Every small business, every primary school, big bank, car company, media conglomerate, clothing manufacturer, you name it, has gone 'green' lately. Or, at least, would like to have you believe that. In this era of eco-adulation, however, how can consumers distinguish between what's marketing-driven greenwashing, and what's a legitimate effort to care for the environment? Equally vexing, how can businesses which sincerely want to do the right thing be seen (and appreciated) above the fray?
Few know more about this subject than Peter Robinson, CEO of the Vancouver-based David Suzuki Foundation, one of the most respected organizations in Canada on the issues of science and the environment. Before joining DSF in January 2008, Mr. Robinson spent seven years as CEO of Mountain Equipment Co-op, the country's largest outdoor equipment retailer. He began his career as a park ranger in B.C., where he was twice decorated for bravery by the Governor General of Canada.