98 percent of climate scientists believe man made climate change is real. The effects of climate change are felt more on the poor and disenfranchised than on any other group. It takes longer for these groups to recover from storms and natural disasters. It takes even longer when these disasters are man-made (Flint MI water crises). Should we expect things

MS Sustainability by Thomas Sheffield, MBA
MS Sustainability
by Thomas Sheffield, MBA

to get better with a new President? Donald Trump called climate change a hoax during the presidential campaign. He also committed to easing restrictions on getting energy from hell (coal, oil, natural gas) on federal lands and dismantling the very agency which protects us, the EPA. Trump also vowed to abolish President Obama’s executive orders on climate change and withdraw from the Paris Climate agreement.

Since we can expect little support from the White House, we must put more pressure on the business community. We must not count on the government to lead the fight against climate change. However, one of the biggest advocates of sustainable practices is the business community. Companies have a responsibility to its stakeholders to maximize profits and they realize going green will create opportunities to create green (money) which will lead to more jobs.

Not only does the business community see the need for sustainable practices, consumers want and expect it. Customers in new and existing markets expect businesses to produce products in a manner that will not harm them or the planet. Customers are concerned about the ethical production, protection of natural resources, social fairness and inclusion. Cost is not necessarily relevant in this issue. A survey revealed about 66 percent of global consumers report they are willing to pay more for sustainable goods. This is a 16 percent increase from just 3 years ago.

If the business community is aware of how going green makes sense, then we should put even more pressure on them in order to push a green agenda. Our voices are heard through the purchases we make. Some politicians take our vote for granted. We should not allow them or businesses to take our support for granted. The dollar is a very powerful tool in which we should be willing to use. This concept is not new. The business community was ground zero for the civil rights movement. Integration was forced because of the Montgomery bus boycott and lunch counter sit-ins.

There is a great opportunity to bring change that protects our communities and the environment. People are constantly throwing out the word revolution when it comes to government. Since we cannot count on our government to lead the fight against climate change, we will need to put more pressure on the business community to do so. This will allow us to make progress for our communities in spite of who leads this nation.

I really want to hear from you. Please feel free to contact me thomsustainableconsulting@gmail.com. Or you can follow me on Twitter @tcsheff. I have also created a new face book page WordsactionChange Initiative. Please share and follow.