Top Stories

June 10, 2013

Corporate Reputation

Technology giants deny spying co-operation

Technology giants Apple, Facebook and Google have issued strongly-worded denials about their alleged co-operation with US spy agencies. All said that they did not allow the government direct access to their systems and had never heard of the National Security Agency (NSA)’s “Prism” programme. However, the New York Times reported that companies named in leaked documents had co-operated to some degree with the US authorities, and that some companies, including Google and Facebook, discussed setting up secure online “rooms” where requested information could be sent and accessed by the NSA. Twitter was a notable exception to the list and has reportedly declined to co-operate. (Guardian)


US, China agree to reduce use of hydrofluorocarbons

US President Barack Obama and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, agreed on Saturday to cooperate in fighting climate change by cutting the use of hydrofluorocarbons, or HFCs, commonly used in refrigerators and air conditioners. According to a White House statement, phasing down HFCs worldwide could reduce some 90 gigatons of carbon dioxide equivalent by 2050, an amount equal to about two years' worth of global greenhouse gas emissions. Achim Steiner, Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), welcomed the announcement, saying that it “could signal a new and perhaps transformational chapter in international cooperation on climate change”. (Reuters; UNEP)

DHL joins green deliveries trend

Logistics company DHL is trialling a prototype hybrid truck that it claims is the first of its kind in the UK. DHL says the truck’s unique design will help cut fuel consumption and carbon emissions by up to 25 percent compared to standard delivery trucks. If the trial proves successful, the new technology could "play a major role" in its urban, local, and home delivery operations. Delivery companies are increasingly turning to green and alternative fuel vehicles as a means of cutting carbon emissions and tackling rising fuel costs: FedEx and UPS are expanding their electric fleets, while Sainsbury's announced last month it now has 51 lorries fuelled by a bio-methane blend. (BusinessGreen)

Social Business

Social Stock Exchange is launched with 12 member companies

The Social Stock Exchange, an online portal that will publish details of social ventures that want investment, has been launched in the UK. The initiative, which is supported by the London Stock Exchange, has been launched with 12 listed member companies from industries such as recycling, clean technology and social and affordable housing. The launch was announced by the Prime Minister, David Cameron, at the Social Impact Investment Conference in London, an initiative to promote social investment as part of the UK’s leadership of the G8, which holds its annual summit in the UK later this month. The stock exchange will act as a “shop window” through which social investors can access information on publicly listed businesses. (Third Sector)