Weekly Round Up: Al Gore the Fund Manager, China Understates Coal Consumption, and Exxon to Face Justice

With so much going on in the realm of sustainability, leadership, and innovation, and only a limited amount of bandwidth for professionals in this space, we have created this weekly post to highlight articles that we feel are (1) important, (2) relevant, and (3) interesting in the areas of business sustainability.

If you have an article that you feel needs to be mentioned, please do so in the comments section

The Planet-Saving, Capitalism-Subverting, Surprisingly Lucrative Investment Secrets of Al Gore

While known for his past life as US Senator and Vice President and award winning environmentalist, through this article we are introduced to Al Gore the fund manager that uses a sustainability lens to make investments.  Investment decisions that have returned almost a full 5% more than the average fund.

China Burns Much More Coal Than Reported, Complicating Climate Talks

Data from the Chinese Bureau of National Statistic have revealed that coal burning has been up to 17% greater than previously stated, sparking fears of the climatic impact. In our blog this week we addressed this issue, but also its implications for Chinese coal reserves, an area we feel is China’s greatest energy challenge.

Exxon Mobil Investigated for Possible Climate Change Lies by New York Attorney General

In the wake of the LA Times report that Exxon knew of, and willfully disregarded, the links to carbon and climate change, calls are now being made by senior US lawmakers (including Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton) for the US Department of Justice to get involved.  This is significant considering the fact that this research took place nearly 30 years ago, and while the threat of investigation may be low, the trend is clear.  That, like tobacco, there is a clarity around the industries and processes that are culpable, and as stakeholders align over time, operating those businesses is going to grow increasingly difficult.

Strategic sustainability uses of Life Cycle Analysis

As industry transparency becomes more important to the consumer, understanding the impacts of a products value chain can aid development and image. Here, Gregory Unruh, of George Mason University in Fairfax discusses the uses and advantages to LCA in developing the environmental credentials of your product.

US ‘playing catch-up to China’ in clean energy efforts, UN climate chief says

Christiana Figueres, belittles the US for their slow progress on clean energy development, claiming China is now the clear leader in the area. These comments set the platform for debate in the up and coming World Climate Summit in Paris later this year.


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