Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Go green

As a passionate fan of the New York Giants it pains me to write a post in praise of the Philadelphia Eagles. But I recently heard of the environmental program the Eagles' organization implemented several years ago and was impressed that a football team would have the courage to lead on a critical social issue on which most publicly traded businesses remain silent.

Go Green was put in place by Christina and Jeff Lurie, the Eagles' owners. The organization has tested carbon-neutral games (using offsets), installed photovoltaic solar panels at several of its facilities, supports re-forestation programs and recycles much of the trash fans leave behind after a game. They've been able to document the positive impact the program has had on shrinking the carbon footprint of the organization and its fans.

This is a good example of how easy it can be to do good if you have the will to do so. Most companies don't do this because the "business case" can't justify the expense. The Luries are doing it simply because it's the right thing to do.

Speaking of photovoltaic solar (how many times in life do you get to say?!), this renewable energy source may finally be poised to deliver on its long held promise. Major hitters are putting their money into the sun. Google recently announced its intention to invest hundreds of millions to help develop new renewable energy sources, particularly solar. And Applied Materials, a client of BD'M, is bringing to bear on solar the same nanomanufacturing technology it used to drive down the cost of semiconductors. If they can be successful in driving down cost, which has been the key barrier for solar, it may make it easy for all of us, consumers and businesses alike, to significantly reduce our collective footprint.

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