by Samantha Guidon*
Robert Stavins, Albert Pratt Professor of Business and Government, Harvard University. Courtesy of Stephanie Nam/Penn Law.
On February 27, 2013, Harvard University’s Albert Pratt Professor of Business and Government Robert Stavins came to Penn for a presentation entitled “Climate Change, the IPCC, and International Policy Architecture” as a part of the Risk Regulation Seminar Series, an initiative jointly sponsored by the Penn Program on Regulation, the Wharton Risk Management & Decision Processes Center, and the Wharton Initiative for Global Environmental Leadership (Wharton IGEL). Continue reading
Posted in climate, economics, Investing, Risk Management, Sustainability, Wharton IGEL
Tagged climate change, environment, leadership, Spring 2013, sustainability, Wharton
by Samantha Guidon*
On February 8, 2013, with an imminent Winter Storm Nemo on the horizon, over 250 industry leaders and key players in the water sector came together at Goldman Sachs in New York City to begin the dialogue on addressing water risks throughout the country. Students from the Master of Environmental Studies at the University of Pennsylvania joined the Wharton Initiative for Global Environmental Leadership (Wharton IGEL) team in attending this event to gain key perspectives from leaders in the water sector. Entitled “Water: Emerging Risks and Opportunities Summit,” the conference identified areas in need of improvement and discussed opportunities from various points of view. A welcoming address from David Solomon, Co-Head of the Investment Banking Division at Goldman Sachs, established the overall goals of bringing together capital, technology, and policy in order to determine best management practices within the water sector. Continue reading
Posted in ethics, Investing, reduce, resource use, Risk Management, Venture capital, water, Wharton IGEL
Tagged climate change, conference, environment, leadership, resource use, sustainability, water, water supply
by Candice D. McLeod*
On February 6th, the American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) held its 10th annual Renewable Energy Policy Forum on Capitol Hill. The event featured a host of industry, financial and government leaders, who spent the day discussing the progress of the renewable energy industry, from the industry’s current purgatorial state due to impending policy deadlines to the potential implications of the current fiscal and partisan climates.
The overall themes were clear – more financing options for renewables, renewable energy policy stability, and China setting the global rhythm.
Here are five main insights drawn from the forum:
- Renewable energy markets continue to grow significantly. Perhaps we should stop referring to them as “alternative sources” of energy
- Economic security -keep your eye on Iowa and rural America
- More policy stability, please
- More financing options -MLPs & REITs
- Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater
1. Renewable energy markets continue to grow significantly. Perhaps we should stop referring to them as “alternative sources” of energy
John R. Norris, Commissioner, U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) opened the panel Renewable Energy Market Growth with the statement, “[if] it wasn’t for an economy that’s walking with a limp and a dramatic decrease in natural gas prices, the renewable energy market would be twice the size.” Continue reading
Posted in Clean Tech, energy, ethics, Investing, Sustainability, Wharton IGEL
Tagged clean tech, climate change, energy, leadership, venture capital, Wharton
Post by Sharon Muli*
In some situations, the best way to spread sustainability is by not mentioning it. More specifically, by not talking about sustainability using the language of sustainability.
I heard about the experiences of several business leaders in sustainability while attending the New Metrics of Sustainability in Business Conference on September 27-28th, 2012. This conference, hosted by Sustainable Brands and Wharton’s Initiative for Global Environmental Leadership (IGEL), sparked engaging discussions among those in a wide range of roles who talk, or don’t talk, about sustainability. Below are some of the main points that emerged from the conference and participant discussions.
Consider your audience and the situation
As an individual interested in sustainability, a student studying sustainability, or an employee in a sustainability role, you would think that talking about it be beneficial. That may not always the best approach, however. It is important to consider the audience, the situation, and the intended outcome of a conversation. Continue reading
(Post by Caroline D’Angelo, IGEL’s Communications Coordinator and editor and Staff Writer for Oikos International) The Initiative for Global Environmental Leadership’s annual conference-workshop on April 26, 2012 was themed around “Greening the Supply Chain: Best Business Practices and Future Trends.” The conference featured presenters from corporations and non-governmental organizations who spoke about sustainable management of corporate supply chains. From technology to transportation, and deforestation to chemicals, presenters urged the audience to think of sustainable supply chains as a smart business move. (Read an overview of the best business practices from the conference from Student Reporter Sharon Muli.) This post provides an overview of the conference presentations and provides links to more in-depth discussion, interviews and slides.
Posted in energy, IGEL Greening the Supply Chain, Investing, reduce, resource use, students, Sustainability, Uncategorized, Wharton IGEL
Tagged closed loop, IGEL, radical transparency, solar, supply chains
Author Michael McCullough is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences. This is the introduction to his paper in the IGEL Student Research Briefs series. Click here to read the whole paper>> Opinions are those of the authors and not of Penn, Wharton or IGEL.
Water is an increasingly scarce resource due to booming population growth, increased demand and climate change. Many investors see global water scarcity as an investment opportunity. This ever widening gap between supply and mounting global demand is an obvious selling point for some investment funds eager to acquire an under-valued commodity. Unlike oil, gold or copper commodities, however, the basic supply-demand calculus will not necessarily yield predictable returns on water because of political risks inherent in charging increasing prices for a life-sustaining service. A successful strategy will seek to provide cost-effective technology enabling consumers to receive and enjoy the same level of water service while consuming significantly less water.1 Additionally, water-inefficient production processes, primarily in the agricultural sector account for the vast majority of water consumption, meaning gains in efficiency can do much to close the supply shortfall if increasing prices incentivize efficiency (Ghosh 2009; 2030 Water Resources Group 2009).