Going Green Offers Competitive Advantage
With the worldwide green-business market worth more than $600 billion, the environment has become a strategic issue that can be used to “crush the competition,” Time reports. Businesses have turned green primarily for the potential profits – GE, which¬†has committed to spending $1.5 billion a year on renewable energy and other green research by 2010, has reported revenues of $10.1 billion from environmental products in 2005, up from $6.2 billion in 2004.
With¬†its Prius, Toyota is poised to become the world’s leading automobile manufacturer. It’s taken the idea of conservation into its factories too. Today, Toyota can use a single production line to make multiple vehicle types, which has helped it reduce energy use in manufacturing 30 percent¬†since 2000. CO2 emissions per car are down as well, and the company has set a goal of reducing emissions worldwide in 2010 by 20¬†percent from 2001 levels. Toyota’s advances have forced Ford and General Motors into a frenzied game of catch-up.
But there are some contradictions that raise cries of greenwashing. GE, for example,¬†sells wind turbines, but it probably sells even more jet engines.
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