Thursday, March 22, 2012

Ray Anderson on the Hour with George Stroumboulopolous

This is a YouTube interview of Ray Anderson on the CBC show The Hour with George Stroumboulopolous. Ray Anderson has some great ideas on how to make reduce his ecological footprint. He mentions how being sustainable has affected his business and how we should start focusing on green technology. He says even using this green technology his reduced his costs, improved the quality of his products they due to the fact that sustainable design has opened up innovation and has helped the goodwill of the marketplace. He keeps mentions the top of the mountain of sustainability and how it represents zero ecological footprint. They are currently over halfway up the mountain and climbing. Anderson also built a consulting firm that helps other companies deal with sustainability.

What I was surprised to hear was that Wal-Mart is one of the bigger companies to have made gains in the world. Even though they have been known to destroy communities, they are still making a stride to do business greener. They have over 60,000 suppliers which account for 92% of their total ecological footprint. When they proposed the idea to climb mount sustainability it was a shock amongst all CEO’s.

George asked the question if companies who commit crimes against the environment should be prosecuted for a white-collar crime. The crime that Anderson used was theft because we are stealing the lives of our grandchildren. He jokes at the end saying that the corporate laws need to be rewritten but it won’t happen very soon because congress is run by CEO’s. I think that there should be severe penalties for harming the environment. Companies are generating tons of revenue which could be spent on green technology. If they harm the environment, the fines would go towards cleanup and conservation.

I really applaud Ray Anderson for educating people on sustainability. A lot of people just see it as being an extra cost but as Anderson has proven, it can also result in a profit. More people are switching their business to environmentally friendly companies so it would be a good suggestion that businesses do the same. Wal-Mart is making a huge movement encouraging their 60,000 suppliers to climb the sustainability mountain. Ray Anderson truly was an inspiration and he will continue to encourage companies to go green.

-Daniel Parsons

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