The Co-op raises a £300 million bond to support the Fairtrade Foundation, energy supplier Ørsted launches a greener gas option for businesses, and it’s official – women are better with finances than men! Meanwhile, Sainsbury’s launches sustainable pea milk and plastic packaging that Brits sent to be recycled has been found piled in a 20 foot mountain in the Malaysian jungle. Lori Campbell rounds up the top sustainable stories of the week.
Co-op raises £300 million bond to support “sustainable” Fairtrade produce
The Co-operative Group has raised a £300 million bond to support the Fairtrade Foundation.
The sterling bond is categorised as “sustainable”, meaning that it meets the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. The proceeds will be used to ship Fairtrade products and produce new ones, as well as fund marketing.
The Co-op says the bond – which pays 5.125 per cent coupon over five years – is popular with financial institutions searching for ways to invest in more sustainable ways.
The Fairtrade mark pledges a minimum price for producers and workers in developing countries and is usually spotted on items such as bananas, chocolate and sugar. Over 1.6 million farmers currently depend on Fairtrade for a sustainable living, according to the Fairtrade Foundation.
It’s official – women are better with money than men.
Women are more financially responsible than men, according to a new report.
The study, by investment platform e-Toro, found women are more likely to know exactly how much money they have in their current and savings accounts than men.
It also revealed that men spend more money on impulse purchases, splashing out £65 each month on spur-of-the-moment buys compared to £54 for women. Women are also more likely to set a budget – and stick to it – than men.And 52 per cent of females said they are risk-averse with their money, compared to 41 per cent of men.
The study also found women are more likely to have both a current and savings account with their bank.
Ørsted launches greener gas options for businesses
Energy supplier Ørsted has launched two new greener gas products for businesses that are aiming to decarbonise their energy.
Since 2017, Ørsted has supplied its customers with 100 per cent renewable electricity. It is now adding biogas and carbon neutral gas options, which are designed to suit the needs and budgets of UK businesses of all sizes.
Ørsted ’s biogas product comes with guaranteed certificates of origin, so businesses can report near-zero emissions from their gas consumption in greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting.
For businesses seeking a lower budget option, Ørsted also offers a carbon neutral gas product. The carbon from a customer’s gas consumption is offset through investment in sustainable development projects, such as clean energy, water treatment and forest management projects.
This helps to counteract any carbon emissions, provide social benefits to the surrounding communities and aid progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals. All projects are certified via The Gold Standard or the Verified Carbon Standard, which is important for auditing.
Plastic that Brits sent to be RECYCLED is piled in a 20ft mountain in Malaysia
Plastic packaging that Brits sent to be recycled has been found piled in a 20 foot mountain in the Malaysian jungle.
Celebrity chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall discovered the mound of waste as he walked round the corner of a remote muddy track. He said: “It’s like some dystopian nightmare… a plastic planet.”
Millions of tiny ground-up particles of plastic also litter the area and are entering the watercourse, which is spreading the pollution to river and marine life. Eight million metric tonnes of single-use plastics clog up the world’s oceans each year, according to US environmental charity NRDC.
Even though most single-use plastics are sent to landfill, 80 per cent of them end up in our oceans via storms, drains and sewers, the organisation adds. These disturbing scenes will be shown in a three-part BBC documentary co-hosted by Hugh and Countryfile’s Anita Rani next week.
Sustainable pea milk launches at Sainsbury’s
Sainsbury’s has become the UK’s first supermarket to stock pea milk to meet the growing demand for sustainable vegan-friendly protein.
The move to bring pea milk mainstream comes after organic foods wholesaler Whole Foods began selling The Mighty Society’s ‘pea mẙlk’ in its UK stores in February.
Pea milk is made from yellow split peas, which are naturally high in the amino acid lysine (a building block of protein) as well as iron. It contains 8g of protein per glass (8 times more than almond milk), has 40 per cent less sugar than cow’s milk, and twice the calcium. It is free from dairy, nuts and soy whilst being high in fibre and low in saturated fat. It takes 100 times more water to farm almonds than peas and 25 times more water to farm dairy. It also isn’t actually green, it’s creamy in colour.