Owens Corning, a global company with $6 billion in sales that develops and produces insulation, roofing and fiberglass composites in 26 countries, reduced water use by 37% in 2016 compared with 2010 levels, according to its new sustainability report. It not only exceeded its 2020 water goals, it also decreased particulate matter emissions last year by 23% over 2010 rates.
A research team at University of California at San Diego has unveiled a new skin patch containing enzymes that feed off sweat and have real-life technological capabilities and applications. In tests, researchers used the soft, stretchable electronic-skin-based biofuel cell to power a radio for two days and now are looking at how the wearable biofuel cell might be used for wearable devices to track a person's health.
The assessment panel tasked with reviewing how the UN-Habitat should spearhead the 20-year global New Urban Agenda strategy has itself come under scrutiny, writes Gregory Scruggs. Questions are being raised about the panel's closed-door meetings as well as incidences among panel members that may have compromised the panel's independent standing.
A draft law submitted to the National People's Congress would fine polluters dumping untreated contaminants into the soil up to $293,000, provide state funds to support cleanup projects and establish a nationwide monitoring network, according to China Daily. Another Chinese newspaper reported that the draft law would establish priority protection areas and ban grazing and crop growing in heavily polluted areas, among other provisions.
Davis Smith started online outdoor apparel business Cotopaxi as a benefit corporation, and the company now commits 2% of its annual revenue to nonprofits focused on the developing world. Investor Kirsten Green notes that millennials are seeking out "brands that have a message that they can connect with."
Chemists have an important role to play in the creation of a circular future, because they can use chemical engineering to improve resource efficiency, bolstering sustainability in chemicals, plastics, water, energy and other fields, says University of Surrey environmental professor Roland Clift. "I urge chemical engineers, and all those involved in the design and operation of manufacturing processes, to rethink what we mean by a sustainable economy," he writes.
Top executives at Cannes Lions discussed diversity in the industry, talking about the importance of leadership, giving women confidence and influencing partners to make diversity a priority. "We need to put pressure on agencies and vendors, but most importantly, we need to believe that it's going to help [our] business," Blackrock Chief Marketing Officer Frank Cooper said.
France intends to pass a law this fall to stop granting licenses for oil and natural gas exploration, said Nicolas Hulot, energy minister. The law would apply to exploration in France and its territories overseas.
Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., has proposed a bill that, if approved, would establish a National Green Bank charged with financing clean energy and energy efficiency projects at the regional, state and municipal level. Connecticut's state green bank -- one of six in the US -- has invested more than $1 billion in sustainable energy and created almost 13,000 jobs since 2011.
Company cultures and brands should have "an interdependent and mutually reinforcing relationship" to help increase competitiveness and customer satisfaction while reducing turnover, writes Denise Lee Yohn. Businesses can create a standout brand by having a unified purpose and core values and seeing how closely brand and culture line up.