Policy & Research
UK's green goods and services grew £5.4 billion last year
Record growth over the last year pushed the UK green goods and services market past the £122bn mark, according to new government figures that reveal the low carbon economy now employs almost one million people. The sector grew 4.7% against the 2009/10 figure of £116.8 billion, providing an additional £5.4 billion of economic activity as green industries continued to defy the sluggish progress made by the rest of the economy. The new report, released earlier this week by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, shows that the UK secured a 3.7% share of the global market and also retained its place as the sixth-largest green sector in the world, behind the US, China, Japan, India and Germany.
Meaningful work in high demand for today's young workforce
A new study examining work life and jobs with meaning finds that 65% of American university students expect to make an impact on causes and issues they care about in their future job. The study, by the US non-profit Net Impact, found that about two-thirds of students expect to be able to make some positive social or environmental difference through their work, and that nearly half would be willing to take a 15% pay cut to have a job that makes a beneficial social or environmental impact. "For the first time, we have data that shows a direct connection between job satisfaction and making a difference at work," said Net Impact CEO, Liz Maw. "Employees today don’t want to check their values at the door when they arrive at their jobs."
KFC denies Greenpeace sourcing allegations
Fast-food chain KFC has strongly denied allegations from Greenpeace that some of its packaging contains material sourced from Indonesian rainforests. The claims, which appeared in a report published by the campaign group, were also rejected by supplier Asia Pulp and Paper (APP), who Greenpeace alleged used timber from rainforests. The report, How KFC is Junking the Jungle, said forensic testing and supply chain research showed some packaging contained more than 50% mixed tropical hardwood (MTH). A KFC spokesman said that the company only used recycled or sustainable packaging materials, but Greenpeace stands by its report.
India warns EU over airline carbon tax
India has threatened to ban European airlines from its airspace if Brussels sanctions Indian carriers in a dispute over an EU plan to charge carriers for their pollution. "Travelling is always a two-way traffic," Ajit Singh, civil aviation minister, said in an interview. "If they can impose sanctions so can other countries." Dozens of countries, including the US and Russia, have attacked Brussels for subjecting their airlines to an EU carbon emissions trading scheme from this year – a move also questioned by industry executives. "Europe wanted to lead the way without listening," Bernard Gustin, chief executive of Brussels Airlines, said on Thursday at the Association of European Airlines annual meeting.
Financial Times* p10
Google and Fox among 54 Climate Corps newcomers
Google, Pfizer and Fox Entertainment Group are among the 54 companies joining the US advocacy group the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF)'s 'Climate Corps' programme for the first time this year. The EDF Climate Corps fellowship places specially trained MBA and MPA students in companies, cities and universities to identify and assess cost-effective opportunities to save energy and reduce emissions. Since 2008, Climate Corps fellows have identified opportunities that could cut enough energy to power nearly 100,000 homes a year, avoid the annual carbon emissions of 200,000 cars, and save more than $1 billion in net operating costs over the project lifetimes, the EDF says. Former participants have included McDonald's and Target, although neither of them are participating in 2012.