The CSR Newsletters are a freely-available resource generated as a dynamic complement to the textbook, Strategic Corporate Social Responsibility: Sustainable Value Creation.

To sign-up to receive the CSR Newsletters regularly during the fall and spring academic semesters, e-mail author David Chandler at david.chandler@ucdenver.edu


Monday, March 30, 2015

Strategic CSR - False positives

This week's Newsletters will focus on some of the issues I have seen raised recently regarding climate change.
 
It is often challenging to distill the complex debate around the scientific evidence demonstrating human-induced climate change in a way that is convincing to those who are skeptical. This is particularly so given that many of you (like me) will be convinced that it is so obviously something to which we need to respond (and respond quickly). There are moments in time, however, when a ray of sunshine bursts through the darkness. During my holiday reading, I saw this quote from Arnold Schwarzenegger, which I think conveys, in his usual blunt manner, all that needs to be conveyed:
 
"If 98 doctors say my son is ill and needs medication and two say 'No, he doesn't, he is fine,' I will go with the 98. It's common sense–the same with climate change. We go with the majority, the large majority."
 
A similar message lies behind this YouTube video, ambitiously titled "The Most Terrifying Video You'll Ever See": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zORv8wwiadQ
 
The message in both cases is clear – rather than argue endlessly about minor details of scientific protocol, let's act. In seeking to protect the planet, the risks associated with a false positive (acting when the danger is less than expected) are far outweighed by those associated with a false negative (not acting when extinction is within the realm of possibilities).
 
Take care
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 

Friday, March 27, 2015

Strategic CSR - SRI trends

The article in the url below contains up-to-date data on the growth of the SRI industry:
 
"Sustainable, Responsible and Impact Investing (SRI) in the United States has grown substantially over the past two years. The total US-domiciled assets under management using SRI strategies expanded from $3.74 trillion at the start of 2012 to $6.57 trillion at the start of 2014, an increase of 76 percent, according to the US SIF Foundation's latest biennial survey, the Report on US Sustainable, Responsible and Impact Investing Trends 2014."
 
The chart accompanying the article speaks volumes:
 
 
There is nothing particularly counter-intuitive about these data and many of you will not be surprised to see the large increases. Nevertheless, it is always good to have empirical support using specific numbers you can relay to your students.
 
Other useful SRI information is available on sites such as this: http://www.ussif.org/sribasics
 
Have a good weekend.
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
The 2014 U.S. SRI Trends Report
By Cliff Feigenbaum
January 15, 2015
Green Money Journal
 

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Strategic CSR - BP

BP is not a company that currently features very prominently in most CSR advocates' list of favorite firms (with no one to blame but itself, by the way). The article in the url below, however, demonstrates once again that thinking about firms in terms of black and white (either good or bad) grossly oversimplifies the complexities of huge, multinational firms and the value that they create for society:
 
"It began with an anguished letter to an oil giant. The writer could do nothing to stop an 11-year-old girl who had joined petrol sniffers in a remote aboriginal settlement. Fearing that the child would not survive to her teens, the relative asked if the oil giant could develop a fuel that did not make sniffers high. That was nine years ago. By then, it was feared that up to 6,000 aboriginal children and adults in the impoverished desert lands of central Australia were sniffing petrol."
 
In response, BP developed a new low-aromatic fuel and introduced it into the Australian market with the specific purpose of solving this social problem (the article makes no mention of any performance-related benefits of the new fuel):
 
"First developed by BP, in response to the letter, the low-aromatic fuel, known as Opal, does not produce the 'high' of regular unleaded fuel. It was first rolled out in 2006 to scores of distant Aboriginal communities in the desert outside Alice Springs and rapidly cut the number of regular petrol sniffers."
 
It is worth reinforcing that this new fuel was first introduced in 2006, meaning that the process by which it was developed was initiated before that. This would have been during the "beyond petroleum" rebranding days, long since dismissed by CSR advocates due to Deep Horizon. The fuel has been so successful that the Australian government has decided to mandate the use of the low-aromatic formula in all gas sold in Australia:
 
"Until now, petrol stations across remote Australia have been free to decide whether they switch to the low-aromatic fuel, but because of its success, the government said [in December] that it would force those petrol sellers still holding out to switch to the new fuel."
 
Again, the point here is not to whitewash over BP's serious flaws (and their devastating environmental consequences), but reinforce the fact that profitable companies are complex entities that are made up of lots of good and some bad. While focusing on trying to fix the bad, we should not forget the lots of good that they bring about.
 
Take care
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
Anguished plea saves Aboriginal children from addiction
By Bernard Lagan
December 26, 2014
The Times
 

Monday, March 23, 2015

Strategic CSR - Society

The article in the url below uses some recent reports of bad behavior on planes to discuss what the author sees are broader trends in society at large:
 
"… there are few better showcases of Americans' worst impulses, circa 2014, than a 757 bound from New York to Los Angeles or from Sacramento to St. Louis. It's a mile-high mirror of our talent for pettiness, our tendency toward selfishness, our disconnection from one another and our increasing demarcation of castes. It's a microcosm at 30,000 to 45,000 feet."
 
The article is well-written and funny (easier to laugh when you are safely on the ground), but also highly insightful:
 
"Courtesy is dead. The plane is its graveyard. There's a scrum at the gate and then another scrum in the aisle that defy any of the airline's attempts at an orderly boarding process. There's no restraint in the person who keeps smacking the back of your chair; no apology from the parent whose child keeps kicking it; no awareness that certain foods, unwrapped in a tight space, turn one traveler's lunch into every traveler's olfactory reality. And nobody really communicates. Conversation between strangers becomes rarer as gadgets get better, enabling everyone to hunker down with his or her own music and own movies and own video games, to shrink the world to the dimensions of a smartphone's or tablet's screen, to disappear into a personalized bubble of ceaseless entertainment and scant enlightenment."
 
Of course, it is important to remember that exceptions do not make the rule. I fly quite often and, while I would not call human behavior at 36,000 feet exemplary, I rarely see the kind of behavior that the author highlights. Given the logistical complexities of moving as many people as we do every day, as well as the stresses and strains involved in being one of those people, I find it amazing that the commercial airline industry infrastructure functions at all, let alone functions as well as it does. Nevertheless, the article raises a number of questions that I think resonate in the context of the broader CSR debate and how our society is structured, particularly here in the U.S., to place the interests of the individual before those of the group:
 
"There's little sense of a common good, no rules that everybody follows so that nobody gets a raw deal. Instead there's an ethic of every passenger for himself or herself. The existence of, and market for, the Knee Defender, that device that prohibits the person in front of you from reclining, says it all. On second thought, no, this does: Immediately following news coverage of a flight that had to be diverted when two passengers scuffled over a Knee Defender's use, sales of the device reportedly increased."
 
Take care
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
Just Plane Ugly
By Frank Bruni
November 30, 2014
The New York Times
Late Edition – Final
SR3
 

Friday, March 20, 2015

Strategic CSR - Sustainable Development Goals

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs, see: http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/) are a set of 8 pledges that were set by the member countries of the United Nations and were to be met by 2015:
 
"The eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – which range from halving extreme poverty rates to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing universal primary education, all by the target date of 2015 – form a blueprint agreed to by all the world's countries and all the world's leading development institutions."
 
The article in the url below discusses the fate of the MDGs now that the deadline (2015) is about to be reached. Progress towards attaining the existing MDGs has been patchy—some of the goals have been met and others have not:

"The target of halving hunger, for example, may be missed – though not by much. In 1991, 23.4% of all people in the developing world were malnourished; more than a billion people went to bed hungry. By 2013, the proportion had dropped to 13.5%. Though the developing world had 1.7 billion more people than in 1991, 209 million fewer were starving. Over the past 22 years, the world has managed to feed almost two billion more people adequately – no small feat."
As a result of the impending expiration of the 2015 deadline, the United Nations launched a process to define the next set of MDGs (this time, to be relabeled the Sustainable Development Goals). This process has to be completed by the time of the UN's Annual General Assembly in September (when the new goals are due to be adopted):
 
"Over the next year, the world's 193 governments will come together to set new global targets to be met by 2030. The task amounts to this generation's greatest opportunity to translate high aspirations into concrete targets. But choosing the targets that will do the most good requires learning from current experience."
 
This process has generated two problems. The first, more straightforwardly, is trying to decide what these goals should be. Rather than the neat original 15 goals, however, this time things are getting a little out-of-hand:

"The problem is that the next set of targets is growing ever larger. The high-level panel suggested 59, compared to 18 under the MDGs, and the Open Working Group nearly tripled the total number again, to 169 targets."
 
Second, however, is more of a logistical challenge—how to measure progress towards each target. In other words, it is only worth setting a target if we can accurately determine whether or not it is subsequently met. This is much more challenging than it might seem:
 
"To estimate the number of poor in a country requires a household survey of consumption. But six of the 49 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa have never had a household survey, and only 28 countries have had one in the past seven years. For example, according to the World Bank, 11.92% of Botswana's population was poor in 2008. But these data are based on just one household survey – from 1993."
 
And, the larger the total number of targets, the more expensive it becomes to measure them all:
 
"[Morten Jerven of Simon Fraser University] estimates that carrying out even minimal data collection for all 169 would cost at least $254 billion – almost twice the entire annual global development budget."
Here's to 2030!
 
Have a good weekend
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
Measuring the Next Global Development Goals
By Bjorn Lomborg
December 22, 2014
Project Syndicate
 

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Strategic CSR - Scale

In spite of all the rhetoric surrounding climate change, there is plenty of evidence to suggest we are not even moving in the right direction (let alone making the kind of change that will actually make a difference):
 
"Greenhouse gas emissions by the world's top 500 companies rose 3.1% from 2010 to 2013, far off the cuts urged by the United Nations to limit global warming."
 
In all things CSR, scale is a huge issue. While an excellent model for the sustainable company, for example, Patagonia is not going to save the planet on its own. We need the largest companies to change the way they operate (see also: Strategic CSR -Scale):
 
"The top 500 firms by capitalisation accounted for 13.8% of world greenhouse gas emissions and 28% of gross domestic product in 2013, according to the report, drawn up by the information provider Thomson Reuters and BSD Consulting, a global sustainability consultancy."
 
Until we start seeing meaningful change on a scale that actually will make a difference, we are going to keep digging ourselves further into the hole.
 
Take care
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
Top 500 companies' carbon emissions rise despite calls for cuts
By Reuters
December 23, 2014
The Guardian
 

Monday, March 16, 2015

Strategic CSR - "The moral case for fossil fuels"

The article in the url below is a review of a recently published book, The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels. In the review, the author does a great job of highlighting much of the ignorance that underpins the argument used by many who protest fossil fuels. Not only are renewables nowhere nearly sufficiently developed to replace all our energy needs (and may not get there unless we introduce an appropriate market incentive, such as a carbon tax), but most also ignore or are unaware of the extent to which carbon is the foundation of almost everything we do. Essentially, without oil:
 
"… the country goes dark. Transportation stops. Schools, hospitals and businesses close down. We are left to grow our own scrawny vegetables and slaughter our own animals for meat. We cannot even text."
 
More specifically:
 
"… if all you had to rely on were the good intentions of environmentalists, you would be soon plunged back into a pre-industrial hell. Life expectancy would plummet, climate-related deaths would soar, and the only way that Timberland and Whole Foods could ship their environmentally friendly clothing and food would be by mule."
 
The foundation for the book's argument rests on the extent to which fossil fuels have made possible the economy (and standard of living) that we enjoy today:
 
"We use fossil fuels and their by-products in everything we do and rarely consider it a vice. A pang of conscience may strike us when we read of oil spills or melting icebergs. But not when we are sitting on a plastic chair, visiting a power-guzzling hospital or turning on our computers. To call fossil fuels 'immoral' is to tarnish our entire civilization and should plunge us all into a permanent state of guilt, which seems a bit strong."
 
In contrast to any arguments to the contrary, therefore, the book (and reviewer) suggest that fossil fuels are supremely virtuous:
 
"Mr. Epstein argues that our history with fossil fuels has been one of constant innovation and improvements in technology. Not only do we keep finding more sources of energy, nixing the predictions of those who say we are about to run out, but we find ever cleaner, more efficient ways to use it."
 
Take care
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
Go Ahead, Fill 'Er Up
By Philip Delves Broughton
December 2, 2014
The Wall Street Journal
Late Edition – Final
A15
 

Friday, March 13, 2015

Strategic CSR - Compost

The article in the url below contains one of the best recycling ideas I have seen in a while:
 
"A non-profit group in Seattle hopes to become the first organisation in the world to tackle overcrowding in cemeteries by turning human corpses into garden compost."
 
As the intrepid entrepreneur who devised the project (Katrina Spade, an architect) correctly notes:
 
"'The idea is to fold the dead back into the city, … The options we currently have for our bodies are lacking . . . from an environmental standpoint, but also, and perhaps more importantly, from a meaning standpoint.'"
 
More specifically, the idea is to convert dead people into "soil-building material." The project, which is aptly named the "Urban Death Project," revolves around the three-story facility ("the core") that Spade has designed and plans to construct with the $80,000 grant funding already received:
 
"Bodies would be inserted into the core after being wrapped in linen. … The body would then be smothered with woodchips and other carbon-rich material. Over several weeks a corpse would be transformed into about one cubic metre of compost, which could be taken by the family or donated to nearby farms or community gardens."
 
Humans are the only species on Earth that creates waste. This proposal would certainly be one way we can reduce that impact.
 
Have a good weekend.
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
Dearly Departed Sent to Compost Heap
By Rhys Blakely
December 22, 2014
The Times
 

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Strategic CSR - Architects

The article in the url below discusses the role played by professionals in society. It questions what responsibilities should be owed in return for the undoubted privilege of belonging to a profession. It raises these questions, in particular, in relation to architects:
 
"What are the ethical boundaries for architecture? Architecture is one of the learned professions, like medicine or law. It requires a license, giving architects a monopoly over their practices, in return for a minimal promise that buildings won't fall down. Raphael Sperry [a Bay Area architect] … thinks the public deserves more in return for that monopoly."
 
The article was prompted by a recent decision by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) not to sanction members "who design solitary-confinement cells and death chambers." The justification offered is that individual architects should be free to determine for themselves whether facilitating the state's machinery of death contravenes their personal values. Critics of the decision argue that architects, like the medical profession, have a broader responsibility towards society to, at a minimum, do no harm:
 
"Mr. Sperry and his organization, Architects/Designers/Planners for Social Responsibility, wanted the institute to adopt a rule similar to the American Medical Association's, which specifically prohibits doctors from participating in execution or torture."
 
The AIA's position is that, while it seeks to regulate the way that architects go about their business (serve their clients, act towards each other, etc.) it does not attempt to influence the nature of the buildings its members design. To do so, the AIA argues, "opens a can of worms":
 
"I imagined that [the AIA] was talking about other politically fraught buildings, like, say, nuclear power plants or abortion clinics. Mr. Sperry said there was a difference with death chambers. International human-rights treaties don't explicitly prohibit abortion or nuclear power, as they do execution and torture. The United Nations and other international human-rights organizations consider the death penalty a violation of human rights."
 
Sperry and his organization imagine a bolder role for architects in promoting social progress:
 
"This is an interesting moment, with echoes in the past. A century ago, movements like the Bauhaus, looking to improve design for the masses, emerged from a culture in which the widening gulf between rich and poor was sundering civil society."
 
The role of architects in designing prisons, the article argues, is one area in which the profession should be a force for social good, rather than an enabler of the destruction of life:
 
"… prison design is a civic cause for some architects who specialize in criminal justice and care about humane design. There is a lot of research documenting how the right kinds of design reduce violence inside prisons and even recidivism. Architects can help ensure that prisons don't succumb to our worst instincts … but promote rehabilitation and peace."
 
The debate is interesting – not only in terms of the boundaries of acceptable behavior within architecture, but in terms of the expectations placed on all professions. In essence, the article is discussing how we define a 'profession.' I have this discussion in my class in terms of whether or not managers are professionals (in the strict sense of the term). Our first instinct is to say they are, but when you stop and think about how a profession is defined and the responsibilities that accompany it (in particular, an ethical responsibility greater than the individual), you realize that managers are not professionals. A large part of the reason why managers have not become professionals, I think, rests at the door of business schools. The MBA should be the certificate needed to become a professional manager. Because business schools have adopted an idiosyncratic approach to the delivery of business education and avoided the opportunity to introduce meaningful standards and raise quality across the board, we have generated a system where it is not clear what it even means to have an MBA. One thing it clearly does not mean, however, is that the holder is a professional.
 
Take care
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
For Architects, a Debate Over Humane Prison Design
By Michael Kimmelman
February 17, 2015
The New York Times
Late Edition – Final
C1
 

Monday, March 9, 2015

Strategic CSR - Robots

The article in the url below makes an interesting point:
 
"A more automated world might, in a strange way, be a more humane one."
 
That is the article's concluding sentence, and it asks some interesting questions along the way about the increasing role of robots in our society and the ethical quandaries they present:
 
"Who, for example, is liable if a driverless car crashes? This is unclear, even though four US states have given the legal go-ahead for testing on public roads. … And what if a driverless car, in order to avoid a potentially fatal collision, has to mount the pavement? Should it be installed with ethics software so that, given the choice between mowing down an adult or a child, it opts for the adult?"
 
The article also discusses the rapidly increasing role for robots in war, which raises more immediate questions around life and death decisions. This is increasingly important because, for all the things robots can do as well as (if not better than) humans, "there are still capacities, such as moral reasoning, that elude them." For example:
 
"Scientists at Bristol Robotics Laboratory showed last year that a robot trained to save a person (in reality another robot) from falling down a hole was perfectly able to save one but struggled when faced with two people heading holewards. It sometimes dithered so long that it saved neither. Surely a robot programmed to save one life is better than a perplexed robot that can save none?"
 
The challenge of course is not only whether we can instill moral values into robots, but that, if we can, whose moral values should they be? The article raises this question, but does not provide an answer. Instead, the main point of the article is to alert us to the fact that progress is occurring whether we are ready or not and, in the author's eyes, it would be better to be involved in this debate and shaping it, rather than allowing Silicon Valley to plough ahead unrestrained:
 
"So artificial morality seems a natural, if controversial, next step. In fact, five universities, including Tufts and Yale, are researching whether robots can be taught right from wrong. But this is happening in a regulatory vacuum. Ryan Calo, law professor at Washington university, has proposed a Federal Robotics Commission to oversee developments."
 
If we can get the morality of robots right, the article suggests, the potential benefits seem limitless – progress that, ultimately, should:
 
"… challenge our assumptions about the superiority of human agency. Google Chauffeur might not instinctively avoid a pedestrian but it will not fall asleep at the wheel. A robot soldier, equipped with a moral code but devoid of emotion, will never pull the trigger in fear, anger or panic."
 
Hence, the conclusion that:
 
"A more automated world might, in a strange way, be a more humane one."
 
Take care
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
When a moral machine is better than a flawed human being
By Anjana Ahuja
January 31, 2015
Financial Times
Late Edition – Final
9
 

Friday, March 6, 2015

Strategic CSR - HSBC

In seeking to address the ongoing corruption and fraud scandal facing his firm, Stuart Gulliver (CEO of the British bank, HSBC) claims in the article in the url below that:
 
"It seems to me that we are holding large corporations to higher standards than the military, the church or civil service."
 
More specifically, he sought to deflect the attention being directed specifically at him:
 
"Can I know what every one of 257,000 people is doing? Clearly, I can't. If you want to ask the question could it ever happen again—that is not reasonable."
 
I couldn't agree more. That is one reason why CEOs should not be blamed as much as they are when firms perform poorly. It is also why they should not receive so much of the credit (and associated compensation) when their firms perform well.
 
Have a good weekend.
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
Standards for bankers higher than for bishops, claims HSBC chief Gulliver
By Martin Arnnold and George Parker
February 24, 2015
Financial Times
Late Edition – Final
1
 

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Strategic CSR - Lumber Liquidators

For those of you who have not yet seen Sunday's CBS 60 Minutes report on the flooring company Lumber Liquidators, it is worth a look:
 
 
As reported in the article in the url below, the 60 Minutes report identifies a number of transgressions in Lumber Liquidators' supply chain that contravene California's strict emissions laws – particularly in relation to formaldehyde:
 
"Shares of Lumber Liquidators Holdings Inc. fell sharply Monday, after a '60 Minutes' report alleged the U.S. retailer of hardwood flooring has installed Chinese-made laminate flooring in many American homes that contains far higher-than-accepted levels of formaldehyde, a chemical known to cause cancer."
 
Not only was formaldehyde identified in the firm's products (in contravention of state laws), but the company's suppliers were also accused of falsely labelling those products as compliant with industry minimum standards:
 
"… all laminate flooring carried by Lumber Liquidators bears a label indicating that it is CARB Phase 2–compliant, referring to the California Air Resources Board, which sets standards for formaldehyde emissions in wood flooring. Those standards were adopted by Congress in 2010 in a law that is set to take effect across the U.S. this year."
 
60 Minutes obtained much of its footage for the piece by posing as potential buyers at the Chinese companies that supply Lumber Liquidators. Employees at these companies openly admitted they were using cheap and illegal materials to save Lumber Liquidators money, while also misrepresenting the products as fully compliant with all U.S. legislation:
 
"Employees of three Chinese mills said they were using core boards with higher levels of formaldehyde to save the company up to 15% on price. All three mills also admitted falsely labeling products as CARB 2–compliant."
 
For its part, Lumber Liquidators has denied the accuracy of the report, claiming instead that the rumors were driven by short-sellers of its company's stock. Either way, this has been a tough week for Lumber Liquidators. In total, over the three days of trading at the end of last week, shares in the company dropped from just under $69 to just under $52. After the report aired Sunday, the stock dropped another 20% in pre-market trading on Monday, after which trading was halted by the New York Stock Exchange. By the time trading resumed later on Monday, the firm's share price was listed around $40, where it remains so far today.
 
Take care
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
Lumber Liquidators stock slammed by '60 Minutes' report
By Ciara Linnane
March 2, 2015
MarketWatch
 

Monday, March 2, 2015

Strategic CSR - Carbon tax

The article in the url below is interesting, not because it advocates for a carbon tax to reduce carbon emissions (that has been advocated by economists as the most effective tool to reduce emissions for many years), but because of the specificity of the numbers it uses to support its case:
 
"If a carbon tax were to be imposed next year, starting at $25 and rising by 5 percent a year, the Energy Information Administration estimates, carbon dioxide emissions from American power plants would fall to only 419 million tons by 2040, about one-fifth of where they are today. Total carbon dioxide emissions from energy in the United States would fall to 3.6 billion tons — 1.8 billion tons less than today."
 
The key to success is the incentive to which we, as humans, seem to respond most dramatically:
 
"By providing a monetary incentive, economists say, such a tax would offer by far the most effective way to encourage business and individuals to reduce their use of fossil fuels and invest in alternatives."
 
In spite of its probable effectiveness, we will not see a carbon tax introduced (in the US, at least) any time soon due to political constraints. What the article makes clear, however, is that this inaction is not preordained, but is a choice that we make as a society:
 
"Most important, perhaps, the Energy Information Administration's estimates make clear that the real constraint lies not in our ability to develop the necessary technologies but in our political will to deploy them."
 
Take care
David
 
David Chandler & Bill Werther
 
Instructor Teaching and Student Study Site: http://www.sagepub.com/chandler3e/
Strategic CSR Simulation: http://www.strategiccsrsim.com/
The library of CSR Newsletters are archived at: http://strategiccsr-sage.blogspot.com/
 
 
A Carbon Tax Could Bolster Green Energy
By Eduardo Porter
November 18, 2014
The New York Times
Late Edition – Final
B1