A beauty company puts Mother Nature on the board

It's been a big week of climate news. Here's a wrap-up of what's happening – in three minutes or less.

The WfC Editors
October 10, 2022
3 min read
A pristine river in the middle of a lush forest filled with pine trees

Welcome to this week's edition of WorkforClimate Weekly – a bite-sized wrap-up of what’s been going on in the world, plus some tips/hacks/actions you can take yourself.

How do we feel about fossil fuel companies using anthropomorphic lumps of coal to influence school children? That’s what we thought. Still, it’s a thing and Hector, the ‘friendly’, human-sized lump of coal, is certainly disturbing (on several levels). In other news this week, car manufacturers get caught downplaying their own emissions, a beauty company appoints Mother Nature to its board of directors (sort of), and economic headwinds threaten global climate commitments.   

Welcome to another edition of WorkforClimate Weekly.

News wrap 🗞️

Salesforce has released new data showing that 8 in 10 global workers want to help their company operate more sustainably, with 3 in 5 eager to incorporate sustainability into their current role. It’s a good reminder that the biggest untapped resource in the climate fight is right in front of us: everyday employees. The survey follows the cloud-based software company’s launch of a dedicated carbon offset marketplace.

Global car manufacturers’ emissions are, on average, 50% higher than reported, according to the latest analysis. Hyundai and BMW seem to be the worst culprits, underreporting their emissions by 115% and 80% respectively. How does it work? Well, creative accounting, mostly. Toyota, for example, calculates its stage 3 emissions on the basis that each of its cars will be driven just 100,000 kilometres. Yep, sounds legit. 

With the ACCC cracking down on corporate greenwashing, how can consumers protect themselves and shop smarter? Dr Vanessa Rauland has written a helpful op-ed this week offering some helpful tips for picking genuinely green companies. “The most important thing is that [businesses] are clear and transparent about their achievements,” she says. 

A beauty company has appointed Mother Nature to its board of directors… in a way. Aptly named soap and healthcare brand Faith In Nature has added a director to its board to represent the planet, rather than shareholders, giving the natural world a legal say in the company’s business strategy. It’s part of a small but growing trend to assign legal rights to nature. 

With global economic markets looking a bit wobbly, will climate change commitments get pushed aside? Or at least kicked down the road a decade or two? Short answer: probably. “Net zero is a pledge, it’s not an action,” says Vaughan Lindsay, CEO of carbon finance organisation Climate Impact Partners. “Seeing how well people stay firm on their net zero commitments will be one of the acid tests in years to come.” 

Take action 🎬

Every week, we suggest a simple action you can take to help shift the climate needle at work. This week’s a simple one: an emissions pulse check for your company. Using our free guide, you can find out how your business stacks up, carbon-wise, and where the opportunities are for improvement. Did we mention it’s free? 

Staff stories 🏃

What did our staff get up to this week? Well, Henry Pickering (our digital marketing specialist) and I joined a few thousand people and ran in the Melbourne Marathon! Just a half marathon for us this time, but it felt plenty long enough. Here’s a sweaty action shot (as proof).

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