Daily Media Briefing

Daily Media Briefing


Posted in: Corporate Reputation, Daily Media Briefing, Strategy, Sustainable Investment, Waste

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October 16, 2015

Sustainable Development

Novartis: Kenya first to receive $1 a month cancer and diabetes drugs

Patients suffering from breast cancer, diabetes, respiratory illnesses and heart diseases in Kenya will buy drugs at $1 a month in a programme launched by pharmaceutical giant, Novartis. Kenya is the first country to benefit from the ‘Novartis Access’ programme, aimed at expanding affordable treatment options against chronic diseases in 30 low- and low-middle-income countries. The Novartis portfolio is being offered to the Kenyan government, non-governmental organisations and other public-sector healthcare providers for $1 per treatment, per month. A monthly dose of cancer drugs manufactured by Novartis usually costs between $100 and $300 per month, according to several doctors. “The successful implementation of the programme in Kenya will be essential to guide its expansion to other countries in future,” said Joerg Reinhardt, chairman of the board of Novartis. Other countries set to benefit include Ethiopia, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, Sudan and Uganda. (Business Daily Africa; MarketWatch)

Responsible Investment

North American shareholders achieve major corporate sustainability improvements

Sustainability advocacy non-profit Ceres has released a report on the implementation of corporate commitments made to shareholders in the most recent proxy seasons. The analysis found that shareholder resolutions and company dialogues helped spur over 100 corporate commitments in North America in 2014 and 2015 to address critical sustainability challenges, including reducing greenhouse gases, limiting fossil fuel industry risks, and protecting forests. The analysis also found that the majority (73 percent), though not all of the commitments, have been fully met. “More than ever, companies are hearing loud and clear that investors are concerned about growing sustainability risks and want to see tangible steps to manage and reduce these risks,” said Chris Davis, Director of Ceres’ Investor Program. “Long-term investors – from socially responsible and religious funds to major pension funds and asset managers – are increasingly focused on environmental, social and governance factors that will drive future company performance.” (3BL Media)

Corporate Reputation

Report: Double standards of oil and gas majors revealed

A new report from NGO InfluenceMap, drawn from over 10,000 evidence points, claims to demonstrate the stark contradictions in stated claims of oil and gas companies and the obstructive lobbying activities of the trade associations they actively support and finance. The research analyses three key strands of climate policy – the carbon tax, emissions trading and greenhouse gas emissions regulations – and intersects the public stance of the oil majors with the actions of the trade bodies they have close links to. The findings show Shell demonstrating the biggest disconnect between rhetoric and action, followed by French firm Total. BP, Chevron and Exxon, meanwhile, appear to be as equally obstructive as their trade associations. The report comes as leading energy groups this week launch a range of measures through the Oil and Gas Climate Initiative (OGCI), as a way of improving their image in the face of longstanding criticism of their business practices ahead of UN COP 21 climate talks in Paris. (Influence Map)


WRAP to lead €2.1 million raw materials recovery project for electronics

UK waste-reduction charity WRAP is launching a first-of-its-kind project to explore commercial opportunities for harvesting critical raw materials and precious metals from everyday end-of-life electronic products. The EU LIFE-funded project, Critical Raw Material Closed Loop Recovery (CRM Recovery), will link collection methods with recovery success. Globally, an estimated 41.8 million tonnes of e-waste was generated in 2014, forecast to increase to 50 million tonnes of e-waste in 2018. WRAP research has shown that nearly 40 percent of electrical products are disposed of in landfills. The CRM Recovery project will investigate commercial streams and solutions to reduce waste and the need for mining raw materials. It will result in policy recommendations and proposals for infrastructure development for the cost-effective recovery of these materials to the European Commission. To carry out this three-and-a-half year project, WRAP is partnering with the Knowledge Transfer Network, battery recycler ERP UK, and the European Advanced Recycling Network. (Sustainable Brands)


European Dairy Industry makes strides in job creation

At the European Dairy Association’s Annual Congress in Edinburgh two sustainability experts outlined programmes to facilitate job creation, training and development and tackle skills shortages in the dairy industry. Chris Edwards, Business Development Manager at Tetra Pak, presented the Eden project, a unique UK initiative set up by and for the dairy industry specifically to train dairy technicians and engineers. Tom Banham, Head of Academy Talent Acquisition at Nestlé, also shared his insights at the breakout session about the European-wide Alliance for YOUth scheme, which has seen Nestlé partner with almost 200 companies in Europe to assist young people in finding work opportunities. Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK, said: “The UK dairy industry works hard to address any skills shortage and to ensure the future of the dairy industry is sustainable. The results so far have been encouraging and the dairy sector constantly strives to come up with workable solutions. Sustainability remains at the heart of the agenda across Europe.” (Blue and Green Tomorrow)

Image Source: Industria Novartis by Andrew / CC BY 2.0