green companies

This post provides a list of links to green-business-related organizations, associations, websites, books, and other resources, which are useful not only to people who own, manage, or work for companies, but to all of us—as consumers and citizens who are affected by business decisions and corporate practices every day. The resources are organized into the following categories:

  • Green Business (general)
  • Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Environmental & Social Entrepreneurship, Innovation, Financing, and Investing
  • Clean, Green Jobs
  • Local Economies / Community Investment and Resilience
  • Confronting the Corporate Corruption of Government
  • Ecological Economics
  • Online Media
  • Books

[Note: New links were added to this post in April 2012.]

Green Business (general)

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February 20, 2012
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About a year ago, I posted a piece with tips, ideas, and considerations for selecting green gifts. Here’s a summary recap of the 7 types of gifts I suggested in that post:

  1. Non-“stuff”  (e.g., activities, services, or donations, rather than products)
  2. Homemade, handmade, or homegrown stuff
  3. Locally made or Fair Trade goods
  4. Products with green attributes or purposes
  5. Re-gifted items or lightly used finds
  6. Eminently useful things
  7. Small stuff

Take a look at last year’s post to see the specific ideas that I suggested within each of those categories. This year, I’d like to supplement those suggestions with a few more. In addition to the criteria listed above, you also might want to consider choosing the following types of gifts:

  • Products (or services) made and sold by small, independent (and ideally local) businesses, rather than national chains or multi-national corporations. Or at least try to buy things that were Made in the USA (or whichever country you live in) to help boost the domestic economy.
  • Goods made or sold by companies that are members of the 1% for the Planet campaign: “a growing global movement of 1,395 companies [as of Nov. 2011] that donate 1% of their sales to a network of 2,691 environmental organizations worldwide.”
  • Goods made or sold by Certified B Corporations (or Benefit Corporations), which “are a new type of corporation which uses the power of business to solve social and environmental problems.” As of Nov. 7, 2011, there are 451 Certified B Corporations. That number will be growing, as more companies achieve this certification and as more states pass laws establishing the legitimacy of Benefit Corporations. One of the Founding B Corporations is BetterWorldBooks.

Speaking of books, here are a few green-themed books that might interest some of the people on your gift list:

Also, I might as well mention a few green product brands that are personal favorites of mine: Newman’s Own Organics; Seeds of Change; Sustainable Seed Co.; Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds; and Patagonia. I am not getting paid to recommend any of these companies.

Lastly, here are some online resources for additional information on green products and reducing wasteful consumption:

Related posts:

Greener, More Gratifying Gifts (added November 2015)

Green Goods: Beneficial Products and Gifts (added November 2012)

Good Duds: Sustainable and Responsible Clothing (added October 2013)

Benefit Corporations and B Corps: Businesses for the Common Good (added July 2013)

Lesser-Known Organizations that are Worthy of Support (added December 2012)

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November 8, 2011
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SEE NEWER POST (added February 2012): Sustainable Business, Corporate Social Responsibility, Ethical Finance, and Sustainable Economies

 

While the majority of businesses still have a long way to go to be environmentally sustainable, it’s clear that interest in greening the business world is on the rise. One of the many signs of this is the growing number of Sustainable MBA programs cropping up around the country (e.g., the Presidio Graduate School’s MBA in Sustainable Management, Dominican University’s Green MBA, and at least 20 others). Another indicator is the gradual greening of massive companies like Walmart, which recently developed a Sustainability Index to assess the sustainability of its supplier companies. We’re also seeing the emergence of “green” banks, such as New Resource Bank. And some cities and counties have established Green Business certification programs for local businesses.

Given the significant environmental, social, economic, and health impacts (as well as the political influence) that many companies have, it’s critically important that we support and create businesses that implement responsible and sustainable policies and practices—businesses that reflect our values and whose practices and products aren’t compromising the length or quality our lives.

Among U.S. companies, a few that have shown early and exceptional leadership in sustainability are: Patagonia (the recreation/outdoors outfitter), Interface (the commercial carpet company), Seventh Generation (household products), and Straus Family Creamery (organic dairy).

Two of the many recent books on green business are:

And a seminal book on green business is:

These are some of the major online hubs for news and information on green business:

Also, author and consultant Andrew Winston has a good green business blog.

And last but not least, the following are some of the most prominent groups and networks that help companies improve their corporate social responsibility (CSR) efforts and their environmental performance:

 

SEE NEWER POST (added February 2012): Sustainable Business, Corporate Social Responsibility, Ethical Finance, and Sustainable Economies

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January 29, 2010
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