Top Stories

September 04, 2015


New Data: CVS’ no smokes decision decreased tobacco sales in chains across the US

One year after drugstore chain CVS Health stopped selling cigarettes, the company released new data that shows the decision has influenced tobacco sales across many types of retailers and announced a new school-based tobacco-prevention program. “One year ago, we stopped selling tobacco products because it conflicted with our purpose of helping people on their path to better health,” said Troyen A. Brennan, M.D., M.P.H., Chief Medical Officer at CVS Health. The study, conducted by the CVS Health Research Institute, evaluated cigarette pack purchases at drug, food, big box, dollar, convenience and gas station retailers in the eight months after CVS stopped selling tobacco products. The findings revealed that approximately 95 million fewer cigarette packs were sold in the eight months following the company’s action. The impact is roughly equivalent to a 1 percent reduction in cigarette pack sales, or 0.14 fewer packs per smoker per month over the eight month period. (Sustainable Brands)


Carbon Neutral project is first in Australia to receive prestigious Gold Standard certification

The carbon solutions provider company, Carbon Neutral, has achieved global recognition with the first Australian carbon emissions reduction project to receive Gold Standard certification. Over the past eight years, Carbon Neutral has established innovative large-scale reforestation projects which extend across 10,000 hectares of the Western Australian Wheatbelt – in the process creating Australia’s largest revegetation project based on carbon capture and biodiversity. Following a lengthy and rigorous process which involved significant investment, Carbon Neutral’s native reforestation project has been awarded prestigious Gold Standard certification by the Geneva-based Gold Standard Foundation. The recognition comes as Carbon Neutral is experiencing growing demand for reducing carbon emissions from Australian businesses, including some of the nation’s leading corporates. Carbon Neutral CEO Ray Wilson said: “Australian companies now view environmental responsibility as a critical component of their business, and they are increasingly being measured on their performance by consumers, investors and auditors. (Eco-Business)


Food and drink companies found to be ignoring biggest impact on climate

The vast majority of the world’s biggest food, beverage and tobacco companies are ignoring their largest climate impacts by failing to disclose emissions from agricultural production, according to a new CDP analysis. When talking about the impacts of climate change, few risks are more ingrained or tangible than those it poses to future food supply. From spikes in food prices to threats to the coffee industry, consumers are increasingly aware of the effects of rising global average temperatures. For companies in the food, beverage and tobacco sectors, climate change presents a two-fold challenge: the industry is highly exposed to climate-related impacts, but is at the same time a major contributor to increasing global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions levels – particularly from agricultural production, which according to the IPCC causes 10-14 percent of global GHG emissions. (The Guardian)

International Development

World Bank Report: Open Data can support sustainable development

The World Bank has now published a new policy paper, that highlights the ways Open Data can be utilized to achieve development goals through a range of applications. These include medical care, agriculture, urban planning, financial access and management, and several other areas. The report highlights four primary benefits of Open Data: Fostering economic growth and job creation; Improving efficiency and effectiveness of public services; Increasing government transparency, accountability, and citizen participation; and facilitating better information sharing within government. Open Data is a resource with high socio-economic value, which has been recognized globally as a key engine for achieving the post-2015 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). (Just Means)

Image Source: Smoking in black and white by Sophie Riches / CC BY-SA 3.0