishing its reputation in the process.
Film Depicts Environmental and Social Reporting Disappearing in SEC Black Hole (01/07)
A documentary film by environmental attorney Sanford Lewis reveals the SEC's failure to enforce its rules requiring companies to disclose environmental and social liabilities.
Many Companies Cannot Verify Whether Their Palm Oil Is Produced Sustainably (01/06)
An ISIS Asset Management report finds that few companies can trace the source of their palm oil up their supply chain to confirm whether or not it is produced sustainably.
The Evolution of Business for Social Responsibility: A Talk with BSR CEO Robert Dunn (12/30)
In a SocialFunds interview, Business for Social Responsibility CEO Robert Dunn discusses how BSR has evolved while CSR has matured over the past decade.
Underreporting of Material Environmental Liabilities Persists (12/23)
Despite clear documentation of the problem, multiple solutions proposed, and petitioning to enhance enforcement, corporate underreporting of material environmental liabilities continues.
Top Five Social Investing News Stories of 2003 (12/19)
The major social investing news stories of the year include SEC reforms, stock exchanges mandating social, environmental, and corporate governance practices, and climate risk assessment defined as a fiduciary duty.
2004 Proxy Season Glimpse: HIV/AIDS Shareowner Campaign Shifts from Conflict to Collaboration (12/18)
The 2004 proxy season has commenced with an instance of cooperation between a company and its shareowners (Part two of a two-part article.)
2003 Proxy Season Roundup: Shareowner Action Success Measured On and Off the Record (12/17)
While the 2003 proxy season produced some impressive numbers, shareowner advocates also define success in ways that are not easily quantifiable (Part one of a two-part article.)
Board Pay, Board Say (12/16)
Two new reports assess the past year for directors of corporate boards, examining issues such as director pay, workload, and independence.
Women Sit in Less Than a Seventh of Fortune 500 Board of Director Seats (12/11)
According to a new Catalyst report, women will inhabit less than a quarter of Fortune 500 board director seats by 2023, though regulations and shareowner action may change this.
Morgan Stanley Study Correlates Sustainability with Financial Outperformance (12/05)
Morgan Stanley's joint study with Oekom Research finds that sustainability leaders in the MCSI World Index financially outperformed sustainability laggards over the past four years.
From Pallet Shacks to Cinderblock Homes: Microfinance Loans on the Mexican Border (12/04)
CHF/Mexico addresses an acute housing shortage by providing technical assistance and affordable loans to low-income families.
Book Review--The Sustainable Company: How to Create Lasting Value Through Social And Environmental Performance (12/02)
A new book makes the business case as well as the moral case for sustainability through socially and environmentally responsible business practices.
UN Institutional Investor Summit Considers Opportunities of Addressing Climate Change (11/26)
Institutional investors make the business case and investment case for assessing, reporting, and mitigating climate change in a summit at the UN (part two of a two-part article).
Institutional Investors Send Wall Street Wake-Up Call to Address Climate Risk (11/25)
At a UN Summit, state treasurers and other institutional investors issue a ten-point call for action for companies, investment analysts, and fiduciaries to address climate risk (part one of a two-part article).
Carmakers and Carbon Constraints: Who Will Capitalize and Who Will Cave? (11/20)
A new report assesses ten auto companies’ relative readiness for reduced carbon emissions and increased fuel efficiency regulations in Japan, the EU, and the US.
Australian SRI Funds Outperform Their Benchmark Over the Short- and Long-Term (11/19)
A new AMP Henderson report finds Australian socially responsible investing outperforms the S&P/ASX 200 over one-, two-, three-, and five-year periods.
Johannesburg Securities Exchange to Introduce Socially Responsible Investing Index (11/18)
In addition to requiring listed companies to comply with King II codes, JSE is also launching an SRI index based on triple bottom line and corporate governance practices.
Survey Says: NGOs Believe Corporate Social Responsibility Reports That Reveal Faults (11/14)
In a recent survey, nongovernmental organizations say they believe CSR reports that disclose noncompliance, poor social or environmental performance, and big challenges.
Socially Responsible Investments Remain Largely Untouched by Late Trading Scandals (11/13)
The SRI industry's long-term investment horizons and ethical underpinnings insulate it from the market timing debacle, though it may be impossible to escape all its effects.
Innovest’s Eco-Enhanced Portfolios Outperform Their Benchmarks (11/12)
Contra Costa County Employees’ Retirement Association achieves both actual and simulated out-performance by tilting its portfolios using Innovest’s EcoValue21 ratings.
As, Bs, and Cs: New Rating Tool Grades Community Development Financial Institutions (11/11)
The National Community Capital Association launches CARS: the CDFI Assessment and Ratings System.
British American Tobacco Reluctantly Exits Myanmar (11/07)
Bowing to pressure from activists and the UK government, BAT sold its interest in its Myanmar operation, though it will continue to license its cigarette brands there.
European Socially Responsible Investment Retail Funds Increase in Number, Decrease in Assets (11/06)
A recent study reports that the number of European SRI retail mutual funds increased since the end of 2001 while the amounts of assets held by them decreased.
Moskowitz Prize-Winning Study Correlates Lower Corruption With Higher Shareowner Value (10/31)
The Social Investment Forum awards its annual Moskowitz Prize to a study that correlates lower political corruption with higher corporate value in international markets.
Emerging Markets Represent Underdeveloped Opportunities for SRI, Study Says (10/30)
An International Finance Corporation report on socially responsible investing in emerging markets finds obstacles and opportunities.
SRI Short Selling: an Oxymoron, or Mutually Reinforcing Strategies? (10/29)
Socially responsible investing strategies rarely include short selling, though this tactic may in fact eclipse other SRI strategies in its ability to effect change.
Coordinate US Corporate Social Responsibility Policy, Kenan Institute Study Group Says (10/28)
A study group convened by the Kenan Institute recommends synchronizing US public policy on CSR and asking the SEC to consider requiring triple bottom line reporting.
American Library Association Takes a Pass on Socially Responsible Investing (10/22)
The ALA recently decided not to employ SRI on its endowment, though it may allow portions of its portfolios to be invested in SRI mutual funds.
SRI Growing Amongst European Institutional Investors and in Asian Emerging Markets (10/17)
Two new reports document the status and prospects of sustainable and responsible investment in Asian emerging markets and with European institutional investors.
Give Peace a Chance: Support Women in Business (10/16)
The Business Council for Peace helps women create sustainable businesses by providing the technology for them to train in computer and entrepreneurial skills.
Is Molina Healthcare a Socially Responsible Investment? Don't Ask The Company (10/15)
The president and chairman of Molina Healthcare leaves it up to investors to decide for themselves if the company is a socially responsible investment.
Socially Responsible Investment Through 401k Plans Comes of Age (10/10)
Since the late 1990s, there has been a boom in socially responsible investment through 401k retirement plans.
European Smallcap SRI Index Launches (10/02)
Kempen Capital Management and SNS Asset Management fill a market gap with what they call the first SRI index in the world to focus on small capitalization companies.
Dow, GM, and Johnson & Johnson Lead the Charge to Green Power (09/30)
The 12 members of the Green Power Market Development Group have purchased almost 100 megawatts of green power from renewable resources since last summer.
Sustainable Computer Producers Perform Better than Less Sustainable Counterparts (09/25)
Innovest adds social considerations to its environmental assessment in its recent computer industry report, and sustainability still outperforms business-as-usual.
FTSE4Good Indexes Add Bank of America, Delete Molson and ConocoPhillips (09/19)
As a result of its semiannual review, FTSE4Good adds Bank of America, a company deleted by DJSI, demonstrating yet another distinction between the indexes.
The Implications of the Nike and Kasky Settlement on CSR Reporting (09/18)
Although Nike reached an agreement with Marc Kasky to end his lawsuit, the settlement's effect on corporate social responsibility reporting remains to be seen.
Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes Add Toyota, HP, Eject DaimlerChrysler, Bank of America (09/11)
After its annual review, DJSI adds companies it deems as having strong sustainability performance to its index universe, and deletes companies that lag in sustainability practice.
Influential Institutional Investors to Form National Coalition for Corporate Reform (09/10)
The National Coalition for Corporate Reform, championed by state treasurers and pension funds, seeks to restore investor confidence through better corporate governance.
Community Investment Bond Helps House the Learning Disabled in the UK (09/09)
The UK arm of Triodos Bank issues a bond that supports Golden Lane Housing, a UK charity that provides housing to people with learning disabilities.
New Proxy Voting Recommendation Service Provides Choice, Objectivity (09/05)
Investor Responsibility Research Center teams with Glass, Lewis & Co. to provide proxy voting recommendations and voting services to institutional investors.
Environmental Best Practice Tied to Financial Outperformance in Food Retail Industry (09/03)
Innovest's latest report shows that environmental leaders in the global food and drug sector financially outperform the sector's environmental laggards.
Morningstar Japan Launches First SRI Index Covering Japanese Market Exclusively (08/28)
The introduction of an socially responsible investing index by Morningstar Japan represents a significant milestone in the development of SRI in Japan.
Quakers and Socially Responsible Investing: A Natural Match (08/27)
The Friends Fiduciary Corporation practices both positive and negative screening, in keeping with Quaker values that prioritize social justice and non-violence.
UN to Hold Corporations More Responsible for Human Rights and the Environment (08/26)
A UN sub-commission adopted a resolution calling for transnational corporations to be held more accountable for human rights protection and environmental stewardship.
Will Ford's Transparency Affect Its Performance? (08/13)
While lauding the transparency of Ford's 2002 Corporate Citizenship Report, analysts caution that it remains to be seen whether such reports and the Global Reporting Initiative reporting guidelines will help improve corporate performance (part two of a two-part article).
Report Finds Oil Companies' Social and Environmental Practices Unsustainable (08/07)
Oekom Research's report criticizes the oil industry's uneven progress in sustainable development, but those in the industry question the report's findings.
The Needmor Fund Utilizes a Muscular Definition of Fiduciary Responsibility (08/05)
Susan Stranahan, treasurer of the Needmor Fund, discusses socially responsible investing as a fiduciary duty and tier A money managers who have a social mission.
Critics Find Study of SRI Underperformance Fundamentally Flawed (08/01)
A recent Wharton School study that finds underperformance by socially responsible investment mutual funds is based on an unsound research design, according to critics.
The ABCs of SRI Mutual Fund Share Classes (07/30)
The complexities of different share classes, or fund loads, can confuse investors--brokers and finance writers can either help clarify and further obfuscate.
Survey Finds SRI Fund Managers See Bright Future in Europe (07/25)
A recent survey of fund managers conducted by UK Social Investment Forum and Thomson Extel reveals high expectations for significant SRI growth in Europe. Those surveyed also ranked top SRI firms and analysts.
ACCION Creates Self-Sufficiency by Providing Microfinance to Microenterprises (07/24)
Social investors can support ACCION's international and national microlending initiatives, which seek to break the cycle of poverty through several mechanisms.
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.
SEC Report on Shareowner Nomination of Directors Opens Some Doors, But May Close Others (07/18)
A recent SEC report recommends several solutions for allowing shareowners access to director nominations, but social investors worry it may not solve some problems.
Johannesburg Securities Exchange Requires Compliance with King II and Global Reporting Initiative (07/16)
Companies listed on the Johannesburg Securities Exchange will soon have to comply with King II corporate governance codes as well as Global Reporting Initiative guidelines.
First Steps for the U.S. Business Council for Sustainable Development (07/15)
Carlos Guimaraes, chair of the U.S. Business Council for Sustainable Development, speaks about the new organization's strong membership, partnerships, and projects.
Members of Congress Consider Social and Environmental Disclosure in SEC Filings (07/11)
A group of Senators and Representatives summoned a symposium on the need for social and environmental disclosure by companies in their SEC filings.
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.
Sustainability Leaders in Food Sector Produce Healthy Returns (07/09)
Innovest finds that global food products companies with higher sustainability ratings perform better financially than companies with weaker environmental performance.
Eurosif Releases Transparency Guidelines for European SRI Funds (07/08)
Eurosif asks socially responsible investment firms to disclose their policies and procedures around SRI issues.
Summer Reading List, SRI-Style (07/02)
Prominent figures in the socially responsible investing community recommend SRI- and CSR-related books, and as well as some great titles from outside the field.
Pension Funds and Mutual Funds Influence Their Holdings Differently (07/01)
Academic studies discern between how pension funds and mutual funds wield influence as institutional shareowners, but the studies lack methods sophisticated enough to evaluate the effects of SRI.
McDonald's Phases Out Animal Growth Promotion Antibiotics from Global Supply Chain (06/27)
McDonald's, which is often the first in its sector to introduce sustainable practices, will end use of animal growth promotion antibiotics, but does this make the company socially responsible?
U.S. Drops in Country Sustainability Ratings (06/26)
The United States fell eight places in Oekom Research's Country Rating Report this year, mirroring its poor performance on other similar country sustainability ratings.
Apria Democratizes Director Elections (06/24)
Apria Healthcare Group set a precedent as the first company to allow shareowners to nominate candidates for board of director elections.
Attitudes and Actions Behind the Growth of SRI in Japan (06/20)
Alongside the highly visible events that demonstrate the spread of socially responsible investing in Japan are shifting attitudes and less visible actions (part two of a two-part article).
The Sun is Rising on SRI in Japan (06/19)
A major Tokyo public pension fund commits to socially responsible investing, an indication of Japan's growing interest in SRI (part one of a two-part article.)
Investors Managing $3 Trillion Back Blair's Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (06/18)
Developing countries are being prodded to support oil and mining companies disclosure of payments the companies make to governments.
First Dutch Passively-Managed DJSI-based Index Fund Launched (06/17)
Theodoor Gilissen Bankiers has launched a passively-managed fund that tracks a Dow Jones Sustainability Index, the first such product in the Netherlands.
IRRC Platform Combines Corporate Governance and Social Responsibility Research (06/12)
The Investor Responsibility Research Center merges its corporate governance research tool with its social responsibility research tool in a web-based platform.
Will Equator Principles Deliver Social and Environmental Responsibility from Banks? (06/05)
Social investors and NGOs question whether the Equator Principles will serve their stated purpose of increasing global banks' social and environmental responsibility.
Nike and Others Increase Transparency into Their Global Labor Practices (06/04)
The Fair Labor Association releases a report today on the internal and independent external monitoring of apparel and footwear manufacturers' global labor practices.
FedEx and UPS Green Up Their Fleets With Hybrid Electric and Fuel Cell Vehicles (06/03)
FedEx introduces hybrid electric delivery vehicles, while UPS is investing in fuel cell technology.
World's Largest Coffee Traders Agree to Sustainability, but How Committed Are They? (05/30)
Rainforest Alliance's recent agreement on sustainability with the world's two largest coffee traders holds promise but the devil may be in the details.
Religious Institutions Issue Benchmarks for Corporate Social Responsibility Performance (05/28)
A global coalition of religious activists have published the third edition of a comprehensive set of guidelines for corporate social and environmental performance.
Blacklisting, Voicetracking, and Payola: Clear Channel and the Effects of Media Consolidation (05/23)
Shareowner activists ask Clear Channel to ban blacklisting, while musicians and other activists oppose FCC plans to deregulate media industries.
Corporate America Less than Halfway to Gender Parity (05/22)
A Conference Board report documents the evident and the less-apparent obstacles to achieving male-female equality in the workplace.
Socially Responsible Investing in 529 Funds Requires Some Savvy (05/16)
There are now three SRI options for 529 college savings plans, though ascertaining how best to save for college in a socially responsible way may require professional advice.
Report Asks When ExxonMobil Will Wake Up to Climate-Related Risks (05/15)
For the second year in a row, a report tells ExxonMobil shareowners to beware of the significant risks the company faces in terms of how the oil giant addresses climate change.
Do UK Charities' Investments Reflect Their Mission Statements? (05/14)
A report released today reveals that the majority of large UK charities do not practice socially responsible investing.
The Switch to Socially Responsible Investing Affords Choice and Confers Power (05/05)
The continuation of one investor's story of how he chose SRI mutual funds, and his reflections on the power of socially responsible investing (part two of a two-part article).
The Benefits and Obstacles of Switching to Socially Responsible Investing (05/02)
One investor's story of the process of shifting mainstream investments into socially responsible investment mutual funds (part one of a two-part article).
Innovest Report Identifies Business Risk of Genetic Engineering for Monsanto Investors (05/01)
The controversy surrounding genetic engineering creates substantial risks to shareowner value at Monsanto, according to a new report from Innovest.
Simulated Institutional SRI Portfolios Continue to Outperform Benchmarks (04/30)
Institutional investors take note: four out of five mock portfolios in the Triple Bottom Line Simulation performed better than their benchmarks over the last three quarters
Ford and Fannie Mae Top List of 50 Best Companies for Diversity (04/24)
DiversityInc's new corporate survey strives to identify the business value of diversity.
Is Nike Guaranteed Free Speech? The Supreme Court Will Decide (04/23)
Advocates of socially responsible investment and corporate social responsibility on both sides of the Atlantic weigh in on the implications of Nike's Supreme Court case.
Earth Day Founder Not the Only One to Link Climate Change and Investing (04/22)
The voices of institutional investors representing public pension funds join those from the insurance industry to advance a business case for addressing climate change.
The Effects of 9/11 and the Iraq War on Islamic SRI Funds (04/18)
Socially responsible investment funds that reflect Islamic values shed light on the issue of anti-Islam sentiment, which has run rampant after 9/11 and through the Iraq War.
Is the Sun Setting on AstroPower? (04/17)
Once the darling of the green investors, AstroPower's share price has plummeted precipitously over the past year.
Back in the U.S.A. (04/15)
A combination of investors, activists, and congresspeople are working to make sure U.S. companies keep paying their share of taxes.
Pay Dirt or Payola? How Halliburton Strikes it Rich (04/11)
A number of practices have generated profits as well as controversy for Halliburton, the company where Vice President Dick Cheney served six years as CEO.
Rebuilding Iraq: Humanitarianism Versus Opportunism (04/04)
Socially responsible investing supports companies and nonprofit initiatives that advance humanitarian efforts to rebuild Iraq and avoids investment in profiteering companies.
Socially Responsible Investment Firms Respond to New War with Tried and True Tactics (03/28)
SRI firms are sticking with their traditional strategies, such as screening, community investment, and support for humanitarian aid, in response to war.
AccountAbility Launches Assurance Standard for Corporate Responsibility Reporting (03/26)
Investors and other stakeholders stand to benefit from the standardized verification of corporate reporting on social, environmental, and economic performance.
Guide Rates Best and Worst Lenders in Terms of Reaching the Underserved (03/25)
When it comes to reaching minorities, women, and low- and middle-income borrowers, Bank of America rates as one of the best and ABN AMRO rates as one of the worst.
Watching the Public Company Accounting Watchdog (03/21)
The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board Association is slowly getting to work and it will be scrutinized by the newly-formed Association for Integrity in Accounting.
CEOs Advocate Economic, Environmental, and Social Sustainability at Conference (03/19)
The Forum for Corporate Conscience calls on CEOs and corporations to promote triple bottom line performance.
Oekom Applauds Insurers Employing SRI but Chides Rest of Sector's Non-Transparency (03/18)
Lack of transparency prevented the German corporate research firm from conducting corporate responsibility ratings on the majority of global insurance companies.
New UK Index Rates Corporate Social Responsibility Performance (03/13)
UK-based Business in the Community launches its Corporate Responsibility Index, which benchmarks corporate social responsibility performance.
Mutual Fund Industry Takes Last Stab at Blocking Proxy Voting Disclosure (03/12)
The Investment Company Institute, the mutual fund industry trade group, continues to lobby against new SEC rules that require disclosure of proxy voting policies and records.
Investing in Wind Energy Is Not a Breeze (03/07)
With few pure players in the domestic wind energy sector, investors who want exposure to wind energy must commit their money overseas.
Individual Retirement Accounts Meet Socially Responsible Investing (03/06)
IRAs that employ socially responsible investing strategies can help create a more secure financial, social, and environmental future.
Congress Cuts Funding for New Markets Venture Capital Program (03/05)
The New Markets Venture Capital program, which provides entrepreneurial expertise and equity capital to small businesses in low-income regions, received the Congressional ax.
International Right to Know Campaign Promotes Disclosure of Global Corporate Impacts (02/27)
In a recent report, the International Right to Know Campaign outlines the benefits of corporate disclosure of global environmental and social policies and practices.
SRI Issues Will Impact Companies' Financial Performance, UK Pension Fund Trustees Say (02/25)
A recent survey finds that pension fund trustees in the United Kingdom view socially responsible investing (SRI) issues as linked to companies' future financial performance.
Corporate Social Responsibility Rating Agencies Balance Standardization and Differentiation (02/12)
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) rating agencies are struggling to balance the need to standardize CSR ratings with the need to differentiate their ratings from competitors'.
Prince Albert of Monaco Helps Launch a New Sustainability Fund (02/07)
Instead of investing directly in equities, this new "fund of funds" from Monaco invests in SRI and sustainability funds.
World Economic Forum Surveys CEO Attitudes Toward Corporate Citizenship (02/06)
The World Economic Forum CEO survey finds much enthusiasm but less substance in the adaptation of corporate social responsibility into core business activities.
CSRwire Spreads the Word on Corporate Social Responsibility (01/31)
Companies, nonprofits, and other organizations use CSRwire to distribute corporate social responsibility-related press releases and corporate performance reports.
Europe's Largest Pension Fund Buys a Minority Stake in SRI Research Firm (01/29)
ABP and State Street Global Alliance have invested in Innovest, another indication that mainstream investors are seeing the benefit of implementing SRI strategies.
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.
Corporate Responsibility Ratings and SRI Screens Sometimes Differ (01/16)
A new report from Oekom Research criticizes IT network and component company performance based on the companies' own disclosure, while the Calvert Group's screens assess companies' actual practices.
Sierra Club Launches SRI Mutual Funds (01/15)
The Sierra Club is harnessing its name recognition and expertise on corporate environmental performance with its launching of an SRI equity mutual fund and an SRI balanced mutual fund.
Top Five Social Investing News Stories of 2002 (01/14)
The major social investing news stories of the year include significant corporate governance reforms and the success of community investment.
Low-Income Toronto Residents Save on Check Cashing (01/10)
Royal Bank of Canada tailored its Cash & Save concept to meet the unique financial services needs of residents in a diverse, densely populated urban community.
Australia To Require Investment Firms to Disclose How They Take SRI into Account (01/03)
A 2002 Australian law that requires all investment firms to disclose how they take socially responsible investment issues into consideration will take effect in March 2003.
NEC Pioneers "Green" Computer (01/02)
NEC reverses the computer industry's foot-dragging on addressing environmental liabilities by introducing the PowerMate eco, the first eco-efficient computer.
A Tribute to Chuck Matthei, Community Investing Trailblazer (12/24)
At a time of year when many people give thanks for their gifts, the SRI community continues to reflect on Chuck Matthei's numerous contributions to community investing.
Social Investment Forum Outlines "Next Wave" of Corporate Governance Reforms (12/20)
Additional reforms besides those already on the table will be necessary to create meaningful corporate governance reforms, according to the U.S. Social Investment Forum.
Humans' Overuse of Earth's Resources Exceeds Sustainability by 20 Percent (12/11)
A new report on the ecological footprints of 146 nations documents unsustainable consumption, a phenomenon that, unchecked, will deplete the world's natural resources.
SRI Gains Momentum in University and College Endowment Investments (12/04)
U.S. academic institutions are increasingly applying socially responsible investment principles, although not comprehensively.
Moskowitz Prize Pays Tribute to Evidence of SRI Funds' Competitive Performance (12/03)
A Dutch paper documenting no significant difference between returns from SRI funds and conventional mutual funds wins this year's coveted Moskowitz Prize.
CSR Matrix Plots Socially Responsible Business Initiatives Throughout Europe (11/26)
A new report surveys the status of corporate social responsibility in Europe, representing CSR initiatives graphically with a CSR Matrix.
The Ethical Investment Group, Canada's Socially Responsible Investment Club (11/25)
Initially spurred by a popular trend in the 1990's, a Montreal-based investment club continues its commitment to socially responsible investment.
SRI Firms Caution Against a Wimpy Accounting Oversight Board (11/22)
Despite the distractions of the current Accounting Oversight Board debacle, SRI firms focus on what policies the board could adopt to support social and environmental issues.
Talisman Leaves Sudan But Remains on Social Investment Nix List (11/19)
Canadian SRI rating agency recommends investors continue to avoid investment in Talisman due to ongoing human rights and environmental concerns.
The Complexities of Venture Capital Investment Disclosure (11/14)
The University of Texas' disclosure of information on its venture capital investments creates challenges for venture capital firms and institutional investors.
DJSI and FTSE4Good Index Licensing Continues to Expand (11/08)
Index-based separate accounts, certificates, and exchange-traded funds are among the products being created based on these European SRI indexes.
GAO Report Says Financial Restatements Cost Investors Billions (11/06)
The ravaging effects of financial restatements, which have been on the rise since 1997, are documented in a recent General Accounting Office report.
Connecticut Initiative Promotes a Better Bottom Line Through Diverse Boards (11/05)
The Connecticut Board Diversity Initiative cites academic research to document the positive financial value of diverse boards of directors, in addition to their social value.
Oekom Pans Telecoms' Social and Environmental Performance (11/01)
A recent report from the German research firm concludes that only a handful of telecommunications companies have above average social and environmental practices.
Nike Greenwash Decision a Double-Edged Sword (10/31)
While some cheer the California Supreme Court ruling against Nike as a victory for truth in advertising, others consider it a potential defeat for CSR reporting and increased corporate transparency.
Corporate Governance Now Rated by Mainstream Investment Research Firms (10/25)
Mainstream investment research firms are now evaluating corporate governance as a potential indicator of stock valuation.
Eco-Efficient Real Estate and Retail Food Stocks Outperform Environmental Laggards (10/24)
Two recent Innovest reports correlate strong energy management, particularly participation in the EPA ENERGY STAR program, with superior stock performance.
Board of Directors Survey Reveals Progress and Gaps in Corporate Governance (10/18)
A recent survey of board directors at Fortune 1000 companies found improvement in some areas, but also identified areas in need of improvement.
UNEP Advises Financial Sector on Threats and Opportunities Related to Climate Change (10/17)
A recent United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative report outlines the financial sector's risks and opportunities regarding climate change.
Screening the Gambling Sector from High Yield Investments Can Be Tricky (10/16)
Screening out gaming sector investments from high yield portfolios presents challenges, including identifying private gaming companies and controlling tracking errors.
SRI Ratings Need Greater Independence and Standardization, Says New Dutch Guide (10/15)
A new guide from Holland profiles 28 SRI rating agencies from around the world and recommends greater independence, standardization, and transparency in SRI research.
SRI Community Reaps Success in Washington (10/09)
Recent proposals from the SRI community enacted as public policy are creating momentum toward more potential legislation and regulations that support SRI goals.
The Strengths and Inadequacies of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (09/27)
Social and mainstream investors alike applaud the positive reforms instituted by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, but also point to additional reforms needed to clean up the markets.
Survey Reveals High Investor Interest in Socially Responsible Investing (09/23)
A recent Harris Interactive poll commissioned by the Calvert Group shows investor interest in SRI, particularly in retirement plans.
SEC Proposal Would Require Mutual Fund Companies to Disclose Proxy Voting (09/20)
The Securities and Exchange Commission proposed rules requiring all mutual fund companies and investment advisers to disclose proxy voting guidelines and votes.
Achieve SRI Objectives While Deferring Taxes with Variable Annuities (09/19)
Variable annuity subaccounts allow social investors with a very specific profile to apply SRI strategies and receive tax benefits simultaneously.
Religious Mutual Funds Multiply in Numbers and Assets (09/18)
Faith-based mutual funds represent a fledgling but fast-growing movement in the socially responsible investment field.
Hazardous Waste as Fuel: Conservation or Corporate Irresponsibility? (09/11)
The cement industry calls the use of hazardous waste to fuel cement kilns recycling while critics of the practice call it dangerous.
Using Portfolio Theory to Manage Biodiversity More Prudently (09/10)
A recent report proposes to improve biodiversity management by applying the portfolio method, which values diversification.
Rio + 10 Series: U.S. Company Receives World Summit Award for Sustainable Development Partnerships (09/06)
ForesTrade, which markets organic spices and fair trade coffee, was the sole U.S. company to win a Sustainable Development Partnerships Award at the Johannesburg Summit.
Shifting the Sustainability Dialogue from Values to Value (09/04)
A recent Ecos Corporation discussion paper advocates integrating the social and environmental considerations of sustainability into the financial bottom line.
Institutional Investors Are Slow to Apply SRI to Fixed Income (09/03)
While many institutional investors apply SRI strategies to the equity portion of their portfolios, they are leaving their income investments relatively untouched.
Rio + 10 Series: The Johannesburg Summit Differs from Its Predecessor (08/30)
Five days into the World Summit on Sustainable Development, participants remark how the conference is different than the 1992 Rio Earth Summit.
Four New Indexes Track Best Practice Companies (08/27)
The Ethibel Sustainability Indexes apply positive screens for sustainable development and stakeholder involvement.
Rio + 10 Series: The Rhetoric of the World Summit on Sustainable Development (08/23)
Sustainable development's amorphous definition may prove a difficult hurdle to gaining consensus on concrete action plans at the Johannesburg Summit.
SEC Urged to Strengthen Rules Governing Corporate Disclosure of Environmental Risks (08/21)
The Rose Foundation is petitioning the SEC to require more comprehensive disclosure of environmental liabilities, allowing investors to assess the potential effect on shareowner value.
New Tool Quantifies Corporate Environmental Performance (08/20)
London-based TruCost launched a single-framework rating tool that allows for a quantitative comparison of companies' environmental performance.
Rio + 10 Series: SRI Contributions to the Earth Summits Blocked from Within and Without (08/16)
The fact that the global socially responsible investment community was denied a greater voice at the Rio Summit does not excuse its low participation in the Johannesburg Summit.
Some Cracks in Freddie Mac's Otherwise Solid Social and Fiscal Reputation (08/15)
Freddie Mac's profile appears picture-perfect from a social and fiscal perspective, but recent disclosures have tainted this image somewhat.
Alternative Strategies for the Alternative Energy Sector (08/14)
The recent downturn in alternative energy stocks is not necessarily reason for social investors to abandon the sector altogether.
Rio + 10 Series: Business Action Addressing Biodiversity is a Rare Species (08/09)
The Center for Environmental Leadership in Business’ Energy and Biodiversity Initiative represents one of very few business actions that support biodiversity conservation.
FTSE4Good to Fortify Human Rights Criteria (08/08)
FTSE4Good is conducting market consultation in preparation for strengthening human rights criteria for inclusion in its socially responsible indexes and funds.
Matrix Plots Business Cases for Sustainability in Emerging Markets (08/06)
SustainAbility recently released a report that identifies the business benefits of practicing sustainability in emerging markets.
Rio + 10 Series: The Sustainability of the World Summit on Sustainable Development (08/02)
Organizers are working to reduce the environmental impacts of the Johannesburg Summit.
Conference to Consider the Business Case for SRI (07/29)
Institutional investors will discuss SRI at the Green Mountain SRI Summit, to be held in Stowe, Vermont in September.
Rio + 10 Series: Report Finds Fundamental Flaws in WTO's Agreement on Agriculture (07/26)
An Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy report argues that the Agreement on Agriculture fails to account for agri-business' monopoly over global agricultural trade.
Oil and Gas Company Environmental Risk Should Concern Investors (07/25)
Innovest and the World Resources Institute released reports this week that illustrate how environmental risk can affect the shareowner value of oil and gas companies.
British Law Requiring SRI Reporting by Pension Funds Fails to Generate Best Practice (07/24)
A recently released report identifies gaps between UK pension funds' stated commitment to SRI issues and their actual implementation of SRI practices.
Rio + 10 Series: UNAIDS' Accelerating Access Initiative May Decelerate Access (07/19)
ACT UP Paris criticizes Accelerating Access, a joint United Nations/pharmaceutical industry initiative, for limiting price reduction on AIDS medicine in developing nations.
Supporting Science, Supporting Sustainability (07/18)
Earthwatch Institute's Corporate Fellowship Program places corporate employees in the field with top scientists for the benefit of both the environment and the sponsoring companies.
Rio + 10 Series: Two UNEP Reports Chart Past, Present, and Future Course of Sustainable Development (07/13)
Assessments of the progress since the Rio Summit guide the blueprints for the Johannesburg Summit.
Cement Companies Churn Out Action Plan to Promote Sustainable Development (07/10)
The Cement Sustainability Initiative, a consortium of ten global cement companies, recently released a report outlining specific steps to achieve sustainable development.
Rio + 10 Series: Progress and Regress--Energy Sectors Report on Their Efforts Toward Sustainability (07/05)
Three industry sectors that supply energy--oil and gas, coal, and electricity--reported on their improvements and shortcomings in sustainable development since the Rio Summit.
Eco-Efficient Pharmaceutical Companies Have Higher Share Value (07/03)
Innovest's recent report on the global pharmaceutical sector notes a correlation between strong environmental performance and better stock performance, with some exceptions.
Rio + 10 Series: How the Private Sector Can Help Solve Global Water Problems (06/21)
Solving the world's water problems may depend on properly regulated water privatization and corporate initiatives that introduce new technologies and reduce water consumption.
Rio + 10 Series: A Brief History of the Earth Summits--From Rio to Johannesburg (06/14)
SocialFunds.com presents a historical snapshot of the Rio Summit and surveys some significant developments leading up to the Johannesburg Summit. (the second in a series of articles leading up to the Johannesburg Summit)
New York Stock Exchange Calls for Tighter Corporate Governance Standards (06/12)
At the SEC's request, the New York Stock Exchange drafted recommendations to fortify corporate governance standards and restore investor confidence.
Rio + 10 Series: A Brief History of the Earth Summits--From Stockholm to Rio (06/07)
SocialFunds.com examines the significant events, theories, and people that contributed to the first two global summits on human interaction with the environment. (the first in a series of articles leading up to the Johannesburg Summit.)
New Report Assesses the Status of Corporate Social Responsibility (06/06)
Echo Research reports on how corporate social responsibility is increasingly important for global corporations, and rates how CSR is being incorporated into business practices.
Electronics and Appliances Sector Rated Highly for Environmental Performance (06/04)
German research firm also finds, however, that there is much room for improvement in the sector's social performance.
Labor Law Database Eases Companies' Compliance Efforts (05/30)
A new database service aids corporate compliance teams in gathering information on national and local labor laws.
Journalists List Corporations Found Guilty of Crimes throughout the 1990s (05/29)
A simple list of corporate crimes, presented along with guilty pleas or fine payments, hints at the pervasiveness of poor corporate ethics.
The Matrix: a New Tool for Assessing Corporate Social Responsibility (05/22)
Each of two new initiatives employs a matrix to graphically represent the variables inherent in socially and environmentally responsible corporate practices.
Two Perspectives on the Business Case for Ethical Corporate Behavior (05/17)
Robert Monks defends the business case for corporate ethics against Sir Geoffrey Chandler's recent editorial attacking the business case as amoral.
Occidental Pipeline in Colombia Strikes It Rich in Washington (05/10)
The Bush Administration has proposed $98 million in military aid to protect Occidental's Cano-Limon pipeline in Colombia, despite its environmental and economic liabilities. (part two of a two-part article)
Occidental Returns Siriri Oil Block to Colombia (05/09)
Los Angeles-based Occidental Petroleum withdrew from an oil field belonging to the indigenous U'wa people, but the company will continue oil extraction in Colombia. (part one of a two-part article)
Mining Industry Reports on Its Problems, but Remains Vague on Solutions (05/08)
A new report identifies the global mining industry's social and environmental pitfalls, though its recommendations may prove hollow, according to an industry watchdog.
The Progress and Stagnation of Corporate Social Responsibility in MBA Programs (05/02)
Two recent developments paint different pictures of the current status of corporate social responsibility in MBA programs.
CERES Calls on Institutional Investors and Corporate Directors to Address Global Climate Change Risk (05/01)
A new report from CERES advises institutional investors and corporate directors on the financial risks of global climate change.
New Research Tool Identifies Terrorism Risk in Institutional Investments (04/26)
The Global Security Risk Monitor allows investors to study risks to their investments from companies operating in countries that sponsor terrorism and weapons proliferation.
WILD Awards Reward Socially and Environmentally Responsible Advertising (04/25)
The Third Annual WILD Awards recognized companies, ad agencies, and individuals that support wild animals and nature in their marketing.
Nordic Partnership Signs Sustainability Manifesto in Preparation for Rio + 10 Summit (04/24)
A group of companies from the four Nordic countries convened recently to report on their progress in generating a model for sustainable business development.
Glass Ceilings Harden Instead of Shattering for Women in the U.S. and U.K. (04/19)
Numerous recent studies on both sides of the Atlantic report continuing and even increasing disparity between women's and men's pay and advancement opportunities.
Federal Lawsuit Seeks Slave Reparations from Three Companies (04/18)
African-American attorneys filed a class-action lawsuit against three companies that allegedly profited from slavery, either directly or through acquired companies.
SEC Faltering on Meeting Shareowner Resolution Needs (04/16)
Proposed budget for 2003 may help the SEC provide public information on its no-action letters as well as advise shareowners on resolution changes.
Companies Skirt Disclosure of Environmental Liabilities (04/08)
New study echoes social investors' call for the SEC to strengthen its rules regarding corporate disclosure of environmental liabilities.
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.
Survey Holds Money Managers Accountable (04/02)
A recent AFL-CIO survey may prod money managers to examine their proxy voting on labor issues, but some in the social investment community note that the interests of organized labor and social investors sometimes diverge.
Executives and Analysts Name Most Admired Socially Responsible Companies (03/27)
A recent Fortune magazine survey lists America's most admired companies, with one section of the list devoted to social responsibility.
Millipore Enhances Health Through Its Products, Employment, Environmentalism, and Philanthropy (03/25)
This bioscience company's above-average social and environmental performance sets it apart from competitors.
FTSE4Good Indexes Add Companies After Semi-Annual Review (03/21)
FTSE4Good has significantly expanded its universe of socially responsible companies.
Disney and Intel Clash Over Solution to Digital Piracy (03/20)
Entertainment industry executives called on Congress to enforce a solution to the digital piracy problem, while the technology industry favors market incentives.
Report Diagnoses Ills in the Pharmaceutical Sector (03/19)
A German rating agency reports that many pharmaceutical companies are failing to follow the example of the sector’s leaders in solving environmental and social problems.
New French Law Mandates Corporate Social and Environmental Reporting (03/14)
French social and environmental rating agency offered both kudos and criticism for a new law requiring French companies to disclose social and environmental performance.
Bush Plan on Corporate Responsibility Criticized as Vague, Unenforceable (03/13)
Critics slam President Bush's ten-point plan on corporate responsibility for lacking specifics, penalties, budget support, and consideration of corporate social responsibility.
State Tobacco Settlement Money Being Reinvested in Tobacco Companies (03/11)
States that do not place specific restrictions on investing tobacco settlement money may be investing the funds back into tobacco.
Shell to Stand Trial for 1990s Human Rights Abuses in Nigeria (03/08)
A U.S. Federal Court rejected Shell's plea to dismiss a case charging the company with human rights abuses in Nigeria dating back to 1995.
Which Government Bonds Are Appropriate for Sustainable Investors? (03/04)
Oekom Research recently conducted a study that evaluates the sustainability of governments that issue bonds popular with investors.
CalPERS Divests from Four Emerging Countries (03/01)
California's public pension fund withdrew its equity from four emerging countries in response to a review that considered social and financial factors equally.
Online Communications Specialist Offers New Angle on Corporate Responsibility (02/27)
UK-based consulting firm offers reports that look at how the Internet affects the relationship between companies and their stakeholders.
Mining and Minerals Sector Trying to Clean Up Its Act (02/22)
Large international mining companies, in an effort to improve their image with investors, are working on a project to define how the industry can best contribute to global sustainable development.
Verdict Still Out on Costa Rica Offshore Drilling (02/20)
Although American companies Harken Energy and MKL-Xplorations purchased the rights to drill for oil off the coast of Costa Rica in 1998, drilling has not started as local organizations voice concerns.
Students Compel Williams College to Offer Social Investment Option for Donors (02/14)
Alumni and other donors now can have their endowment contributions invested in a socially responsible manner.
Report Argues that Europe Outperforms the U.S. in Corporate Social Responsibility (02/13)
According to a study recently released by the National Policy Association, the United States has fallen behind Europe in advancing corporate social responsibility.
First Nasdaq-based Social Index Unveiled (02/12)
KLD and Nasdaq create the KLD-Nasdaq Social Index, the first index to screen Nasdaq companies for social and environmental criteria.
Private Equity Investment Puts Yale in Deep Water (02/08)
Yale University's investment in a private water company highlights the difficulty institutional investors have in managing private equity investments that may have little or no transparency.
Swedish Foundation Reports on Socially Responsible Asset Management and Research (02/06)
MISTRA, a Swedish environmental research foundation, recently released a report that assesses asset managers and research firms as its first step toward adopting socially responsible investing principles.
CEOs Worldwide Prioritize Corporate Social Responsibility (02/01)
A survey of CEOs around the globe revealed their appreciation of corporate social responsibility, though they have yet to reach consensus on CSR's definition.
Report Criticizes GM's Poor Fuel Efficiency, Applauds Its Other Environmental Efforts (01/31)
CERES reported on GM's environmental record, praising the majority of the carmaker's initiatives but condemning its failure to improve overall fuel efficiency in its fleet.
Spreading the Word about Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development (01/30)
A new report assesses the role of the media in the growth of corporate social responsibility and sustainable development.
Idiosyncratic Firm Invests Old Money in A New Way (01/17)
Through investments in documentary films, Lowell, Blake & Associates earn a healthy profit for their clients and shows non-profits how to operate within a business model.
Canadian Citizens and Investors Favor Corporate Accountability (01/16)
According to a recent poll, as well as public hearings conducted by a government commission, Canadians largely support corporate social responsibility.
UK Bank Offers Green Mortgages (01/14)
Financial institution efforts to be more environment-friendly are proving popular with customers.
Natural Foods Industry Savors 2001 Performance (01/11)
The natural foods industry defied dire predictions for 2001, demonstrating the commitment of consumers to social and health values over cost
Top Five Social Investing News Stories of 2001 (01/08)
Among the major social investing news stories of the year, social mutual funds continued to bust poor performance myths, and governments and shareowners pushed companies on sustainability and corporate social responsibility issues.
Attractive College Savings Programs Yet to Embrace Socially Responsible Options (01/04)
New regulations shelter certain college savings funds from taxation, but socially responsible investors must petition their states to implement socially responsible options
Harry Potter Hawks Coke, Inciting Ire Amongst Fans and Consumer Advocates Alike (01/03)
Coca-Cola secured global marketing rights to the Harry Potter image, a move more likely to increase obesity than to promote literacy, according to children's health advocates.
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.
Capstone Generates Interest in Microturbines (12/14)
Capstone Turbine Corporation offers environment-friendly alternatives to electricity generation for multiple applications.
Domini Urges SEC to Require Proxy Voting Disclosure (12/13)
In a letter to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission chairman, Domini Social Investments outlines the benefits of mutual fund managers disclosing their proxy voting practices to their investors.
City of London Principles Anticipate Global Summit on Sustainability (12/10)
The UK financial sector is developing sustainable business principles that it hopes can act as a blueprint for similar principles to be created and adopted at the UN's 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development.
Study Correlates Shareowner Rights with Strong Stock Price Performance (12/07)
Through the 1990s, stock in firms that preserved shareowner rights outperformed companies that bolstered management's power, according to an academic paper.
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.
FTSE4Good Adds Final Two Indexes to its Series (11/21)
FTSE launches the FTSE4Good Global Index and the FTSE4Good US Index, the last two in its series of eight indexes covering the performance of companies practicing corporate social responsibility.
The Socratic Method Expands (11/15)
KLD expands the scope of SOCRATES, its database of research reports on issues related to the social and environmental performance of thousands of companies.
Socially Responsible Investing: An Academic Issue? (11/14)
TIAA-CREF opposes enhanced social responsibility for its Social Change Account, despite the fact that the overwhelming majority of the account's investors favor such an initiative.
Activists Dog Animal Research Firm and Its Investors (11/12)
Animal rights proponents protesting European animal research firm Huntingdon Life Sciences have extended their ire to its major U.S. backer, Stephens, Inc.
Directing the Faithful Call for Corporate Social Responsibility (11/08)
An interview with Sister Patricia Wolf, executive director of ICCR, reveals how ICCR has remained a driving force in the corporate social responsibility movement and what might be in store for ICCR in the future.
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.
British Insurers Demand Corporate Social Responsibility (10/30)
The Association of British Insurers recently announced that its members will expect companies to disclose how social, environmental and ethical risks are being handled.
Social Investors Press Unocal to Cut Ties to Burma (10/24)
Social investors have become part of a sophisticated, multi-pronged campaign to keep the Burma issue in front Unocal senior management. (part two of a two-part article)
Students Push University of Virginia Out of Unocal (10/23)
Unocal is feeling pressure from activists because the company continues to do business with Burma's ruling military regime. (part one of a two-part article)
Calvert Foundation Launches Donor Advised Fund (10/22)
With a $5,000 minimum, the Calvert Giving Fund enables many investors to reap the multiple benefits of having a donor advised fund.
WRI Recognizes Eco-Friendly Enterprises (10/19)
New Ventures program aims to bring together socially responsible venture capitalists with environment-friendly businesses looking to expand.
Sustainability in the U.S. Sees Hurdles, Future Growth (10/18)
Symposium discusses market hesitance and corporate attraction to embracing sustainability.
"New World Order" May Turn Out to Be World Interconnectedness (10/12)
Some social investment industry leaders believe one of the lessons from September 11th should be a focus on the long-term economic and environmental health of the whole world.
Research Paper on Corporate Global Environmental Standards Wins Moskowitz Prize (10/04)
For the first time, judges also give Honorable Mention to a paper that provides compelling evidence of no significant cost for actively managed screened portfolios.
SRI in the Rockies Reflects Growth in Social Investing, Perseveres Under Extraordinary Circumstances (09/18)
Conference of SRI industry professionals facilitates learning and networking, and on September 11, support of a different kind.
Political Contributions Bring Oil Drills Closer to ANWR (08/31)
U.S. PIRG finds unsurprising correlation between oil company political donations and House members that voted to allow drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
New Survey Indicates Potential Growth for Faith-based Investing (08/29)
The survey, sponsored by MMA Praxis, found that over half of U.S. investors would be inclined to consider religious or other values in making investment decisions.
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.
Group Invites Grantmakers to Invest with Their Values (08/22)
The Foundation Partnership for Corporate Responsibility seeks to help foundations bring their investment principles in line with their mission.
Survey Finds Most Top U.K. Pension Funds Slow to Adopt SRI (08/20)
Friends of the Earth U.K. survey reveals that over half of the largest pension funds either are not taking steps to implement their social investing policy or they have no social investing policy.
Venture Capitalists Warm to Charcoal from Sustainably Harvested Forests (08/17)
Mexican company selling charcoal from FSC-certified forests gets a lump of capital with the help of a non-profit.
UN Lends a Hand to SRI in Australia (08/16)
UNEP is co-hosting the Ethical Investment Association's second annual conference, to be held next month in Melbourne.
Global Compact Turns One (08/14)
U.N.'s ambitious business initiative makes progress but still has difficulty silencing critics.
Proxy Monitor Buys ISS (08/13)
Move gives one firm significant power in influencing the proxy votes of institutional investors.
Social Fund Assets in the U.S. May Top a Quarter of a Trillion Dollars in Ten Years (08/09)
Study marking Pax World Funds' 30th anniversary also pegs current assets of U.S. socially responsible mutual funds at $103 billion.
Green Room and Board (08/06)
Fairmont Hotels and Resorts has created a valuable resource for hotels that want to lesson their environmental impact.
Fuel Cell Stocks Lose A Little Spark (08/03)
But for the social investor who does not get jolted by volatility, the sector may generate long-term gains.
Canadian Parliament Votes to Give Socially Responsible Shareowner Proposals Equal Billing (08/02)
New law will limit corporate management’s ability to claim that a proposal “promotes a cause” and therefore should be rejected.
All-SRI 401(k) Plan Debuts (07/27)
Seventeen social mutual funds compose a new, diversified plan that can also be customized to client needs.
Americans Increasingly Interested in Corporate Citizenship (07/10)
Survey indicates that Americans are looking for good corporate citizens, but are having difficulty finding them.
Florida Can't Quit Tobacco Profits (06/22)
Sunshine State will again invest pension funds in cigarette makers.
Placer Dome's Efforts at Sustainability: Sincere or Greenwash? (06/19)
Contentious issues surrounding its Porgera mine operations reveal the difficulty in assessing corporate social and environmental performance.
Placer Dome Mine Strikes Resentment in Papua New Guinea (06/18)
Inaction on improving the environmental performance of the Porgera mine is drawing criticism from within Papua New Guinea as well as Australia, Canada and the U.S.
Stock Ownership Increasingly Black and White (06/11)
Survey finds stock ownership among African-Americans is increasing while ownership among Whites has stayed flat.
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.
Simulating the Triple Bottom Line (05/23)
Fiduciaries try their hand at socially responsible investing at the innovative "Triple Bottom Line Simulation Conference 2001" held in New York this week.
Do You Own Firearms Stock? (05/07)
Well-known conventional mutual funds as well as a few teacher pension funds own shares of gun manufacturers.
Merrill Lynch Drops Defined Asset Funds in the U.S. (05/01)
Socially responsible investors now left with few options for unit investment trusts.
Fiduciaries Consider Socially Responsible Investing (04/26)
First conference of its kind brings together institutional investors and the social investing industry to discuss why and how fiduciaries should adopt values-based investing.
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.
Wal-Mart Booted Out of the Domini 400 (04/17)
KLD cites lack of leadership on labor controversies among reasons for removal.
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.
The Dirt on Selling Green (03/27)
The lessons learned from case studies on marketing environment-friendly, "values-based" products are examined in a new report.
California's Supreme Court to Decide Corporate Whitewash Trial (03/02)
Suit charging Nike with false advertising regarding its labor practices has implications for corporate image advertising.
New Association Promotes Social Investing in Asia (02/28)
Organization's first goal of being an Internet-based social investing resource is realized as website goes online today.
Study Examines Corporate Perspective on Supporting Causes (02/27)
Companies view philanthropy in terms of achieving business goals, but not all are marketing their charitable efforts to the fullest extent.
Labor Issue Database May Lighten Social Research Workload (02/22)
International Labour Organization compiles database of Internet sources of information on corporate social responsibility-related employment and labor issues.
Ford Adopts CERES Principles at National Conference (05/05)
The national conference of the Coalition for Environmentally Responsible Economies (CERES) was the backdrop for Ford Motor's historic endorsement.
Calvert Launches New Social Index (05/04)
The Calvert Social Index provides a valuable benchmark for social investors using the broad-based screens of a veteran fund family.
Domini Social Index At Ten Years Old (05/01)
On the tenth anniversary of its socially screened stock index, Kinder, Lydenberg, Domini & Co. has much to celebrate. So do social investors.
IBM Tops List of 100 Best Corporate Citizens (04/18)
In a survey by Business Ethics magazine, some corporations shine in their commitment to diverse stakeholders.
Wealthy Activists Confront Economic Inequality (04/14)
At their national conference Responsible Wealth members examine what they can do as business leaders to promote a broader prosperity.
Shareholder Resolutions This Year Have Ups and Downs (04/13)
A summary of withdrawals and SEC decisions on social and environmental proposals defines the landscape for this year's proxy season.
Friends of the Earth Launches On-line Guide to Shareholder Activism (02/03)
A web-based handbook from the national environmental group provides strategy and resources for shareholder activists.
Putting the Environment on the Ledger (01/04)
Accounting for the Environment has moved the world's most powerful international organizations toward weighing environmental costs along with other expenses. When will the U.S. budge?
The Canadian Difference (01/03)
Social investors in Canada have a certain "Je ne sais quoi," based on cultural, historical, and legal differences north of the border.
The Five Biggest Social Investing Stories of 1999 (12/30)
In the growing field of socially responsible investing, here's five news items that topped the charts and made 1999 a year to remember.
The Genuine Progress Indicator Shows Continued Decline in Quality of Life (12/28)
While the GDP rises, an alternative index released by Redefining Progress shows that genuine economic progress eludes most Americans.
United for a Fair Economy Reports on a Decade of Disparity (12/17)
A new report reveals the growing divide between the rich and poor in the 1990s.