Daily Media Briefing

Daily Media Briefing


Posted in: Corporate Reputation, Daily Media Briefing, Sustainable Investment, Technology & Innovation, Waste

Top Stories

August 08, 2017

Responsible Investment

Commonwealth Bank shareholders sue over ‘inadequate’ disclosure of climate change risks

Commonwealth Bank of Australia is being sued by shareholders for having failed to adequately inform investors of climate change-related risks. The case will be the first anywhere in the world to test in court how companies are required to disclose climate risks. It also follows recent findings over the lack of disclosure of such risks in Australia’s superannuation industry. Emma Herd, Chief Executive of the Investor Group on Climate Change in Australia said many companies would also watch the case for potential implications on their reporting requirements, as companies tend to include climate risks very differently into their annual reports. The claim, brought by Environmental Justice Australia on behalf of two Commonwealth Bank shareholders could entail significant reputational and financial risks related to the bank’s position on funding Adani’s proposed Carmichael coalmine. The federal court will have to decide how the case should proceed. (Guardian)


Tesco to scrap single-use carrier bags in favour of ‘bag for life’

From August 28th, UK’s largest supermarket Tesco is replacing all of its 5p single-use carrier bags – which helped reduce the use of single-use plastic bags by 83% since 2014 – with a new 10p ‘bag for life’ made from 94% recycled plastic. Online Tesco shoppers will still be able to opt for single-use carrier bags or select a bagless delivery, which 57% of the customer base is now doing. Tesco has remained the biggest seller of single-use plastic bags – selling as much as the other six major UK retailers combined – hence this move which follows a 10-week trial undertaken by three Tesco stores to test how customers would manage without the 5p bag option. All sales will be passed on to fund community projects across the country through Tesco’s Bags of Help scheme, which has already contributed £33 million of net proceeds to more than 6,400 local community projects. (edie)

Technology & Innovation

Australia must embrace AI revolution with automation set to affect every job, report says

Australia should double its pace of artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics automation to reap a $2.2 trillion opportunity by 2030, according to a new report by economics and strategy consulting firm AlphaBeta. It also found that Australian companies will have to support more than 3 million workers whose jobs are likely to change, with an average of four hours per week taken away over the next 15 years. Although most jobs will not disappear, the benefits will only flow into the national economy if workers are redeployed. The tasks most likely to be automated are typically the most dangerous, least enjoyable and often lowest paid, the report says. “We [must] ensure that all of that time that is lost to machines from the Australian workplace is redeployed and people are found new jobs and new tasks”, economist and Director of AlphaBeta, Andrew Charlton, said. (ABC News)

Corporate Reputation

Upmarket cereal brands ignore sugar content warnings

A dozen of high-end cereal brands such as Dorset Cereals, Kellogg’s and Jordans Country Crisp are refusing to incorporate the UK Department of Health’s recommended “traffic light” system on their boxes because they do not want to ruin their upmarket packaging, campaigners have said. Pressure group Action on Sugar is calling for the system to become mandatory for all food products, but said it is being widely ignored by cereal manufacturers wary of a red label. The group said the absence of a label makes it hard for consumers to make healthy choices. It also found that Eat Natural, Lizi’s, Nature’s Path, Paleo Foods Co., Rude Health and Dorset Cereals, contain no FOP nutrition labelling and some products contain high levels of sugar. The sugar and health expert group says that cereal consumers, who are often children, could save themselves around 45 teaspoons of sugar per month (182g) if they had access to consistent FOP labelling. (Telegraph)

Policy & Research

Government report finds drastic impact of climate change on U.S.

The average temperature in the United States has risen rapidly and drastically since 1980, and recent decades have been the warmest of the past 1,500 years, according to a sweeping federal climate change report awaiting approval by the Trump administration by August 18th. The draft report by scientists from 13 federal agencies, which has not yet been made public, notes that “many lines of evidence demonstrate that human activities […] are primarily responsible for recent observed climate change”. Scientists say they fear that the Trump administration could change or suppress the report. Scott Purrit, the administrator of the E.P.A.– and one of the agencies that must approve the report – has said he does not believe that carbon dioxide is a primary contributor to global warming. (NY Times)


Image Source: Breakfast cereals by Max Pixel team at Max Pixel. CC 0.