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Title:Which activities or practices are disputable?
Date of publishing:September 20, 2011
Category:Other content
Also available in the following languages:Dutch, French

Which activities or practices are disputable?

For all disputable activities the degree of involvement of a company is investigated. For each disputable activity, Forum ETHIBEL applies different thresholds to measure these levels of involvement. The definitions and thresholds that apply can be consulted in the following documents:

  1. Guideline for hazardous chemicals
  2. Guideline for the sex industry
  3. Guideline for GMO's in food
  4. Guideline for alcohol
  5. Guideline for animal maltreatment

Apart from the above mentioned criteria, disputable practics such as land grabbing, the exploitation of shale gas and tar sands and coal-fired power generation are equally taken into account in practice and may lead to possible exclusion. Guidlines defining the tresholds for these criteria are to be developped soon.

If any involvement is detected, it will be thoroughly investigated. Contrary to the negative criteria, a company can - in certain cases - still qualify to be included in the Investment Register.

Of course, Forum ETHIBEL considers this involvement as non-desirable, but we think it is important to look at each activity in a wider context and consider the exact impact.The investigation could reveal, for instance, that the impact of the involvement is so minor that exclusion would not be appropriate.

This list of topics and disputable items is continuously evaluated and adjusted and is prepared by means of intense contacts with several NGOs and movements with relevant expertise (trade unions, environmental organisations, peace movements, North-South organisations, consumer associations, ...).We also open a dialogue with business life and lobby groups to get an overall idea about the impact of certain activities.Forum ETHIBEL does not take a principal stand in this matter, but finds that some products and services do not belong in a sustainable social model or that some practices are not widely accepted in society. Recent examples of such practices include the issues surrounding land grabbing and the exploitation of shale gas and tar sands.

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