- Apple’s new software to deal with screen addiction
- Big investors urge G7 to step up climate action
- Hawaii signs law to become climate neutral by 2045
- Lush removes #SpyCops posters from some shops after “intimidation from ex-police officers”
- US appeals against ruling that Trump could not block Twitter followers
Technology & Innovation
Apple has a new solution to growing concerns about app addiction and excess screen time: more software. The iPhone maker has promised that the next version of iOS would help its customers manage the time they and their children spend using apps and playing games. Measures include the option to place time limits on usage of specific apps. The updates will be released to hundreds of millions of iPhone owners alongside iOS 12 later in 2018. Parents will be able to set time limits for their children’s iPhones and iPads, applied to specific apps or entire categories such as games, chat and video. They can also enforce screen “downtime” for specific times of day, such as overnight. Smartphone companies such as Apple and Google, which develops the Android operating system, have come under pressure from shareholders and health campaigners to deal with the constant distraction and compulsive behaviour associated with the use of mobile devices. (Financial Times*)
Institutional investors with a $26 trillion in assets under management called on Group of Seven leaders to phase out the use of coal in power generation to help limit climate change, despite strong opposition from Washington. “The global shift to clean energy is under way, but much more needs to be done by governments,” the group of 288 investors wrote in a statement before the G7 summit in Canada on June 8-9th 2018. Signatories included Allianz Global Investors, Aviva Investors, DWS, HSBC Global Asset Management, Nomura Asset Management, Australian Super, HESTA and some major US pension funds including CalPERS. The investors called on governments to “phase out thermal coal power worldwide by set deadlines”, to phase out fossil fuel subsidies and to “put a meaningful price on carbon”. The investors also urged governments to strengthen national plans for cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 2020 and to ensure that companies improve climate-related financial reporting. (Reuters)
Hawaii has set the most ambitious climate goal in the US after it signed a bill to become carbon neutral by 2045. The state also signed a bill mandating sea level rise to be factored into review processes for building projects, and a bill to restore the states’ forests for carbon offsets. Hawaii already has some of the most rigorous climate policies in the US, including a mandate to achieve 100 percent renewable energy by 2045 and a law to uphold the Paris Agreement. The new bill to make the archipelago in the Central Pacific carbon neutral by 2045 notes that sea level rise could cause $19 billion worth of damage in Hawaii. Hawaii joins countries such as Sweden in signing into law a commitment to becoming carbon neutral. (Climate Change News)
Cosmetics chain Lush has removed its controversial campaign posters from some UK shops after it claimed to have been facing intimidation from ex-police officers. The company has caused outrage followings its launch of the #SpyCops campaign, which saw posters placed in shop windows featuring police officers and the words “paid to lie”, along with faux police tape emblazoned with the words: “Police have crossed a line”. However, some shops have removed posters from their windows, allegedly due to intimidation from ex-officers. The campaign has been described by Lush as an attempt to raise awareness of the “ongoing undercover policing scandal where officers have infiltrated the lives, homes and beds of activists”. Calum Macleod, chair of the Police Federation of England and Wales, said in a statement: “The Lush advertising campaign is offensive, disgusting and an insult to the hard work, professionalism and dedication of police officers throughout the UK.” (Independent)
The US Justice Department has said it would appeal against a federal judge’s ruling that President Donald Trump may not legally block Twitter users from his account on the social media platform based on their political views, according to a court filing. Jameel Jaffer, a lawyer for the seven plaintiffs who sued, said the @realDonaldTrump account had unblocked the seven plaintiffs. “We’re pleased that the White House unblocked our clients from the President’s Twitter account but disappointed that the government intends to appeal the district court’s thoughtful and well-supported ruling,” Jaffer said in an email. U.S. District Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald in Manhattan ruled on May 23rd 2018 that comments on the president’s account, and those of other government officials, were public forums and that blocking Twitter users for their views violated their right to free speech under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. (Reuters)
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