Is Your Business Green? World Wildlife Fund Needs to Hear From You!

Collaborative action and communication are necessary to reverse the environmental crisis we are facing. To ensure an ecologically and economically balanced future we must work together and communicate best practices. With its Green Game-Changers initiative, the World Wildlife Fund-UK is leading efforts in knowledge sharing.

If your organization has an innovative product, service or market approach that serves the best interests of people and planet, then you can share it here. If your submission meets the green criteria established by WWF, then it will be featured on the NGO’s website and online networks. You can also join the community via LinkedIn and all corporations, no matter their location, are encouraged to submit. The site has a good start on its bank of game-changers, but more case studies are needed. Examples of companies already involved include HP, Cisco and Xeros, a UK company with a washing machine that uses 90% less water than traditional models.

While the Game-Changers program is largely an effort of the WWF-UK, the larger international group, with over 5 million members globally, works in over 100 countries. For the past 45 years the organization has been in the business of protecting nature and has set an ambitious goal: to conserve 19 of the world’s most natural places and change global markets to affect the future of nature, all by 2020.

The World Wildlife Fund has always been a leader in cooperative partnerships. In 1993 the group was instrumental in the development of the Forest Stewardship Council and co-founded the Marine Stewardship Council in 1996. But, with the environmental crisis worsening and the above goals in mind, the group has expanded its partnership efforts. Through its Corporate Partnerships division, WWF works with private business on multiple levels.

Leveraging the expertise of the WWF team, the organization has sector and industry specific programs that can help companies implement more sustainable practices. For instance, in North America, WWF has partnered with companies such as Wal-Mart and Williams-Sonoma on responsible sourcing of wood and paper products-all a part of its Global Forest and Trade Network.

Further, through its transformational partnerships, WWF works with companies to transform business practices to reduce overall environmental impact and bring about lasting environmental changes. The best example of this collaborative effort is the connection with Coca-Cola. Since 2007, WWF and Coke have focused on freshwater conservation, Coke manufacturing and the manufacturer’s agricultural supply chain.  The two continue to work together on action plans aimed at mitigating risks to some of the world’s most important freshwater basins, watersheds that are threatened by dams, pollution and damaged habitat.

Some companies choose to partner with WWF through philanthropic efforts while others become partners in marketing, leveraging the famous Panda logo to stimulate conservation efforts. No matter the scale or depth of collaboration, WWF keeps its doors open to all that are willing to contribute to the ambitious goals the organization has set for itself, and for the planet.

Earlier this year, TriplePundit talked about the importance of private and public partnerships in sustainability. WWF, and others like them, recognize the real truth that coordinated effort is needed to stem the tide of planetary degradation. It is that serious and it is that important. Happily, WWF and its partners are doing their part to move us in a more positive direction.

Leslie is a Sustainable MBA student at Green Mountain College. Study interests include sustainability, social responsibility and the power of corporate and non-profit partnerships to bring about positive change. Other areas of interest include social media, fundraising and public policy. She holds a Certificate in Nonprofit Management and is certified in the Global Reporting initiative for Sustainability Reporting. Additionally, she holds an MA in Organizational Management and a BS in Leisure Management. On the rare occasions when she is not studying, she enjoys writing, reading, running, nature walks and yoga. She hopes to use her skills, talents and education to make a positive impact with an environmentally and socially conscious organization. Feel free to connect with her on LinkedIn.

3 responses

  1. Public-private partnerships like this are vitally important to promote the spread of sustainability, particularly among small businesses, so I applaud WWF for this program. Whereas larger entities have the resources and wherewithal to devote a person or even an entire department to sustainability, smaller enterprises simply cannot do so. They need resources, guidance, and assistance on sustainability if we want to bring the tipping point of SME sustainability closer to reality. Public and non-profit organizations like WWF can play an important role in this effort.

    At COSE, we have partnered with the Institute of Sustainable Development’s Green Plus program to help our small business members learn about sustainability and earn a certification for becoming more sustainable. The type of one-on-one and peer-to-peer guidance businesses receive in Green Plus is a key component for helping SMEs understand what sustainability means to them and how they can put it into practice on a daily basis.

    – Tim Kovach,
    Product Coordinator for Energy at COSE

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