Daily Media Briefing 19th February

Daily Media Briefing

 

Posted in: Corporate Reputation, Daily Media Briefing, Employees, Environment, Policy & Research, Supply Chain, Waste

Top Stories

February 19, 2013

Corporate Reputation

EU watchdogs threaten Google over privacy

Google risks being sanctioned by European regulators unless it radically changes its privacy policies. European privacy regulators have said that Google is yet to respond to concerns raised during a probe last year, which showed that the company failed to provide its users with adequate information about how their data was being used. European officials can impose fines of up to €1m but a new proposal would give national watchdogs power to fine companies up to two percent of annual worldwide turnover – in Google’s case that could come to about $760m.(Financial Times*)

Employees

Amplats' South Africa operations shut after mine violence

All of Anglo American Platinum's operations in South Africa have been shut after workers stayed away following violence at one of the mines. At least 13 workers were wounded by rubber bullets or machetes at Amplats' Siphumelele mine, in the north of the country, after clashes between rival unions in the first major violence this year, which follows labour unrest across the sector in 2012. The company has declared the work stoppage illegal. (Reuters)

Environment

Protestors call for Obama to block tar sands pipeline

An estimated 35,000 protestors have descended on Washington to call on President Obama to block the controversial Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. The "Forward on Climate" event is hailed as the largest climate change protest in US history by organisers and will increase pressure on Obama ahead of the decision on whether the pipeline can proceed. The protest, backed by a host of green NGOs, including the 350.org campaign, the Sierra Club and the NRDC, urged the President to follow up his recent commitments on climate change by blocking a project that they argue would lead to a surge in development of carbon-intensive tar sands projects. (Business Green, Politico)

Supply Chain

Nestlé hit by horsemeat scandal

Nestlé, the world's biggest food company, has removed beef ready meals from shelves in Italy and Spain after tests revealed traces of horse DNA. The company has halted deliveries of products containing meat from a German supplier. Nestlé is the latest in a string of major food producers to find traces of horsemeat in beef meals. A spokesman for the company said levels of horse DNA were very low but above one percent. "There is no food safety issue, but the mislabelling of products means they fail to meet the very high standards consumers expect from us," said the company. (Financial Times*, BBC)

Economy

Ministers urged to help reverse green tech slide

A new report by the EEF manufacturers’ organisation has warned that UK green technology output is faltering. Britain is the world’s sixth largest producer and provider in the field, generating £122bn in annual sales of green goods and services but the EEF said that position was in danger as industry’s output shrinks. This is at the same time as output in countries such as China, the US, India and South Korea record double-digit growth in their green industrial base. The EEF said the UK risked losing whole sectors such as steel, glass and cement through crippling energy costs – unless technologies were developed to “decarbonise” them. (Financial Times*, Business Green)

Policy & Research

Shanghai passes law to limit excess packaging

The Shanghai City Parliament has passed a law to reduce commercial packaging, in an effort to halt the increasing problem of waste in the city. According to Chinese Government statistics, a third of all household garbage in China is packaging. Half of this packaging waste has been deemed "excess packaging," which carries an estimated annual production cost of 400bn RMB. The city’s new law would fine companies for producing products with excess packaging. Shanghai is the first city in China to pass this type of law. (China Green News)

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