Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability

Casino Workers to Wear “Green” Clothing

Reuters reports that uniform company Cintas Corp (Cintas) has introduced a new line of shirts for the gaming industry that are partly made from recycled plastic bottles. Reportedly, the clothing line also includes scrubs for hospital staff and polo shirts made from recycled materials.
Reuters: Recycled plastic bottles to become casino uniforms (9 June 2011)
(Source: Reuters)

Panasonic Announces Environmental Initiatives

Panasonic Corporation (Panasonic) has announced that it has joined hands with eight companies including Accenture, Nihon Sekkei, Tokyo Gas Co and Mitsui & Co to establish an eco-conscious smart city project called Fujisawa Sustainable Smart Town, which will serve as a “model project of an environmentally-minded city in action. The town will have approximately 1,000 households with Panasonic planning to “preinstall its solar power generation systems and home-use storage battery systems across the town, including homes, various facilities and public zones, which would be the first of its kind in the world”.
Panasonic’s media release #1 (26 May 2011)

In related news, Panasonic, Hangzhou DADI Environmental Protection Engineering Ltd, DOWA Holdings Ltd and Sumitomo Corporation have announced that they will establish Panasonic DADI DOWA Summit Recycling Hangzhou Ltd, a jointly-held company that will recycle home appliances and electronics in China. This makes Panasonic the first Japanese consumer electronics manufacturer to enter China’s recycling market.
Panasonic’s media release #2 (30 May 2011)
(Source: Panasonic)

P&G Signs Deal for Green Packaging

Reuters reports that Procter & Gamble Co (P&G) has signed a deal with ZeaChem to make the packaging for its products more environmentally friendly by “convert[ing] plant material and other biomass used for ethanol into chemicals for household products and packaging”. Reportedly, P&G has set a target of replacing 25% of its petroleum-based materials with renewable materials by 2020. ZeaChem reportedly purports to use a 250,000 gallon-per-year cellulosic biorefinery to produce the bio-based chemicals for P&G.
Reuters: Ethanol maker in deal with P&G for green packaging (31 May 2011)
(Source: Reuters)

Gulf Air Announces CSR Launch

Bahrain Online News reports that Gulf Air has announced the launch of its Corporate Social Responsibility Initiatives [CSR] for 2011. Reportedly, key areas of the strategy are “climate change and clean air, waste management, and community service through a program of research and development and education and outreach, developed in cooperation with external partners”. Among other things, the airline reportedly plans to screen a series of short documentary films on the Environment produced by the the United Nations Environment Programme on board its flights, which is expected  to be viewed by almost 3 million passengers.
Bahrain Online News: Gulf Air Launches Corporate Social Responsibility Initiatives for 2011 (3 June 2011)
(Source: Bahrain Online News)

Investigation Finds Basic Safety Measures Lacking in Massey Mining Disaster

An independent investigation has concluded that last year’s Massey coal mining disaster in West Virginia was manmade and could have been prevented if basic safety measures had been followed. The report stated that miners lacked training regarding both safety and hazard recognition. The report also called for both federal and state mining inspectors to be given more robust enforcement powers over the mines in their respective jurisdictions. To date, thirteen of the victims’ families have filed wrongful death suits against Massey while eight families have agreed to settlements. Massey estimates that its total cost of litigation could be close to $78 million.
BusinessDay: Independent panel finds Massey at fault in Big Branch blast (20 May 2011)
(Source: BusinessDay)