Top Stories

October 05, 2022


GDPR to be scrapped in favour of UK data privacy alternative

The UK will scrap the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the EU’s data privacy regime, and replace it with an alternative. The digital and culture secretary Michelle Donelan said the proposed new system will be simpler and clearer for businesses to navigate. The GDPR, which aims to enhance individuals’ rights to their own personal data, took effect across the UK and EU and the European Economic Area in May 2018. It applies to all businesses that process data held by anyone in these regions. However, some business leaders have voiced criticism, expressing that the new bill will add more unwelcome uncertainty for UK businesses. Donelan’s announcement came after the prime minister announced an additional exemption for tens of thousands of employers from reporting obligations such as gender pay gap reporting. (Personnel Today)


1 in 7 ESG funds has higher than average carbon emissions intensity

One in seven funds branded as sustainable has a carbon emissions intensity higher than the average across all investment funds. The analysis, conducted by sustainability data and technology platform ESG Book, also found that no climate-labelled fund has a portfolio fully aligned with the Paris Agreement’s goal. ESG- and climate-labelled funds have boomed in recent years as trillions of dollars are looking for products that are deemed more socially and environmentally friendly, prompting regulators to increase scrutiny of investment managers’ claims. Among the 515 climate funds the study analysed, 73 showed a greater emissions intensity ratio than the average recorded across the 36,000 funds ESG Book tracks, and 15 funds exceeded 400 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent per million dollars of revenue – more than twice as high as the average. (Reuters)


Germany’s RWE aims to phase out coal by 2030, 8 years early

Germany's largest power producer RWE said it will bring forward its coal phase-out by 8 years and end lignite-based electricity generation in 2030 as part of a deal reached with the government. However, faced with an energy crisis, RWE said it would temporarily boost its use of power plants fuelled by heavily polluting lignite, or brown coal. The company said it would not request additional compensation for moving the phase-out date forward beyond the €2.6 billion it was promised under the previous plan. As part of the move, the decommissioning of RWE’s Neurath D and E power plant units, originally scheduled for the end of 2022, will be deferred until 2024. To safeguard the security of supply beyond 2030, the German government can also decide by 2026 to keep RWE’s last lignite-fired plants on standby until the end of 2033. (Reuters)


Philippines raises minimum renewable capacity to 2.5% in power mix

The Philippines has grown its renewable energy capacity in line with the government’s target to utilise 35% clean power by the end of the decade, the government announced. Under the country’s renewable energy portfolio standards, a policy mechanism that mandates electricity suppliers to source an agreed portion of their energy supply from eligible clean power, the minimum amount of green energy supplied to distribution utilities or direct buyers will increase from 1% to 2.5% by 2023. The current share of solar, wind, hydropower, geothermal and biomass energy in the power generation mix is at 22%. As of June 2022, a total of 998 renewable energy contracts with a combined installed capacity of 5,460.59 MW have been awarded by the government. This generated around $4.6 million in investment for the country. (Eco-Business)


People of colour far likelier to live in England’s high air pollution areas

People of colour in England are more than three times more likely to live in neighbourhoods with very high air pollution, putting them at disproportionate risk of heart attacks, cancer and strokes. Minority ethnic people make up nearly half the populations living in areas where average levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) or small particulate matter (PM2.5) were double World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines, research based on official statistics showed. Conversely, the areas with the cleanest air were the whitest, with fewer than one in 20 people from the areas with pollution within recommended levels hailing from a minority ethnic background. The analysis also found that air pollution also disproportionately affected lower-income areas, with half of neighbourhoods with high air pollution in the bottom 30% of the most deprived neighbourhoods. (The Guardian)

*Subscription required 







Would you love to work in sustainability, supporting big brands in their responsible business journeys? Click here to see info on our current openings. We can't wait to hear from you



Actions for Business 2022

B4SI Annual Review 2021