Why Environmentalists Are More Committed to Business Than Most Businessmen

Jason McHuff/CC BY-SA 2.0

If only more people in power would listen to Kumi Naidoo, head of Greenpeace International, the world would be a far, far better place. I have no doubt about that.

In a new interview with The Guardian, Naidoo nails the root cause of most of the environmental problems were facing and many of the social problems as well.

We need to redefine the entire notion of economic growth. We need to recognize that there are ecological limits to growth which we are rapidly reaching, if that growth means perpetually increasing resource consumption—which by all accounts it now does, and the language of the Rio+20 draft text does little to assure me that real action will be taken to change that.

Here's Naidoo:

Big business is starting to understand that they have as much to lose if the whole planet goes to pot, but have have to ensure business leaders are not strangulated by the tyranny of quarterly reporting cycles, which is what the situation is right now.

I met with the senior management team at Macro, which is the third largest retailer in the US, and I said Greenpeace is more committed to its business in the long term than they are.

They were shocked and asked what I meant. I told them that fish forms part of their product line and if they continue sourcing fish from unsustainable sources then the end result will be to kill their product line. We are not against palm oil or fishing, but against what is unsustainable.

Read more: Greenpeace declares war on the finance sector

Tags: Activism | Economics | Greenpeace | Rio+20

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