Power to the people! That must be our mindset when it comes to being advocates for our Earth. Sustainable businesses have a critical role to play in advocating for greener practices, but so do we as consumers and citizens!
Consumers wield tremendous power over businesses. Businesses cannot survive without the support and confidence of their customers. When we demand higher standards for energy consumption, water conservation, reduced use of harmful chemicals, and other regulations, businesses have to change their practices. Feel free to tell companies what you do and don’t like about their sustainability policies. Let them know why you will or won’t shop with them. Remember when tuna fish cans weren’t marked for dolphin safety? By simply refusing to purchase cans that didn’t carry the dolphin-safe seal, consumers shut down the tuna fisheries’ accidental trapping and killing of dolphins. Money talks -- what you do and don’t do with your wallet speaks volumes!
As citizens, we have the opportunity to align ourselves with organizations who are committed to lobbying in Washington D.C. on behalf of our Earth. Looking for ways to get started as an advocate for sustainability? The American Sustainable Business Council is an excellent place to begin. With the goal in mind of making the economy productive, resilient, competitive, and equitable for businesses and their communities, the ASBC works to explain the need for sustainability and pursue new policy alternatives. You can check out their membership and partnership opportunities here.
Being an advocate is more than just following sustainable practices yourself; it’s about sharing the need for sustainability with others. Get out in your community and help paint a picture of what true sustainability can look like. You can encourage your friends to buy reusable grocery bags. You can call on your legislators to support the Green Infrastructure Bill -- using a real life example from your community. For instance, “I live on the coast and I see the water levels rising. We need to build resilience. We need to strengthen our seawalls.” You have a part to play in sustainability!
Use what you’re passionate about and what you see around you. Maybe you notice a need for a litter pick up day on your local highway, or the local middle school could benefit from a recycling program. Whatever it is, be bold enough to say something. If more people speak up, we will reduce our carbon emissions and create a healthier Earth!
The Sustainable Furnishings Council promotes healthy environments inside and out. We provide comprehensive information on environmental, safety, and health issues in the home furnishings industry. We champion initiatives that improve products and processes. The SFC and its members work to address sustainability and social issues, and offer clear information to consumers, the media, and other partners. Find us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.