Monthly Archives: January 2009

After Capitalism: PROUT as a Sustainable, Democratic Economic Model

dadamaheshvarananda

Today, Dada Maheshvarananda meditates on the alternative economic model of Progressive Utilization Theory, or PROUT. Joe Romm of Climate Progress analyzes the climate resolve of the Obama Administration. Lisa Woll of the Social Investment Forum proposes an Office for Innovation in Corporate Social Responsibility to the Obama Administration.  And auto and environment expert Jim Motavalli comments on the significance of President Obama’s executive order directing the EPA to reconsider its refusal to grant California a waiver allowing it to regulate greenhouse gases from autos.

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Lisa Woll Proposes Federal Office of CSR Innovation

lisawollThe Social Investment Forum (SIF) submitted a letter to President Obama listing a series of policy proposals, from proxy access allowing shareholders to nominate board candidates to “say on pay” giving investors a vote on executive compensation.  SIF also urges the Obama Administration to establish an Office for Innovation in Corporate Social Responsibility or CSR.  This idea dates back to the early 2000s, propounded first by Susan Aaronson at the Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise, and supported by a Government Accountability Office report finding major lack of coordination on federal CSR initiatives.  SIF CEO Lisa Woll explains the rationale behind the recommendations, and how they will promote advancement toward sustainability.

ViewPoint: Jim Motavalli on Cars and Carbon

Jim Motavalli
Jim Motavalli

Jim Motavalli blogs on green matters for The Daily Green and Mother Nature Network and he blogs about cars in the New York Times “Automobiles” section.  He was also a long-time editor for E–the Environmental Magazine, where he continues as a contributing writer. Motavalli combines his passion for autos and environment in his book, FORWARD DRIVE: The Race To Build Clean Cars for the Future. He thinks its time for the auto industry to wake up and smell the coffee. In his Sea Change ViewPoint commentary, he discusses the significance of President Barack Obama’s executive order directing the Environmental Protection Agency to reconsider its refusal to grant California a waiver allowing it to regulate greenhouse gases from cars and trucks.

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Joe Romm on Obama’s Climate Resolve

Joe Romm
Joe Romm

In his first week in office, President Obama seemed to hit the ground running on climate change policy and support for a greener economy. But some say that while his efforts are a good first step, they’ll have to be followed up with much stronger measures to really do the job. We caught up with Joe Romm of the blog Climate Progress for some perspective on Obama’s first week. In addition to giving an overview, Romm also talked about an important–and frightening–new study from the NOAA that underscores the urgency of Obama’s moves.

Joe Romm worked on environmental policy under the Clinton Administration and is the author of HELL AND HIGH WATER: Global Warming, the Solution and the Politics. His blog Climate Progess is a project of the Center for American Progress.

Clean Energy Connections

philgiudicekevindoyleAt the Clean Energy Connections Conference in November 2008, Sea Change Radio Co-Host Francesca Rheannon spoke with Massachusetts Commissioner of Energy Resources Phil Guidice about the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and state-level clean energy initiatives. She also interviewed Kevin Doyle, co-chair of the workforce development group of the New England Clean Energy Council, about the importance for low income people to have a voice at the table in developing the clean energy economy. For the News Analysis, Rheannon and Co-Host Bill Baue speak with Elizabeth Kolbert about her New Yorker profile of Green for All Founding President Van Jones entitled “Greening the Ghetto.” And Francesca brings us a modest proposal for funding energy efficiency in this week’s ViewPoint. Continue reading

Elizabeth Kolbert on Greening the Ghetto

elizabethkolbertGreening the Ghetto” is the title of Elizabeth Kolbert’s profile of Van Jones in a recent New Yorker. The piece traces Van Jones’ development from a civil rights activist to a green collar jobs guru. Kolbert quotes Jones saying “Sometimes a breakdown can lead to a breakthrough.” She tells the story of how this resonates on a personal level for him. And, he’s also referring to this moment in history when an economic breakdown could lead to an environmental and economic breakthrough.

ViewPoint: Francesca Rheannon — A Modest Proposal

francescarheannonSea Change Co-Host Francesca Rheannon has a modest proposal for building demand for energy efficiency: a Home Energy Savings Equal Opportunity Program. Continue reading

Blog: Top Corporate Social Responsibility News of 2008

bb1Each January for the past several years, Bill has surveyed the top Corporate Social Responsibility news stories of the past year for CSRwire.com, where he is a contributing writer. Here’s this year’s edition:

A “green” recovery from economic and environmental meltdowns; the advent of Shareholder Activism 2.0 with binding resolutions at TARP banks; CSR adopts Web 2.0 strategies for sustainability reporting; is Wal-Mart really green?; and much more…

The economic meltdown of 2008 mirrors the simultaneous environmental meltdown fueled by the climate calamity – both share common roots, and many in the Corporate Sustainability and Responsibility (CSR) community believe they share a common salvation. Continue reading

Investing in Sustainability

nickrobinscarykrosinskyToday, Sea Change Radio talks with Nick Robins of HSBC and Cary Krosinsky of Trucost about their book, Sustainable Investing.  We also visit the Responsible Investing Forum, produced in association with the Social Investment Forum, where we speak with Tim Smith of Walden Asset Management about shareowner activism and hear the excerpts from the keynote of John Ruggie, the UN Special Representative on Business and Human Rights.

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John Ruggie on Business and Human Rights

johnruggie

The mandate of John Ruggie as the United Nations Special Representative on Business and Human Rights, first extended by the UN Human Rights Council in 2005, was recently extended another three years.  We hear excerpts today from Ruggie’s keynote address earlier this week at the Responsible Investing Forum, which will post the complete talk on its website in the near future.