Major home goods retailers and big office buyers alike are stepping up to further scrutinize toxic flame retardants used in furniture.

A groundswell of product repair efforts — including Patagonia's new "Worn Wear" tour — are banking on macro-trends such as the maker movement to help sell the value of extended product lifespans.

Eco-efficiency is table stakes. What separates the leaders from the laggards is a core set of values.

Companies like TE Connectivity and Creation Technologies ask staff from product design and supply chain management to collaborate early in a new product's design cycle to avoid ecological problems.

Harnessing nature to improve buildings can have benefits on multiple levels, as companies such as EDS and Hewlett-Packard have learned.

Research asked representatives from business, government, NGOs and academia to identify the barriers, drivers and needs to advance the agenda.

Insiders agree that algae-based foods, fuels and other products will be price-competitive with their traditional counterparts by 2020.