Monday, April 24, 2006

Every big bit helps

I don't know if it says anything that I still can't recall if this actually Tesco's strapline.

Anyway, just saw a little snippet in the Sunday papers (in this case, The Express) that Tesco is going to invest £100 million in sustainable technologies.
The size and tone of the piece seems to suggest a slight eyebrow-twitch of their own, but to me it's a £100 million BTN (better than nothing) until proven otherwise.

Now, I wonder if they will still be getting public funds via WRAP, or might this generous organisation be persuaded to support efforts being conducted by those who don't already make billions in profit?

Because I have just read it a few days later and it would slot in a treat here, let me add this not disimilar set of thoughts on the matter from FOE.

And with another day, another viewpoint, this time from the business section of The Independent (answering my first question, and adding weight to my subsequent musings)...

"To counter the negative publicity being drummed up by lobby groups, there is to be £100m for environmental initiatives - everyone is clambering aboard this bandwagon, it seems - and some sort of "multi-pronged" community plan is about to be hatched in an attempt to make Tesco seem even more warm and cuddly than it already likes to think it is. In so doing the company plans to go beyond the rampant consumerism of its message to date of "every little helps"."

...and The Telegraph:

"With yesterday's annual result came details of a £100m investment in wind turbines, solar energy and geothermal power for its new stores. If this were a vacuous political statement to buy off the "green lobby" it would be a very expensive mistake. In fact it is simply the latest investment, and there will be more to come, in what in Terry Tesco's judgment will be the next big thing for supermarkets."

I'm kinda hoping they are on the money, as this means that at last business may be seeing doing the right green thing to be an opportunity. Breath is being held as we speak.

Cutting emissions

Just back from a long weekend break with the family visiting friends and relatives in bonny Scotland.
As it has a 2L engine, alarm, electric gizmos and lots safety features the Golf doesn't, we opted for the Volvo. And a very good job it did, too. Trouble was, ignoring wear and tear, etc, in fuel alone it cost us over £100. Because, ignoring the trip computer (which claims a potential 450 miles range at every fill-up, when I'm lucky to score 300), I just found it's doing 30mpg. And that's pants.
Trouble is, I think we're stuck with it. The small matter of the purchase price of a new one cuts out that option, and the trade-in for a more economical model puts us in very dodgy territory. At least we know what we have lavished on it in terms of servicing, etc. Which puts us between a rock and a hard place.
The nation's pols, however, do not have to trouble themselves with such concerns. But this of course does not render them immune from some dilemmas: Cameron pledges to cut car emissions
Just back from, one presumes, flying scag-loads of minions and journos for a photo-op in the snowy north of somewhere, the Tory leader 'will unveil ambitious plans today for a range of incentives to make hybrid or "dual-fuel" vehicles the norm on Britain's roads'. Great, unless of course you are popping up and down to Scotland, when they confer no value to man, bank balance or Mother Nature.
Trouble is, he has turned down the Government's offer of a petrol-electric Toyota Prius, which has of course got us into a flurry of ridiculous finger-pointing which gets us nowhere. Daft and divisive. And they wonder why we have given up voting.