Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Not all that evil

It's getting harder and harder to hate WalMart. At least as an environmentalist. They've jumped on the organic foods bandwagon and in doing so helped put organics on the map. They've made a commitment to greening their operations. Most recently, they've announced a program to illuminate the environmental impact of consumer electronics. This is really promising, and I hope that something similar becomes standard. It would be great to see the electronics industry start to go green.

There are still some good reasons to hate WalMart (working conditions, suburban sprawl, homogenization of culture, and so forth), but they have the power to effect real change. We should expect the same of all the other major corporations. Not just their competitors, but other corporations, particularly those whose brand is their most valuable asset. At the moment, it seems like pressuring corporations to change is likely to be as effective as writing a letter to your representatives. So do both.

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