Economics and the Environment
Lambing season begins - in picturesGuardian Unlimited | 03 Apr 2011
Up to 300 ewes are lambing at Barracks Farm in Fetcham, Surrey. The farm is owned by the Conisbee family who supply their own butchers shops in nearby Horsley. The business has been run by generations of the family for more than 250 years.
Ethical investment: Flower powerGuardian Unlimited | 01 Apr 2011
It is good to learn that Kenya's rose-growing industry has been transformed since we reported on its damaging impactIn a world of many bad news stories, it is good to learn that Kenya's rose-growing industry, worth $500m a year, has been transformed since we reported, in 2003, on its damaging impact on the people and environment of the shores of Lake Naivasha.
UK slips down global rankingsGuardian Unlimited | 29 Mar 2011
The UK is rapidly losing the race to be the global powerhouse of the green economy, while other countries streak ahead in low-carbon technology investment and development, according to rankings published on Tuesday. Last year, the UK slumped from being third in the world in terms of investment in green growth, to only 13th place, according to a report by the respected US Pew Environment Group.
Budget 2011: Osborne poised to ditch CCS levyGuardian Unlimited | 22 Mar 2011
FT reports suggest budget will scrap plans for carbon capture levy in favour of electricity market reforms. Chancellor George Osborne is tomorrow expected to confirm that plans for a new levy on energy bills that should help fund three carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects will be ditched....
George Osborne must deliver a green budgetGuardian Unlimited | 21 Mar 2011
The chancellor must not bow to Treasury orthodoxy when it comes to the measures needed to build a green economy. When defending its deficit reduction strategy, the coalition government is quick to point out that it is a reforming government and not just about cuts. But this radical zeal seems to...
GlaxoSmithKline boss: firms shouldn't quit Britain for tax reasonsGuardian Unlimited | 20 Mar 2011
GSK chief executive Andrew Witty warns that drive for profits is undermining public trust in big companiesThe head of Britain's biggest drugs manufacturer, GlaxoSmithKline, has delivered a stinging attack on companies that shift their headquarters abroad in search of lower taxes, declaring that it is "completely wrong" for businesses to view themselves as "mid-Atlantic floating entities" with no connection to society.
How we engineered the food crisis | Henry MillerGuardian Unlimited | 20 Mar 2011
Thanks to dysfunctional regulation of genetic engineering and misguided biofuels policy, the world's poorest are going hungry. Food prices worldwide were up by a whopping 25% in 2010, according to the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation, and February marked the eighth consecutive month of rising global food prices. Within the past two months, food riots helped to trigger the ousting of ruling regimes in Tunisia and Egypt.
Is rampant consumerism ruining our lives?Guardian Unlimited | 17 Mar 2011
Prof Tim Jackson does not accept that wealth and happiness can only be achieved by continuous economic growth. He argues that our addiction to new products, services, brands – more and more stuff – is actually fuelling our fears and anxieties. In his influential book, Prosperity without Growth, he...
Eco-farming can double food output by poor: U.N.Reuters | 08 Mar 2011
Many farmers in developing nations can double food production within a decade by shifting to ecological agriculture from use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, a U.N. report showed on Tuesday.
Carbon Plan fails to claw back green credentialsGuardian Unlimited | 08 Mar 2011
Chris Huhne's big green plan contains some buds of promise - but most of them were planted by the last government. When his government's credibility was on the slide, Yes Minister's Jim Hacker always knew what to do. "We're getting unpopular – organise an initiative will you, Sir Humphrey?" And, at...
Homebuyers ignore efficiency labelsGuardian Unlimited | 02 Mar 2011
A Consumer Focus report found 79% of prospective buyers did not act on recommendations of energy performance certificates. Homebuyers overwhelmingly ignore energy labels designed to encourage greener homes, a new survey revealed on Wednesday. Consumer Focus carried out a survey to find out how useful prospective buyers and tenants found energy performance certificates (EPC), which vendors and landlords are legally required to provide when selling or letting a home.
Green economy needs 2% of every nation's income, says UNGuardian Unlimited | 21 Feb 2011
Global green investment drive 'would pay off in terms of jobs, cleaner air and energy use' Obama, Hu Jintao and big business back call for every country to contribute. The United Nations will call on Monday for 2% of worldwide income to be invested in the green economy, a move it says would boost...
Tougher EU climate goal could boost GDP: studyReuters | 21 Feb 2011
A tougher European Union goal for cutting greenhouse gas emissions could create jobs and boost economic growth by 2020, rather than slow it down as many EU governments fear, a study said on Monday.
Co-operative Group commits to ambitious ethical operating planGuardian Unlimited | 18 Feb 2011
Co-op aims to cut carbon emissions by 35%, increase Fairtrade product lines and invest £1bn in green energy. The Co-operative Group is launching an ethical operating plan that it hopes will set a benchmark for corporate responsibility on carbon reduction, fair trade and community involvement. The group, which employs 120,000 staff, also plans to increase its membership from 6 million to 20 million and double its support for green energy to £1bn.
The Treasury growls as Nick Clegg pushes the green agendaGuardian Unlimited | 17 Feb 2011
The Liberal Democrats want the green bank to be a proper bank. But Whitehall's powerbase is determined to frustrate them. The Treasury is the most powerful department in Whitehall, but it is busy making itself unpopular even by its own abrasive standards. Jeremy Heywood, the most judicious of civil servants, was recently heard to say that the government's attempt to create a new green bank had become a battle of "everybody against the Treasury".
What is the economic cost of climate change?Guardian Unlimited | 16 Feb 2011
Economics and climate change are both complex subjects that contain significant areas of uncertainty - especially when it comes to making long-term predictions. Inevitably, therefore, it's impossible to accurately predict with any certainty the long-term economic costs of avoiding or coping with...
What's on Defra's agenda?Guardian Unlimited | 15 Feb 2011
Damian Carrington analyses the key issues on the agenda at the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). Caroline Spelman's speech at the National Farmers' Union annual conference on Tuesday is the first by a Conservative secretary of state for the environment in 14 years. In her...
World Bank warns of soaring food price dangersGuardian Unlimited | 15 Feb 2011
A spike in global food prices has pushed millions more into poverty since last summer, said World Bank president Robert Zoellick. The World Bank has given a stark warning of the impact of the rising cost of food, saying an estimated 44 million people had been pushed into poverty since last summer by soaring commodity prices. Robert Zoellick, the Bank's president, said food prices had risen by almost 30% in the past year and were within striking distance of the record levels reached during 2008.
UK farmers' leader attacks government for lack of national food planGuardian Unlimited | 15 Feb 2011
Without a substantial strategy, the UK risks a growing dependence on imports, Peter Kendall tells conference. Rising food prices, a growing population and increasing pressure on natural resources mean the UK is in urgent need of a food strategy, the leader of the biggest farming organisation said...