Beijing Accuses U.S. of Trade Violations in Energy Sector
China’s Commerce Ministry accused the United States government on Thursday of violating free-trade rules through support for six renewable energy projects, but did not identify the projects or the trade rules that had allegedly been violated. It was the latest volley in a widening conflict between the two countries over clean power. The United States and China, the world’s two biggest energy users, have pledged to work together to develop renewable sources. But they accuse each other of improperly subsidising or protecting their manufacturers.
More than a third of financial directors against carbon reporting
Despite strong business support more than a third of financial directors oppose the introduction of mandatory carbon reporting (MCR), a new poll has revealed. According to a survey by fleet management company Lex Autolease, which polled nearly 500 financial directors, 63% of financial stakeholders believe that MCR would make no difference to their organisation, while 25% warned it will inhibit business growth. The survey also revealed that a further 63% of respondents were not even aware of the UK Climate Change Act 2008. The findings follow government lobbying by many leading business groups, including the CBI (Confederation of British Industry) and Aldersgate Group for MCR to be implemented after a decision to introduce reporting was delayed earlier this year.
Policy & Research
Male corporate elite bars women's way to top, says study of headhunters
The "male-dominated corporate elite" occupying the boardrooms of the UK's biggest companies is deterring the appointment of women to the upper echelons of corporate Britain, the equalities watchdog has warned. The first in-depth study of recruitment of non-executive directors by headhunters, carried out for the Equality and Human Rights Commission, finds that the men who hold the majority of seats around the tables of the 350 biggest companies listed in London tend to select new members with similar characteristics to themselves.
Policies to exclude non-sustainable suppliers needed
A survey of 250 senior executives in eight countries found only 15 per cent have procurement policies that exclude non-sustainable suppliers. A further 14 per cent have plans to introduce such policies, according to research by Accenture. The survey quizzed vice presidents or equivalent with decision-making input from companies in the UK, US, Japan, Germany, France, China, Brazil and India in March this year. The report, Long-term growth, short-term differentiation and profits from sustainable products and services, said in terms of the supply chains, 16 per cent had checked sustainability credentials and a further 16 per cent planned to do so.