Video Interview: Mike Wallace of GRI at the New Economics Institute Strategies for a New Economy Conference

Jun 26, 2012 5:00 PM ET
Multimedia with summary

Recorded live at the New Economics Institute Strategies for a New Economy Conference on June 9, 2012, Mike Wallace speaks about how his work as Director of Focal Point USA for the Global Reporting Initiative, which provides sustainability reporting standards and guidelines, advances the new economy movement. "Unless we have data that's comparable put out in a standardized form, we can't make any decisions or pass any judgments" about sustainability, says Wallace. He points out that stock exchanges around the globe are starting to require their listed companies to provide environmental, social, and governance (ESG) data using GRI reporting guidelines, and Bloomberg, the business and investment information company, now includes ESG data on 300,000+ terminals worldwide. Finally, the US government is taking important strides into sustainability reporting with an executive order "that basically says, if you are a federal agency or department, you need to produce a strategic sustainability performance plan -- that's fabulous!" says Wallace. "But if you look at the fine print, you'll see that their definition of sustainability is about energy, waste, and water. But sustainability is about much more than just energy, waste, and water." Wallace points out that currently between 12 and 18 federal agencies or departments produce sustainability reports of one form or another using GRI guidelines, but there's still a long way to go before the US governent reports on sustainability comprehensively in a standardized way.

About The New Economics Institute
The New Economics Institute is a US organization that combines vision, theory, action, and communication to effect a transition to a new economy -- an economy that gives priority to supporting human wellbeing and Earth’s natural systems. The organization is the successor organization to the 30-year old,well-respected E.F. Schumacher Institute. The Institute is headed by newly appointed President and CEO, Dr. Robert K. Massie and
currently has offices in New York City, NY, and Great Barrington, MA.
The New Economics Institute’s multidisciplinary approach employs research, applied theory, public campaigns, and educational events to describe an alternative socio-economic system that is capable of addressing the enormous challenges of our times. NEI current projects include the well-known BerkShares Local Currency Program, the Community Land Trust Program, and the Global Transition Map to a New Economy.
The New Economics Institute Board of Directors include Gar Alperovitz, Jessica Brackman, John Fullerton, Neva Goodwin, Hildegarde Hannum, Eric Harris-Braun, Dan Levinson, Bob Massie, Richard Norgaard, David Orr, Will Raap, Gus Speth, Peter Victor, Stewart Wallis, Timothy Wirth and Susan Witt.
About Mike Wallace

Mike Wallace is the Director of the Global Reporting Initiative's Focal Point USA. His primary task is the implementation of the Focal Point program in the United States and Canada. With almost 20-years of international experience in the sustainability field, he has lived and worked in Australia and Europe. Mike has worked with corporations, non-profits, and government agencies on the development, implementation, and integration of sustainability programs. A recognized expert in the field, he speaks and writes internationally on the subject of sustainability and reporting and has specific expertise in how the financial markets use sustainability information.


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Carina Millstone