Top Stories

June 08, 2022


Tesco criticised over greenwashing over plant-based food

UK supermarket Tesco has been criticised by the UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) after it failed to show that its ‘Plant Chef’ burgers and plant protein-based foods were more environmentally friendly than their meat equivalents following claims made in its advertising. The ASA barred Tesco from repeating a series of adverts on TV, radio, online and in the press which said consumers could make a difference to the planet by buying the products. In its defence, Tesco made claims that relied on general evidence that diets that include meat have a greater environmental impact. But the ASA concluded that Tesco failed to “hold any evidence in relation to the full lifecycle of any products of the Plant Chef range”. The ASA added that adverts lacking “robust evidence” were “likely to be misleading”. (Financial Times)*


Windfall tax could lead to £8bn in North Sea energy projects

More than £8 billion of North Sea energy projects could now be given the green light rapidly as fossil fuel firms take advantage of a tax break in UK Government’s Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s windfall tax. The chancellor introduced a one-off levy on North Sea oil and gas operators who have raked in outsized profits as energy prices have boomed with the aim of raising $5 billion to help fund measures to offset rising household bills. The levy also offers 91p of tax savings for every £1 of investment made, in a move to encourage firms to reinvest bumper earnings in the UK and build domestic energy supplies. However, this concerns campaigners who have warned that ramping up North Sea production risks hindering efforts to tackle climate change. (The Guardian)


Singapore coalition to sell sustainable aviation fuel credits

Singapore Airlines along with investment company Temasek Holdings and the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore are to launch the sale of 1,000 sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) credits in July 2022. The credits are generated from 1,000 tonnes of neat SAF blended, delivered and uplifted from Singapore’s Changi Airport. A company statement estimates that, “every credit purchased will help reduce 2.5 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions. A spokesperson from Singapore Airlines said the company can now offer its corporate customers and travellers more opportunities to mitigate their carbon emissions using SAF credits. The credits are registered with the independent, Swiss-based Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials. The airline’s freight forwarders could also sell the credits to their clients to reduce carbon emissions from their business operations, the statement added. (Reuters)


Energy sector sees little rise in executive gender diversity

The energy sector has shown slow progress in gender parity on company boards, with women occupying just 15% of executive director positions in 2022 – up by just 1% since 2021. According to the annual state of the nation report from campaign group POWERful Women, only 20 of the top 80 UK energy providers have any women in executive director roles. POWERful Women has set the sector a target of 30% female representation in executive director positions by 2030, yet the number of companies that achieved this goal has declined, from 15 in 2021 to 11 in 2022. Data showed only a 3% increase in board seats occupied by women. However, some progress saw the proportion of energy companies with all-male boards falling from 28% to 23% in a year. (Personnel Today)


Study finds a racial disparity in cancer diagnoses

Black people are more than a third less likely than white people to be diagnosed with cancer via screenings in England, according to the first study of its kind. The study of more than 240,000 cancer patients between 2013 and 2017 found that 8.61% of patients were diagnosed via screenings. Broke down by ethnicity, the figure for white people was 8.27%, but only 5.11% among Black people. The findings suggest that Black people are 38% less likely to be diagnosed via screenings than white people. Michelle Mitchell, the chief executive of Cancer Research UK, which funded the research, said the lower screening diagnosis rates in Black patients was concerning. “More detailed ethnicity data is needed to allow us to understand the full picture, and target interventions to improve screening uptake”, she added. (The Guardian)

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