It is not often that ethical investment features on the front page of the Financial Times, but the critical comments made by Justin Welby, the 106th Archbishop of Canterbury, on the activities of the so-called ‘pay day lender’ Wonga, followed by the revelation that the Church of England itself has a small investment in the business, catapulted the practices of the ethical investment industry into the full glare of the media.
In late June I was lucky enough to be invited to speak at the ‘Convergence’ Conference in Paris. The conference (known as ‘Verge*’ in English-speaking countries ) brings together commercial leaders from large corporations and a group of social entrepreneurs. One of the key topics at this year’s conference was ‘collaborative consumption’ and the radical impact that this is beginning to have on established business models.
Last year Thames Water predicted that we would be reduced to using standpipes in London over the Olympics. They launched an advertising campaign to encourage water conservation, only to be rewarded by the wettest summer for 100 years and pictures like this one.
Pollution in China has reached such extreme levels that the authorities have proposed executing polluters.