Greenwashing 2.0? Defining what it means to be a 'net-zero' business
Net-zero emissions has been scientifically heralded as a necessity to reverse the worst impacts of climate change. But a flurry of recent business commitments to become 'carbon-negative' and 'resource-positive' raises a critical question: does achieving 'net-zero' actually constitute business leadership?
UK Government's 'gold standard' Environment Bill reintroduced
The UK Government's long-awaited Environment Bill has finally been reintroduced to Parliament, outlining powers to stop the exports of plastic waste to developing countries, and revamped governance systems on clean air and biodiversity and two-yearly reviews to update the Bill if required.
Sainsbury's commits £1bn to become net-zero by 2040
Supermarket retailer Sainsbury's has pledged to invest £1bn over the next 20 years in order to become a net-zero business across its own operations.
Net-zero cities: Oxford's mission to become carbon-neutral by 2030
edie's new mini-series exploring how local authorities are collaborating with businesses to actuate community-centred sustainability schemes on the road to net-zero emissions continues, this time with a look at how Oxford and its Citizens' Climate Assembly are aiming for net-zero by 2030.
Humans risk living in an empty world, warns UN biodiversity chief
Humanity will have given up on planet Earth if world leaders cannot reach an agreement this year to stop the mass extinction of wildlife and destruction of life-supporting ecosystems, the United Nation's new biodiversity chief has warned.
Ellen MacArthur Foundation boss: Natural Restoration 'hardest' part of circular economy shift
EXCLUSIVE: Against a backdrop of wildfires and growing climate activism, the chief executive of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation has called on businesses to develop holistic action plans to combat the complex challenge of restoring natural systems.
UN draft plan sets 2030 target to avert Earth's sixth mass extinction
Almost a third of the world's oceans and land should be protected by the end of the decade to stop and reverse biodiversity decline that risks the survival of humanity, according to a draft Paris-style UN agreement on nature.
Reach 'peak meat' by 2030 to tackle climate crisis, say scientists
Livestock production needs to reach its peak within the next decade in order to tackle the climate emergency, scientists have warned.
Four green policy concerns Boris Johnson must address immediately
After achieving a Conservative Party majority in the 2019 General Election, Boris Johnson will now forge ahead with his Brexit plans. But, with climate and environmental standards featuring throughout the Party's manifesto, the returning Prime Minister will need to quickly address some key green policy concerns.
General Election: The key green policy considerations for climate-focused voters
As the public takes to the polls tomorrow to decide the next Government, edie lists all the potential impacts and ramifications of short-term and long-term green policy in the UK, helping those still undecided to cast crucial votes.
Multinationals get behind SDG food drive in UK
Fresh plans to drive forward progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the UK through a food programme have been supported by Nestle, Nando's, BaxterStorey, and other organisations.
1.9 billion people at risk from water shortages, study shows
A quarter of the world's population are at risk of water supply problems as mountain glaciers, snow-packs and alpine lakes are run down by global heating and rising demand, according to an international study.
Tesco commits £10m to combat deforestation from soy production in Brazil
Tesco has committed £10m over the next five years to fund a new initiative to transition to producing deforestation-free soy in the Cerrado region in Brazil.
Europe's environment 'at a tipping point', EU agency says
Europe faces environmental challenges "of unprecedented scale and urgency," according to a comprehensive overview of air, land and water ecosystems published on Wednesday (4 December) by the European Environment Agency.
Investors and businesses call for action to support deforestation-free soy in Brazil
A group of global investors and businesses, including Tesco, Mars and Sainsbury's, have signed a letter calling for the Brazilian Government and president Jair Bolsonaro to support a voluntary agreement that has limited deforestation from soy production in the country.
Flooding and coastal damages risking £12bn to UK economy
Rising sea levels, storms and flooding driven by climate change has placed more than £12bn of the UK's economy at risk, according to new findings from WWF which warns that almost 2.5 million homes in the UK will be at risk of flooding by 2050.
Gucci boss calls on business leaders to deliver net-zero supply chains
Gucci chief executive Marco Bizzarri has called on business leaders to sign up to a Carbon Neutral Challenge that sees businesses deliver greenhouse gas emissions reductions across their entire value chain in order to achieve net-zero emissions.
'To truly embed sustainability, businesses must redefine value itself'
EXCLUSIVE: As ever more companies strive for sustainability which stretches beyond the confines of a separate CSR department, they will need to explore ways to define success beyond monetary value.
Meet edie's 30 Under 30 Class of 2019: Rhea Horlock, NHS Property Services
This series profiles the members of edie's 30 Under 30 - a nomination-based community of 30 hugely talented young sustainability and energy professionals who have already achieved great things or are showing fantastic promise. Next up: Rhea Horlock, CSR manager at NHS Property services.
World's largest seafood firms pledge to tackle abandoned plastic fishing gear
A coalition of ten of the world's biggest seafood companies have joined a scheme connecting businesses, non-profits, scientists and public sector bodies in a bid to tackle the 640,000 tonnes of fishing gear abandoned in the world's oceans each year.
Optimistic but lacking action: Green groups offer mixed reaction to Environment Bill
The Environment Bill has been published today and the reaction is already in from the UK's green business community on the legislation and its impact on corporate sustainability.
Deposit return schemes and biodiversity net-gain: Raft of new policies unveiled in Environment Bill
The UK Government has launched its new governance system on issues covering clean air, waste management and plastics pollution, natural capital approaches and water stewardship, in the form of the long-awaited Environment Bill.
Green Party declares 'nature emergency'
The Green Party has built on its declaration of a 'climate emergency' by declaring a 'nature emergency' in response to biodiversity decline.
Post-Brexit threats to green policy intensifying, think tank warns
UK think tank Greener UK has warned that threats to environmental regulations related to climate change, waste, air quality and natural resources are escalating due to the uncertainty surrounding Brexit.
Banks representing one-third of global market to align with Paris climate targets
A coalition of 130 banks, representing one-third of the worldwide banking sector, have committed to aligning their actions with the aims of the Paris Agreement.
HP to fund restoration of 200,000 acres of forest
HP is set to invest $11m in forest restoration, protection and management schemes over the next five years, as part of its overarching ambition to ensure that every page printed using an HP printer will be "forest positive".
Green New Deal Bill launched by Lucas and Lewis
The full version of the so-called Green New Deal bill has been released by Green MP Caroline Lucas and Labour MP Clive Lewis as climate strikes continue across the UK.
Net-zero cities can unlock $24tn opportunity, report finds
Investment into readily available technologies could reduce emissions from cities by 90% by 2050, while creating a global economic benefit worth almost $24trn (£19trn), a new report has claimed.
Nestlé sets net-zero climate goal for 2050
Nestlé has today (12 September) unveiled wide-sweeping plans to enhance carbon sequestration, procure 100% renewable electricity and launch more food and drink products that have improved environmental footprints, as part of an overall goal to reach net-zero emissions by 2050.
Sustainable Business Covered podcast: Peas Please and planet-saving diets
The latest episode of the Sustainable Business Covered podcast sees edie's content editor Matt Mace explore the rising popularity of veganism to help save the planet, featuring exclusive interviews with PwC, BOL Foods and Soylent.
September Spending Round: Javid promises green 'infrastructure revolution'
Sajid Javid has committed to helping the Government fund a green "infrastructure revolution" during his first solo Commons speech since becoming Chancellor of the Exchequer.
Benefits to farmers of global heating outweighed by losses, says report
Any advantages to European agriculture from a warming world will be outweighed by the losses from extreme events and environmental stress, leading to a probable large economic loss for farming in the next 30 years, research on the impacts of the climate crisis has found.
Brazil president to reconsider $20m Amazon fire aid, provided Macron apologies for 'insults'
Having originally rejected the $20m (£16m) international climate aid pledged offered at the G7 summit, Brazil's president Jair Bolsonaro has announced he could reconsider the offer, but only if French President Emmanuel Macron apologies for "insulting" him.
IEMA: Funding cuts threatening UK's green spaces and biodiversity
Government funding for bodies such as Natural England, the Environment Agency and National Parks has fallen steeply in recent years, leaving the UK at risk of failing to meet key green policy objectives.
Report: Move water to top of political agenda to deliver environmental and social wins
With more than half of the world's populations set to live in water-scarce regions by 2050, a new report from the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) has called on policymakers to place water stewardship at the heart of regional and bilateral policy decisions to create various economic, environmental and societal benefits.
UK water companies to plant 11 million trees to assist carbon-neutral aims
A host of major UK water companies, local authorities and NGOs have today (15 August) teamed on a new tree-planting initiative that will assist the delivery of a carbon-neutral water industry by 2030.
IPCC: Shift in land use crucial to avert climate emergency
The systemic ways in which global businesses are using land is a "major contributor" to climate change and must be radically transformed if the aims of the Paris Agreement to be met.
Earth Overshoot Day: What is the business case for one-planet compatibility?
Monday 29 July will mark Earth Overshoot Day - the day that humanity uses up all of the planet's natural resources for the year and the earliest it has ever occurred. In response, a new whitepaper explores how business can champion energy efficiency and the circular economy to become one-planet compatible.
Survey: Majority of Brits want 'urgent' policy action on climate change
The vast majority of the British public would like to see politicians take more "urgent action" to tackle climate challenges and mass biodiversity loss, a new survey has found.
'Radical action by 2030' needed to tackle Scotland's climate challenges
The head of Scotland's nature conservation agency has warned the country faces an "apocalyse" of flooded towns, dead forests and polluted rivers unless urgent action is taken to cut CO2 emissions.
Rewild a quarter of UK to fight climate crisis, campaigners urge
A quarter of the UK's land could be restored to nature, making a significant contribution towards cutting the nation's carbon emissions to zero, under a new rewilding proposal.
Natural Capital Committee: Biodiversity net-gain must not rely on offsetting
The UK Government's independent advisor on natural capital has criticised proposals put forward by the Department for Food, Environment and Rural Affairs (Defra) that would require developers to pay for biodiversity offsets in other regions if their projects result in habitat loss.
Innovation shift: Why radical change must focus on entire value chains
Current efforts to introduce new waves of innovation that address key climate issues need to be "scientific, scalable and systemic" with a focus on industry-wide collaboration, according to the chief executive of a corporate system's accelerator aiming to transform sustainability across 10 industry value chains.
'Spectacular failure': Green groups respond to government's Marine Strategy
Conservation and environmental lobby groups have heavily criticised the government's revised UK Marine Strategy, saying that politicians need to radically revise their plans to tackle the growing emergency.
UK urged to take lead on biodiversity as UN issues urgent warning
The British government has commissioned Sir Partha Dasgupta, a professor at Cambridge University, to write a report on the economic case for biodiversity as policymakers across the planet are urged to step up efforts to reverse the alarming decline of the natural world.
Three-quarters of UK FTSE All-Share firms 'highly dependent' on natural capital
Almost three-quarters (74%) of UK businesses listed on the FTSE All-Share Index have been dubbed "potentially highly dependent" on natural resources such as clean air, water and soil in a new study on nature-related business risks.
Shell commits $300m to conservation and carbon offset projects
Oil giant Shell has unveiled plans to invest $300m over the next three years on conservation and carbon offset projects in a bid to reduce its carbon footprint by up to 3%.
Pernod Ricard targets SDGs and regenerative agriculture as part of 2030 goals
Beverage giant Pernod Ricard has today (3 April) launched a new sustainability roadmap aligned to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that commits to ambitious new targets relating to regenerative agriculture and biodiversity, recyclable packaging and a science-based carbon target.
Aldi targets 100% sustainably sourced soy by 2025
Supermarket chain Aldi has pledged to source 100% sustainably certified soy across its supply chain by 2025, including soy used as animal feed.
Why General Mills want supply chains to become regenerative stewards of the environment
Faced with a growing global population and strains on depleted natural resources, US food producer General Mills plans to equip its supply chain farmers with the knowledge and tools to move from practices that mitigate environmental degradation to regenerative approaches.
UK will miss almost all its 2020 nature targets, says official report
The UK will miss almost all the 2020 nature targets it signed up to a decade ago, according to a report by the Government's official advisers.
Alpro and WWF pilot new nature-focused science-based target scheme
A pilot project has been set up to take science-based targets to the next level and "respect planetary boundaries" by WWF and food and drink firm Alpro.
Emma Howard Boyd reappointed as Environment Agency chair
Emma Howard Boyd has been reappointed as the chair of the Environment Agency (EA) by Secretary of State Michael Gove, with her second term set to run until September 2022.
WATCH: Michael Gove, Claire Perry and Paul Polman support school climate strikes
Conservative MPs, Government Ministers and green business leaders have today (15 March) come out in support of students that are missing school and going on strike for a second time in the fight against climate change.
Fiddling the margins or a powerful signal? The green economy reacts to the Spring Statement
Chancellor Philip Hammond has today (13 March) unveiled new measures to champion biodiversity and drive resilience in the UK's housing stock as part of his Spring Statement, but reactions suggest the Government is still moving too slowly.
Spring Statement: Chancellor unveils biodiversity plans and low-carbon homes requirements
BREAKING: Chancellor Philip Hammond has today (13 March) pledged to implement legislation requiring developers to deliver biodiversity net-gain through all projects in his 2019 Spring Statement, which also includes a review into the economic benefits of environmental conservation.
Spring Statement: What can the green economy expect from Philip Hammond's announcement?
Investment in a national net-zero target? New energy efficiency measures for homes? edie previews the green-related announcements likely to be included in the Spring Statement on Wednesday (13 March).
Built environment sector calls for biodiversity focus in upcoming Environment Bill
A group of UK built environment businesses have penned a letter to Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond, calling on future legislation to boost economic growth through restorative planning that benefits the environment.
Plastics and biodiversity: Forum for the Future spotlights sustainability's biggest challenges
Global non-profit Forum for the Future has named plastic pollution and biodiversity loss as two of the "fundamental" sustainability challenges of the 2020s, arguing that governments and corporates have not yet adopted holistic, long-term solutions to these issues.
World's food supply under 'severe threat' from loss of biodiversity, UN warns
The world's capacity to produce food is being undermined by humanity's failure to protect biodiversity, according to the first UN study of the plants, animals and micro-organisms that help to put meals on our plates.
#ThisIsACrisis: 7 harsh realities of the global climate crisis
As humanity's negative impacts on the planet continue to grow, a new landmark report from the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) is warning that the time period we have left to avert an "age of environmental breakdown" is growing rapidly smaller. Here, edie rounds up seven of the report's key findings.
Agency protecting English environment reaches 'crisis point'
Thousands of environmentally important sites across England are coming under threat as the government body charged with their care struggles with understaffing, slashed budgets and an increasing workload.
Water companies urged to 'up their game' on pollution and natural capital through to 2025
The UK water sector has stepped up its environmental ambition in the current business planning period, but gaps remain when it comes to reducing sewage pollution incidents and factoring in the value of natural capital.
Government urged to address funding and data concerns for post-Brexit environment watchdog
The UK Government has been urged to equip any new watchdog for future environmental standards with adequate funding and performance measuring qualities, a new report from the National Audit Office (NAO) has claimed.
Yorkshire Water plants first of a million trees to help prevent floods
More than 14,000 trees were planted at Ogden Water last month as part of Yorkshire Water's "big goal" for the environment, which aims to create new "green infrastructure".
Just Eat's e-scooters and solar-powered smart homes: The sustainability success stories of the week
As part of our Mission Possible campaign, edie brings you this weekly round-up of five of the best sustainability success stories of the week from across the globe.
Defra launches call for evidence on 'biodiversity net-gain' developments
The Government is consulting on whether property developers should be required to deliver a "biodiversity net-gain" when building new housing or commercial projects.
MPs call for ‘watchdog with teeth' to oversee environmental standards post-Brexit
MPs have called on the Government to strengthen the commitments made in its 25-year Environment Plan in order to prepare for the event of a no-deal Brexit scenario, claiming that the UK is currently at risk of losing one-third of green legislation if no agreement with the EU is agreed.
Humanity has wiped out 60% of animals since 1970, major report finds
Humanity has wiped out 60% of mammals, birds, fish and reptiles since 1970, leading the world's foremost experts to warn that the annihilation of wildlife is now an emergency that threatens civilisation.
Heathrow Airport launches peatland restoration project to offset emissions
Heathrow Airport has invested almost £100,000 into a peatland restoration project near Salford, in a move that will push the airport towards its carbon-neutrality aim by offsetting the carbon emissions of almost 64,000 passenger flights to New York.
Most of Europe's rivers and lakes fail water quality tests - report
The vast majority of Europe's rivers, lakes and estuaries have failed to meet minimum ecological standards for habitat degradation and pollution, according to a damning new report.
Mondelez to use 100% sustainably-sourced wheat in EU
Confectionary giant Mondelēz International has committed to making 100% of the biscuits it manufactures in the European Union with sustainably-sourced wheat, a 40% increase from the company's biscuit production last year.
Sustainability 'imagineered': The Disney-led resort powered by geothermal energy
edie's senior reporter Matt Mace travels to the outskirts of Paris to uncover how Villages Nature Paris tapped into geothermal energy to deliver on a holistic 10-step sustainability framework.
Why you need to know what the animals in your supply chain are being fed
Earlier this month, sitting in a packed room full of food and feed industry executives from around the world, we spoke together with leading retailers on why animal feed is one of the critical sustainability issue of our times.
How technology can power our connection to the natural world
Humanity continues to find new ways of pushing the limits of technology, to discover the edges of innovation. Whether it's sending a car into space, exploring the potential for nanotechnology to support hyper-targeted drug therapies, creating virtual worlds or an artificial intelligence that responds to our spoken commands; most of these ideas were solely in the domain of science fiction 30 years ago.
Paving the way to a better built environment
Construction businesses lie at the juncture of some of the world's most pressing environmental and societal challenges. Here, the UK Green Building Council's chief executive Julie Hirigoyen charts the progress being made across the industry in the key areas of climate change, resource use, nature and biodiversity, health & wellbeing and socio-economic impact.
Land degradation threatens human wellbeing, major report warns
Land degradation is undermining the wellbeing of two-fifths of humanity, raising the risks of migration and conflict, according to the most comprehensive global assessment of the problem to date.
How business can play a part in the new Northern Forest
The Government has announced £5.7 million to kick start the planting of 50 million trees across the North of England through an ambitious new plan by the Woodland Trust and Community Forests. The project is set to deliver huge benefits, and businesses and large organisations will have a vital role to play.
The 25 Year Environment Plan: reasons to look on the bright side
After months of anticipation the UK's 25 Year Environment Plan was launched yesterday. Unlike some others, I believe it is a positive step. These are my top reasons to look on the bright side:
25-year Environment Plan: UK unveils long-term strategy for 'greener future'
Theresa May has today outlined a vision for a "cleaner, greener Britain", unveiling the long-awaited 25-year Environment Plan which pledges to eliminate all "avoidable" plastic waste by the end of 2042.
Michael Gove: UK to reward farmers for environmental practices post-Brexit
Michael Gove will indicate that the UK will replace the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) post-Brexit with a system that gives subsidies to farmers who try to enhance the natural environment.
Redrow targets biodiversity 'net gain' at new developments
UK housebuilder Redrow has announced that a "net gain" approach to biodiversity will be adopted across all new developments, following a trial period that successfully enhanced the ecological land value of certain projects.
Imbuing your brand with purpose – two practical principles
Creating a brand purpose vision or narrative is a challenge. Usually there are a number of different audiences to engage, both internally and externally, the purpose must 'fit' the material issues facing the brand and it must have an impact which lasts.
Tony Juniper takes on lead advocacy role at WWF
WWF has announced that prominent conservationist Tony Juniper has joined the green organisation as executive director for advocacy and campaigns.
What the world needs now, is sustainable soy
Producing more responsible - and certified - soy will be critical in protecting the Cerrado region of Brazil.
Deep breath: change the conversation
Air quality in our towns and cities is a critical issue but action and progress will be sorely limited unless we grasp the challenge of awareness, behaviour and pro-active communications.
Food and beverage giants agree to strengthen supply chain management
Companies such as Unilever, Mars and PepsiCo are part of a new collaborative partnership aiming to develop free science-based decision tools that improve farm-level sustainability reporting metrics and data collection.
Velvet owner accused of sourcing pulp from protected forest region
The owner of well-known UK-based toilet paper brands Velvet and Cushelle is facing accusations of sourcing pulp from protected areas of the Great Northern Forest in Sweden.
The Body Shop rolls out first Bio-Bridge project in India
From September to the end of October, every product purchase and transaction from customers visiting The Body Shop stores will help protect threatened elephants and gibbons in India, as part of the company's latest Bio-Bridges programme.
Science and context: Inside Diageo's refreshed Water Blueprint
With water and sanitation at the core of sustainable development, edie speaks with one of the world's largest drinks businesses to explore how it is accelerating progress towards achieving Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6: Clean Water and Sanitation for All.
World Economic Forum calls on business chiefs to set net-zero targets
All business leaders and companies attending the World Economic Forum in Davos this week have been asked to make public commitments to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 or earlier.
Sector insight: The state of sustainability 2018
This exclusive insight report explores the key drivers, challenges and opportunities facing sustainable business in the UK.
Agriculture Bill introduced, outlining sweeping post-Brexit environmental measures
The Department for Food, the Environment and Rural Affairs' (Defra) Agriculture Bill has been introduced today (16 January), confirming the Government's plans for rewarding farmers that make environmental improvements and safeguarding green standards post-Brexit.
Humanity's biggest risks are 'climate-related, not economic': World Economic Forum
The five biggest risks to humanity and the planet in terms of likelihood and severity are climate-related, the World Economic Forum's (WEF) latest analysis has concluded.