new business models
Waitrose Unpacked: Supermarket unveils next steps for plastic-busting refill scheme
After trials of packaging-free, refillable products proved popular with shoppers and reduced the supermarket's plastic footprint, Waitrose & Partners is planning to make the format easier to use - and to roll it out to more stores in future.
Exeter to play host to UK's first national circular economy 'hub'
UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) is investing £3.5m to create a new circular economy hub at the University of Exeter, which will be used to coordinate research and development across the country.
Hard coding sustainability action into governance structures
We are surrounded by enormous challenges but the mood has changed and 2021 comes with an expectation of progress. Amanda Powell-Smith of Forster Communications and Klara Kozlov of CAF discuss why sustainability leaders need to look at whether their organisation has the right governance structures in place to enable brave intentions to become reality.
Veganuary: Asda unveils plant-based 'butcher' as campaign gets record 440,000 sign-ups
The Veganuary campaign has received a record 440,000 sign-ups to its 31-day challenge - and, keen to grab a piece of the plant-based action, the UK's biggest supermarkets and food-to-go chains are debuting new products.
Survey: Three-quarters of UK businesses turning to sustainability to bounce back from Covid-19
A survey of 1,000 UK businesses has found that more than three-quarters are planning to increase their sustainability focus in 2021, as part of their plans to financially recover from Covid-19.
Lessons from Project X: Redefining risk and fear in times of environmental crisis
People have often asked me - why Project X? Why now? The answer is simple: We simply cannot sit around and see business destroying our environment much faster than it can be regenerated.
M&S expands plastic-free refill offering as UK lockdown lifts
Marks and Spencer (M&S) has launched its packaging-free refill offering for dried, ambient and frozen foods in a third store due to growing customer demand.
To meet our net-zero targets, we must make lasting and significant changes to our business
Last week's announcement from the Prime Minister marked a critical moment in the UK's journey towards achieving the country's net-zero target. Sky's chief executive outlines what this means for the business.
Half of Ikea meals to be plant-based by 2025
Retail giant Ikea has pledged to ensure that 50% of the main meals offered in its restaurants, and 80% of the pre-packaged foods it sells, are plant-based by 2025.
Garnier launches shampoo bars with reduced environmental impact
L'Oreal brand Garnier is launching a new range of shampoo bars, packaged in 100% recyclable materials, that offer a 25% reduction in environmental impact compared to liquid shampoos.
Unilever to halve food waste, sets €1bn sales target for plant-based food alternatives
Consumer goods giant Unilever has unveiled a new "future foods" strategy that will see the company commit to halving food waste, improving nutritional standards and set a €1bn sales target for plant-based meat and dairy alternatives.
#SustyTalk: Counting down to COP26 with Chapter Zero, the Green Alliance and Fundación Avin
for Net-Zero November, edie hosts a special #SustyTalk video panel discussion on preparations for COP26 with the Green Alliance's Shaun Spiers, Chapter Zero's Susan Hooper and Fundación Avin and the UNFCCC's advisory panel's Ramiro Fernandez.
Iberostar targets carbon neutrality by 2030, eyes nature-based insetting
Spanish hotel giant Iberostar has outlined plans to become carbon neutral within a decade, underpinned by commitments to sequester carbon at its seafront locations.
Can business models act as carbon sinks to reach net-zero?
To kickstart edie's Net-Zero November, carpet manufacturer Interface's head of sustainability Jon Khoo reflects on the company's own ambitious Climate Take Back strategy, as well as discussing how business mindsets and models can "act like carbon sinks" to transform corporates into zero-impact organisations.
Action on plastics: Has Covid-19 stopped the refill revolution?
Many retailers and brands backtracked on plastic-free refill pledges in a bid to stop Covid-19 from spreading earlier this year. But are we really headed back towards single-use in the long term, or will there be a different "new normal" for packaging?
Burger King teams up with TerraCycle for reusable packaging pilot
Burger King will bring reusable coffee cups, soft drinks cups and burger boxes to restaurants in the US and Japan early next year as part of a partnership with TerraCycle.
P&G to launch refillable shampoo bottles in 2021
Procter & Gamble (P&G) will launch a refill format which uses 60%less plastic across several of its most popular shampoo lines in Europe next year.
Asda opens 'sustainability store' with refill stations and plastic-free groceries
Asda has installed refill stations, reverse vending machines and a vintage clothing aisle to one of its busiest stores, to gauge consumer attitudes and logistical considerations to more sustainable offerings.
What makes a sustainability leader? Meet award-winning brewer Toast Ale
With the 2021 Sustainability Leaders Awards entry deadline approaching, this new feature series showcases the achievements of the 2020 winners and reveals their secrets to success. Up next: The winner of our SME of the Year, Toast Ale.
Ikea unveils national buy-back scheme for used furniture in drive to become 'fully circular'
Ikea will start buying back customers' used furniture at stores across the UK and Ireland next month, in an effort to discourage "excessive consumption" and become a "fully circular" business by 2030.
edie launches new explains guide to creating a circular economy for electronics
Organisations looking to understand the benefits and opportunities of reusing and recycling used electronics can now access a free 'edie Explains' guide breaking down everything they need to know about preventing e-waste.
Credit Suisse raises $212m for 'world's first' ocean health impact fund
Swiss investment bank Credit Suisse has partnered with Rockefeller Asset Management to launch an impact fund that will finance projects improving ocean health, raising $212m pre-launch.
Tesco to increase sales of meat alternatives by 300% to reduce environmental impact of products
Tesco has become the first UK retailer to set public sales targets for plant-based meat alternatives, pledging to increase sales of those products by 300% by 2025 as part of an ongoing commitment to halve the environmental impact of the average shopping basket.
How partnerships can fast-track action against the SDGs
Mondi's group head of sustainable development Gladys Naylor outlines why partnerships are key to fast-tracking progress against the Sustainable Development Goals.
Why business must take the lead in our green economy
Ella's Kitchen's chief executive Mark Cuddigan outlines why returning to a sense of normality does not mean reverting back to business as usual, with his latest blog outlining the importance of corporate's spurring the green recovery.
L'Oréal launches bottles made from 100% recycled plastic and rolls out Maybelline recycling scheme
L'Oreal has confirmed that bottles of Paris Elvive will be made from 100% recycled plastic, on the same day that its Maybelline brand launched a UK recycling programme in partnership with TerraCycle.
Sustainability must be at the heart of C-Suite thinking for the 'new normal' in the wake of Covid-19
Covid-19 has been a wake-up call for many CEOs when it comes to sustainability. While many companies had already increased their actions and commitment to sustainability pre-Covi-19, the pandemic has seemingly acted as a catalyst for urgent action on climate change.
Patagonia: Regenerative agriculture is the next sustainability frontier for fashion and food
EXCLUSIVE: Patagonia's vice president for social & environmental responsibility has told of how she witnessed a "groundswell" in regenerative farming in recent months, of a scale that has been unprecedented during her 10+ years working across supply chains.
Report: World could reach peak plastic production in 2027, risking billions of dollars for oil majors
Global oil majors are planning to invest $400bn in virgin plastic production within five years - but much of this investment is at risk as governments beef up plastics and climate targets, and as consumers continue to push for plastic-free products.
9 in 10 sustainability professionals excited by green recovery opportunities, survey reveals
EXCLUSIVE: An edie survey of more than 240 sustainability, energy and CSR professionals has revealed that 89% believe the implementation of Covid-19 recovery plans is an opportunity to accelerate climate action.
The Green Recovery Business Roadmap
Much has been said about the need to deliver a green recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. But what new ways of working should businesses be exploring to assist with a just and low-carbon transition? This new report outlines EIGHT key considerations.
Timberland targets net-positive nature impact by 2030
Fashion giant Timberland has pledged to ensure that it has a net-positive impact on nature within a decade - a vision underpinned by commitments to regenerative agriculture and the circular economy.
Lego becomes Ellen MacArthur Foundation member in bid to spur circular economy progress
Toymaker the Lego Group has joined the Ellen MacArthur Foundation for a three-year period, as part of its efforts to increase product reuse and recycling.
HSBC signs up for new $1bn natural capital investment fund
HSBC has partnered with Pollination to launch what it is describing as the first large-scale investment fund focused solely on nature conservation and restoration.
Report: Global fashion sector will emit double its Paris Agreement limit by 2030
The global fashion sector is currently generating more emissions each year than the UK, Germany and France combined, and will fail to align with the Paris Agreement without transformational change over the next decade.
How can businesses accelerate circular economy progress beyond Covid-19?
Earth Overshoot Day - the date at which humanity has used all available natural resources for the year - came almost a month later in 2020, largely as a result of Covid-19. But how can companies innovate and actuate to deliver lasting, holistic reductions in their environmental impact going forward?
Available on demand: edie’s Earth Overshoot Day webinar
edie’s webinar exploring the circular economy to mark Earth Overshoot Day 2020 is now available to watch on-demand, featuring expert speakers from the Ellen Macarthur Foundation, DS Smith and Toast Ale.
Nestlé launches vegan tuna alternative after record plant-based 'meat' sales
Nestle has launched its first plant-based seafood alternative, a tuna substitute called Vuna, after its sales of plant-based meat alternatives surpassed £166m last year.
John Lewis kick-starts furniture leasing trials as Ganni unveils rental-only collection
Department store John Lewis has launched a new furniture rental service, in the same week that luxury fashion brand Ganni debuted a new denim collection that is available to rent but not to purchase.
Retail giants prepare to launch TerraCycle's 'zero-waste' refill service in stores
Following successful online launches, retailers including Tesco in the UK and Carrefour in France are planning to bring TerraCycle's refillable model, backed by businesses like Danone and Unilever, to stores.
Resale, repair and environmental labelling: Selfridges accelerates efforts to sustainably 'reinvent retail'
Selfridges has outlined a string of new commitments and pilot projects around sustainable materials sourcing, environmental communications and resource-efficient business models like repair, resale and rental.
Coca-Cola's plastic-free packs and V2G bus depots: The sustainability success stories of the week
As part of our Mission Possible campaign, edie brings you this weekly round-up of five of the best sustainability success stories of the week from across the globe.
Bus garage in London now hosting 'world's largest' V2G trial
A bus garage in North London has been fitted with vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology and 100 buses adapted for bi-directional charging, as part of what is being described as the largest project of its kind in the world.
John Elkington: Businesses should 'think like insurgents' to spur green recovery efforts
EXCLUSIVE: Many organisations will need to "regenerate" approaches to environmental, societal and economic business models in the wake of the financial damage caused by the coronavirus pandemic, according to Volans' chairman and chief pollinator John Elkington, who has called on companies to "think like an insurgent".
BP vows to cut fossil fuel production by 40% by 2030
BP has unveiled plans to transition away from being an oil company and to become an integrated energy company instead, headlined by a commitment to decrease fossil-based hydrocarbon production within a decade.
Google owner issues largest corporate sustainability bond in history
Google's parent company Alphabet Inc. has issued $5.75bn (£4.4bn) in sustainability bonds, in what it claims is the largest sustainability or green bond issued by a corporation to date.
BMW unveils new 10-year climate plan, vows to slash emissions per vehicle by one-third
The BMW Group has pledged to reduce its emissions footprint by one-third by 2030, on a per-vehicle basis, as part of a new climate plan underpinned by science-based targets and electric vehicle (EV) development.
DPD reaches 2020 fleet electrification target ahead of schedule
Delivery giant DPD has integrated the 700th electric vehicle (EV) into its UK fleet this week, meaning that more than 10% of its UK van fleet is now pure-electric.
2020 will be 'watershed year' for plant-based foods, investor coalition predicts
Investor coalition FAIRR has documented a tenfold increase in the plant-based-food-related assets its cohort manages over the past four years and found that four in ten food giants now have dedicated teams for plant-based products.
Vivobarefoot launches resale platform for repaired shoes
Shoe brand VivoBarefoot has launched an online resale platform for repaired and returned shoes, in what it claims is a world first.
Microsoft targeting one million tonnes of carbon removal by October
Microsoft has unveiled plans to capture one million metric tonnes of carbon from the environment by the end of the fiscal year, as part of its commitment to become carbon-negative by 2030.
Banking giants team up for Task Force for Nature-related Financial disclosures
AXA and BNP Paribas are among a group of 10 major banks backing a new initiative intended to help corporates measure, disclose and minimise their nature-related financial risks.
Putting young people at the heart of a greener post-Covid recovery
At the start of 2020, few of us could have predicted the changes and upheaval that we have experienced together in the first six months of this year. As we emerge tentatively from lockdown across Europe, we now face the challenge of recovery as local, national and global communities, with the many social and environmental imperatives that Covid-19 has brought to the fore.
WEF: Invest in nature-led Covid-19 recovery to reap $10trn economic opportunity
By embedding 'net-positive' nature requirements into their Covid-19 recovery strategies, governments and businesses could collectively realise a $10trn (£7.9trn) economic opportunity and create 395 million new jobs within a decade.
In the Loop: Tesco and TerraCycle pilot 'zero-waste' refill service in the UK
TerraCycle has today (15 July) launched its zero-waste shopping platform in the UK in collaboration with Tesco, after a delay due to Covid-19.
Environment Agency unveils five-year plan to bolster 2030 net-zero target
The Environment Agency (EA) has outlined its plans to boost climate resilience, improve natural resources and foster green growth through to 2025, after setting a 2030 net-zero target late last year.
VW to remove petrol and diesel vehicle manufacturing lines from key factory
Volkswagen (VW) is set to remove production lines for all internal combustion engine vehicles from one of its key factories this year, replacing them with electric vehicle (EV) production capacity.
Green recovery: Why resilience through the lens of sustainability is the only strategy
Business can never be the same again. If there is one lesson as we emerge from lockdown, it is how unacceptably vulnerable the machinery of commerce upon which our livelihoods depend is to shocks beyond our control.
#SustyTalk: Farfetch's Tom Berry on spurring circular economy models for fashion
edie's #SustyTalk interview series continues with Farfetch's global director of sustainable business Tom Berry, who discusses circular economy engagement and innovation in the fashion sector.
Fashion footprint: Farfetch's new tool to highlight the environmental impact of clothing
Luxury fashion platform Farfetch has launched a new tool helping online customers to choose products with lower environmental impacts, including secondhand goods and those made using innovative renewable materials.
John Elkington on Green Swans, Covid-19 and green market shifts
In a viewpoint written exclusively for edie's Mission Possible 2020 report, Volans' chairman and chief pollinator John Elkington discusses a new "age of miracles" whereby the once impossible belief that sustainability could dictate market actions now becomes the core lever of an economic recovery.
Oxford's zero-carbon homes and L'Oreal's eco-fund: The sustainability success stories of the week
As part of our Mission Possible campaign, edie brings you this weekly round-up of five of the best sustainability success stories of the week from across the globe.
L'Oréal launches €150m social and environmental fund to support coronavirus response
Global cosmetic firm L'Oréal has noted the need to focus on regenerating the environment while also supporting those impacted by the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus, and has responded by launching a €50m social fund to support vulnerable women and a €100m environment fund.
Green stimulus can repair global economy and climate, study says
Green economy recovery packages for the coronavirus crisis will repair the global economy and put the world on track to tackle climate breakdown, but time is running out to implement the changes needed, new analysis has shown.
Climate change optimism in a post-pandemic world
Nestlé UK and Ireland's head of sustainability, Anna Turrell, writes on the impact of the pandemic on a sustainable future.
Innovation and collaboration are vital for the success of plastics in the circular economy
As reported by edie, the European Commission unveiled its new Circular Economy Action Plan in March this year. The new plan outlined a sweeping set of commitments aimed at ensuring that circularity and resource efficiency act as a "prerequisite for climate neutrality" in line with the European Green Deal and Industrial Strategy.
Coronavirus: London pauses ULEZ as Birmingham asks to postpone Clean Air Zone launch
In the same week that Transport for London (TfL) suspended charges for the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ), Birmingham City Council has asked the UK Government for permission to postpone the launch of its Clean Air Zone.
Developers 'must go beyond biodiversity net-gain requirements': Report
Ecology consultancy EPR has unveiled a new support package for developers striving to meet the UK Government's housing targets while going beyond compliance with the new Environment Bill's biodiversity net-gain requirements.
Fashion industry must cut resource use by 75%, experts warn
A group of academics, businesses and thought leaders have penned a plan to help fashion firms align with planetary boundaries and address the climate and nature emergencies, headlined by a call to dramatically cut virgin resource use.
Positive Luxury: In the 'year of nature', greenwashing and incremental improvements won't cut it
EXCLUSIVE: As businesses strive to tackle the intertwined climate and resource crises, they must place nature and biodiversity at the centre of all financial considerations in 2020, a new forecast featuring input from Paul Polman, WWF and Paul Hawken warns.
Zero-waste is the new black: How SMEs are disrupting fashion's waste crisis
In the second of a two-part feature, edie's senior reporter Sarah George spotlights the businesses working to combat fashion's growing waste problem by pioneering truly circular systems in what is widely regarded as one of the world's most linear sectors.
General Motors unveils $20bn electric vehicle transition plan
General Motors (GM) will spend $20bn (£15.25bn) on electrifying its vehicle portfolio by 2025, as part of a new electric vehicle (EV) strategy.
M&S expands refill scheme amid growing customer appetite for plastic-free groceries
Marks & Spencer (M&S) is set to extend its packaging-free refill offering for dried and ambient products such as coffee and pulses this month, following a successful trial.
How online retailing is allowing fast fashion to thrive
In the first of a two-part feature, edie's senior reporter Sarah George explores how booming profits for online retailers are driving a fast fashion mindset in the UK that could undermine efforts to champion sustainability in the fashion sector, unless business and consumers find their voice.
'Encourage and enable': How Unilever is walking the talk on plant-based diets
EXCLUSIVE: After its report detailing 50 foods which consumers should eat more frequently to help tackle environmental issues went viral last year, Unilever's largest food brand Knorr has detailed its work to embed the campaign's aims across its own supply chain.
Glencore slams BP's net-zero target as it outlines measures to cap coal use
The chief executive of coal giant Glencore dubbed BP's 2050 net-zero target "wishy-washy" as he outlined how his firm will tackle scope 3 emissions through to 2035.
Can flexible workspaces help businesses reduce their carbon footprint?
As more companies move their corporate real estate portfolios to account for a growing flexible workspace market, a new report suggests that this could help improve staff health and wellbeing while cutting carbon emissions.
Purpose and profit: Unilever on how to drive benefits across the triple bottom line
Last summer, the chief executives of more than 180 corporates signed a declaration stating that the purpose of big businesses is no longer to simply generate profit for shareholders - that action must also taken to address social and environmental issues. But how can businesses without purpose "built-in" begin this transformation?
10 ways business leadership will evolve during a crucial decade for sustainability
Sustainability experts and thought leaders were in attendance at edie's Sustainability Leaders Forum to outline how the role of business in a society battling social and environmental crises like never before will change.
In numbers: Are businesses and consumers ready for the circular economy shift?
A shift away from linear 'take, make and dispose' models is widely touted as a key requirement in the transition to a net-zero, more resource-efficient world. But how prepared are businesses and individuals to make that shift, and what barriers are stopping circularity?
WATCH: Jonathon Porritt's inspiring Lifetime Achievement Award acceptance speech
edie's Lifetime Achievement Award-winner Jonathon Porritt, founder-director of Forum for the Future, delivered a rousing call to action to the private sector to "recarbonise" the planet by forging partnerships that pull carbon out of the atmosphere and assist with the ongoing net-zero transition.
Seven top tips for kick-starting your organisation's net-zero transition
Last year, dozens of 'climate emergency' declarations were made by governments, local authorities, political parties and businesses. But how can sustainability, CSR and energy professionals help their organisations respond to these declarations with ambitious, impactful and long-lasting actions?
Green bond issuance soared to $185bn in 2019, report reveals
Global green bond issuance last year reached an all-time high in terms of both individual bonds issued and collective value issued, global law firm Linklaters has concluded.
Carmakers renew calls for low-carbon revolution as grim sales figures loom
Some of the EU's largest auto players have called once for a mass rollout of electric vehicle (EV) recharging points and refuelling stations for fuels like hydrogen, as the industry offered up more clues as to how it intends to lessen its climate impact.
Reshape economy to fight climate crisis, says Prince Charles
The Prince of Wales has urged business and political leaders at Davos to embrace a radical reshaping of economies and markets in order to tackle the climate crisis.
'Transformation through transparency': How Microsoft will collaborate to meet its carbon-negative goals
EXCLUSIVE: As it strives to meet its boldest sustainability target to date - becoming "carbon-negative" by 2030 - Microsoft will need to forge innovative collaborations with businesses across and beyond its supply chain.
Bold targets and lifecycle assessments: Experts outline key drivers to combat single-use plastics
Sustainability experts from Sky, Surfdome and Nestlé have outlined how bold aspirations that target problematic plastics through the broader view of climate change can help spur the private sector towards a circular economy.
Corporates failing to make circular economy transition, damning report finds
More than 100 billion tonnes of virgin materials are being consumed annually by business, with progress to boost reuse and recycling rates stagnating, a damning new report has concluded.
Asda to pilot packaging-free, refillable versions of popular groceries
Asda will begin trialling packaging-free, refillable versions of some of its most popular products in May, the supermarket has confirmed today (16 January).
Ellen MacArthur Foundation boss: Natural Restoration 'hardest' part of circular economy shift
EXCLUSIVE: Against a backdrop of wildfires and growing climate activism, the chief executive of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation has called on businesses to develop holistic action plans to combat the complex challenge of restoring natural systems.
Ellen MacArthur Foundation unveils 'landmark' digital tool to help businesses track circular economy progress
The Ellen MacArthur Foundation has today (14 January) launched a new digital tool which enables businesses of all sizes and sectors to measure their contribution to the circular economy and identify ways in which to close the loop further.
Servitisation and social media storytelling: How retailers are approaching sustainability in 2020
January is now probably just as synonymous with retail discounts as it is with New Year's resolutions. But following a year of unprecedented climate activism, how are retailers planning to increase sustainability action and embed a 'purpose-beyond-profits' approach in 2020?
Electric car registrations surged to record levels in 2019
More electric cars were registered in the UK during 2019 than any other year to date, as diesel car registrations fell by more than one-fifth on a year-on-year basis.
Veganuary: Fast food giants launch plant-based meals as red meat sales plummet
Food-to-go giants including Greggs, KFC and McDonald's have all launched new plant-based options to mark Veganuary, after supermarkets recorded a plunge in meat sales which looks set to continue into 2020.
How has pop culture responded to the climate emergency in 2019?
From Coldplay cancelling their tour until they can find a carbon-neutral option, to James Bond producers debuting the spy's first fully electric car, all the signs point to sustainability shaping pop culture. But how deep does this impact run, and what's in store for 2020?
Reach 'peak meat' by 2030 to tackle climate crisis, say scientists
Livestock production needs to reach its peak within the next decade in order to tackle the climate emergency, scientists have warned.
Car giants 'driving with the brakes on' towards climate goals, report warns
The world's 25 largest car manufacturers are collectively failing to act in line with the Paris Agreement in terms of both electrifying their portfolios and strengthening climate governance, new analysis from CDO and the World Benchmarking Alliance (WBA) has warned.
UN appoints Mark Carney to help finance climate action goals
Mark Carney has been appointed as UN special envoy for climate action and finance as he prepares to step down as governor of the Bank of England in January.
Black Friday isn’t dead (yet) – but it is evolving rapidly
As climate change and resource efficiency climb the public agenda, declarations that Black Friday is "dead" are abound. But with shoppers saying they want to spend more than last year and circular business models emerging at a pace, it's probably time for a rebrand rather than a post-mortem, edie's senior reporter Sarah George argues.
Green Friday: The retailers championing sustainability over spending for Black Friday 2019
Today (29 November) is Black Friday, the biggest sales event of the year. But with consumers increasingly prioritising purpose over profit and climate change climbing the ranking of public priorities, some retailers are taking note and using the occasion to champion resource efficiency, social sustainability and environmental conservation.