Eco-Libris: moving towards sustainable reading

New research warns that public health advocates must continue to monitor the CSR activities of soda companies and remind the public and policymakers that, similar to Big Tobacco, soda industry CSR aims to position the companies, and their products, as socially acceptable rather than contributing to a social ill. But is it talking about CSR or cause marketing?

Next time you order a book online, consider this: odds are increasing that the book itself hasn’t been printed yet. Welcome to the world of on-demand printing, where books live electronically on a hard drive somewhere until someone wants a copy.

Who knew men are so sensitive? Well, certainly not Kimberly-Clark (K-C). The company enraged many dads earlier this month with its new “Dad Test” campaign for Huggies diapers. The idea behind the campaign was as follows: “To prove that Huggies diapers and wipes can handle anything, we put them to the toughest test imaginable: Dads, alone with their babies, in one house, for five days.”

On Tuesday, while Israelis celebrated the release of Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier held captive in Gaza for five years by Hamas, the team of TaKaDu, an Israeli start-up had another reason for celebration. That same day their company was the “Company of the Year – Europe & Israel” in the prestigious 2011 Global Cleantech 100, organized by Cleantech Group in collaboration with the U.K.’s Guardian News and Media.

Today we continue with our Amazon week. After discussing if the new Kindle Fire and other new Kindles will contribute to making e-reading greener (it will), and comparing Kindle Fire with iPad 2 and Nook Color and see which device is greener (iPad 2), we’ll talk today about the impact of the new Kindle products on Barnes & Noble.

First, the bottom line: B&N is in trouble. Now let’s see why.

On Wednesday the Global Forum had an international gathering of business and political leaders in a unique virtual workshop-style discussion which focused on ways to create sustainable, profitable business growth around the world. The 2-hour meeting organized by the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP). The meeting took a realistic tone, bridging long-term vision with existing challenges.

It’s never boring with Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) around. I’m sure both fans and non-fans of the Republican presidential candidate would agree. One thing they might not agree on so much is her integrity. Critics especially like to point out major differences between the record of Representative Bachmann and the rhetoric of candidate Bachmann when it comes to the EPA.

Edward Glaeser doesn’t see the point in urban farms. Well, it’s not completely true – the Harvard Professor does see educational value in them for school kids, but that’s it. Last month Glaeser wrote an interesting piece on the Boston Globe about urban farms (“The locavore’s dilemma“), where he made a very persuasive argument that urban farms actually represent an inferior alternative from an environmental point of view. His main point was that devoting scarce urban land to farms and not to people will reduce cities’ density level, which will then cause the rise of carbon emissions.

TO DESCRIBE the woes of bricks-and-mortar bookstores is to join the dirge-singing chorus. Everyone knows the tune: sales at bookstores have fallen because buyers are ordering books online or downloading them to e-readers. Bookstores may be great places to browse and linger, but online is where the deals are. In the latest chapter in the Borders saga, the bookstore chain has agreed to sell its assets for $215m to Direct Brands, a media-distribution company owned by Najafi, a private-equity firm, which would also assume an additional $220m in liabilities. This will serve as the opening bid for the company’s bankruptcy-court auction, scheduled for July 19th.

Every time gas prices go up, local food gets another shot to make its breakthrough to the mainstream. At $4 a gallon, when food in a supermarket travels an average 1,500 miles to get to the store, local food becomes more economically competitive. Still, no matter how high gas prices go, local food is still marginal in terms of market share (though we don’t know yet what the results of Wal-Mart’s local food initiative will be).