Within the past 10 years, we have seen an obvious and dramatic trend reemerge from the 60s. Being environmentally responsible has become the cool thing to do and be seen doing. Instead of referring to people who care about the environment as “tree huggers” or “hippies,” many people are now looked down upon if they don’t take interest in helping Mother Nature. Our neighbors refusing to recycle is one thing, but what if a major company harms the environment and doesn’t take measures to fix or reverse the problem?
One of the main ways that companies in today’s society show the public that they are well-rounded and proactive is to be involved in bettering our environment. This is completely understandable considering that recent studies have shown that more than half of consumers are more likely to use products from organizations that support sustainability in some way. Even organizations and companies that are not directly affiliated with environmental awareness are still expected to participate in the green movement.
Many corporations participate in bettering our environment because of the legal and tax benefits. In fact, California recently passed a law stating that any company that yields carbon dioxide emissions greater than 25,000 metric tons will have to face penalties.
Although many laws and regulations have been placed on car manufacturers and fuel distributors, would you be more likely to buy gas from a company many have deemed environmentally irresponsible? Think about the Exxon spill of the late 80s and how long it took them to recover because they took little to no action to be transparent with their publics and do anything to prove that they wanted to be environmentally conscious. However, today we regularly see Exxon commercials about how clean their fuel is and their efforts to help the planet.
Companies may go green to get tax breaks and legal benefits, avoid breaking laws and to please shareholders. But in the long run, is it more than that? Is it corporate suicide to not take initiative to be environmentally responsible and show that to your target audience regularly? You be the judge.