Friday, June 15, 2007

It's Easy Being Green

Though a famous puppet frog laments in a tune that "It's Not Easy Being Green," many companies are now finding that to be no longer the case. Commercials and testimonials abound about how environmentally friendly (aka "green") they have become. Green is the new black, as fashionistas might say.

For example, a recent commentary in a New Jersey business magazine called COMMERCE (their caps lock must have been stuck) featured an article by Silverjet CEO Lawrence Hunt discussing the incredible amount of carbon his company's jets pump into the atmosphere every year, and how he's trying to do something about it rather than putting his company's proverbial head in the sand. For each plane ticket sold, according to the article, Silverjet includes a "mandatory, nominal offset fee" which is then directed to "The CarbonNeutral Company, an independent eco-portfolio company, who applies the money to various green projects across the world to accurately offset the total travel emissions." Interesting concept.

While Silverjet is not the only company doing something like this, they certainly are on the forefront of environmentally-mindful initiatives in the airline industry. Meanwhile other companies in other industries are trying to stake their claims as environmental leaders. See: Toyota, BP, Whole Foods, et al. Commercials about going green abound.

So what should we make of this new marketing trend of "going green"? Is this a result of companies waking up and wanting to change the world? Or is it just a "feel-good" ploy that companies use to try and attract new customers? And lastly, has it become "too easy" to be green?

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