Monday, November 19, 2007

Wal Mart = green ?

most people know that Wal-Mart equals green when it comes to money. as the largest single retailer in the world, they've redefined what retail looks like, from pricing to distribution. but they've long been derided for their lack of social conscience. these accusations cover a number of fronts, from care for workers to environmental friendliness to the promotion of materialism to the use of poor working facilities abroad.

in October 2005, Wal-Mart's CEO, Lee Scott, set three gigantic goals in the way of addressing environmental friendliness concerns, and just last week released their first report documenting their progress in this area. CNN has full article here.

though i have been (and will continue to be) a staunch advocate against Wal-Mart, i have to admit that i find the goals set in '05 admirable and the honesty of the report refreshing. they didn't try to say they've solved all the problems.

that being said, i find this quote near the end of the article compelling:

"Our overall argument is that even if Wal-Mart achieved all of its stated goals, the company's business model is inherently unsustainable," said Sarah Anderson from the Institute for Policy Studies.

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oh...and 11 days until World AIDS Day. more on that later...

4 comments:

Matthias said...

They sell cheap shit - that's my main objection. When are we going to return to quality?

gavin richardson said...

reading this reminded me of this talk on greentech at ted conference. i actually noticed one day when the lights came on during the day at our new "greener" wal-mart in our town. found that interesting.

you might be interested in many of the other ted talks.

joeldaniel said...

Gavin...
Thanks for the resource. I'm traveling home from a conference at the moment, but hopefully I'll get to take a look in the next couple days.

jdh

Timothy Moore said...

Joel, here is a recent article that I read about how Wal-mart got involved in becoming green. They hired the Sierra Club's golden child Adam Wehrbach (he was the youngest president in the company's history). It's a good article, you might be interested in it.
Have a great day!
-Tim

http://www.fastcompany.com/magazine/118/working-with-the-enemy.html