Eco-lobby group Climate Counts has issued a green rating scorecard that lauds Canon and IBM as veritable Planeteers, but dumps on eBay, Amazon and Apple as planet-hating muckity-mucks. The group scored 56 well-known companies on 22 criteria based on their self-reported actions. Points were awarded or deducted for corporate …
What A Useless Organization
How ridiculous. Ebay is a building full of web servers somewhere, how can they be impacting the environment worse than a company that manufactures integrated circuits (e.g., IBM)? Why focus on the computer industry of all things?
Climate Counts sounds like they are just cashing in on the lastest public hysteria. What's their business model? Donate money or we list you as bad for the environment?
I think Greenpeace's list is more rational. How can Apple really get 2 - sure they aren't saints, but they do quite a lot. Equally, Google just built the largest corporate solar panel system in the US...
Sure this in anecdotal, but this list seems completely random...
eBay vs American Phosgene Company
So this is basically rating companies by the amount of marketing bollox the produce - I think it might be an inverted index.
If the American Phosgene Company puts out big glossy brochures on recycled paper about how all their poison gas is being shipped in biodegradable containers, etc, then they get loads of points.
I'd suggest that eBay intrinsically helps the environment by enabling stuff to be traded rather than dumped when the original user is done with it. Likewise Amazon allows many shopping trips to be delivered in a single postperson's round, rather than invoving each buyer in a car journey to buy a book.
I reckon their index is probably inversely true.
I was all ready to invest in the American Phosgene Company, but was disappointed to find that the most relevant Google hits (sorry, am I not supposed to admit to using Google here?) were linking straight to Rich's comment. Shame; they sounded like a good sort of outfit.
Surely by flogging your stuff on eBay rather than chucking it, you help the environment? And they don't themselves produce any packaging waste, etc, etc. It's just one big website! Sounds like a bloody useless survey to me, but then that's nothing new.
segmentated but good
I think we absolute need a means by which corporations/organisations/etc can certify themselves on their environmental responsibility - IT is as good a starting point as any (after all our industry does represent a much more significant environmental footprint than most people imagine, and more importantly hold a high potential to help address the issues).
However, I think multiple uncoordinated scoring systems (e.g. one for CO2-equivalent footprint, and another for corporate policy) will confuse the issue. Why not employ a cross-linked ranking ro ensure we know what actions represent significant change and which are more greenwash.
Why Ebay is destroying the planet (maybe)
The reason Ebay recieved such a low score from these guys maybe down to its carbon footprint.
Whilst billions of people buying second hand toasters and fake handbags probably wont be destroying millions of square feet of rainforest a second, the machines that run the Ebay central brain will probably be consuming a fair amount of power. Coupled with the 200 million people using Skype and the millions of people paying for porn over PayPal, they maybe putting lots of pennies in the meter.
I think the thing here could be down to them displacing more carbon, if they planted a rainforest or something that could help raise the score for them.
But as there is tonnes of rainforest anyway, whats the point eh?
I think we need to applaud Ebay for not clubbing a baby seal to death each time someone buys a Lord of the Rings box set, freshly knicked from HMV.
84.9% of surveys are pointless, just as 97.6% of statistics are made-up.
A PR exercise?
Given that Climate Counts launched last month, what would be a better way to garner a bit of much-needed publicity than putting the boot into a few corporations?
Maybe Climate Counts has got it right, but I did think it interesting that the reporting of this article only saw fit to mention that this system used by the organisation may have "extremely limited validity".
It's a shame that the reporter didn't feel qualified to give an opinion on whether Climate Counts had got it right - but hey, that might have got in the way of an eye-catching headline.
Definately a PR job
Thi is rich coming from a organisation started in a country which essentially pulled out of the Kyoto Conference accord. Perhaps they should concentrate on U.S. companies first with a comparison with the resto of the world.
IMHO, the 'O' in their company name is absolutely redundant.
Looking at their score-card, actually achieving anything is only worth 27 points out of 100.
You could get 27 points from "support public policy", get "top-level support" and "have a management plan and organization structure for climate change".
Planning is to be rewarded, but this system looks ripe for beaurocracy and BS over real action.
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