I am an unabashed Public Radio junkie. All of my Sony Ericsson Walkman phones back to 2006, have not only had integrated flashlights but also functioned as transistor radios, allowing me to be permanently hooked up to CBC Radio 1, or to BBC and NPR Podcasts.
This week’s award-winning Age of Persuasion Episode is titled “It’s Not Easy Being Green: Green Marketing” and is one of my three essential Podcast episodes of 2011*.
Terry begins with Rachel Carson (that’s her bridge in Pittsburgh) and then traces the history of environmentally conscious consumerism, linking it to how marketers and advertisers have shaped their campaigns for sustainable, green goods. In 2007, 300,000 green trademarks were registered with patent offices, which is more than the number of trademarks and patents sought at the height of the dot.com boom.
The three main take-home messages are:
1. “Beginning with the publication of Silent Spring in 1962… various environmental crises(…)
My latest set of blogs are a bit delayed, because following on from teaching BIOLOGY 2010, York’s Plant Biology course, and the arrival of a very early spring, I am writing a lot about food – security and sustainability. These blogs take a lot of fact-checking and research and are time-consuming to write.
So, here’s a quick shout out to the LCBO – the Liquor Control Board of Ontario – who this past weekend, likely did more to promote cycling as a form of sustainable transportation among non-enthusiasts, than all of the cyclists, cycle clubs and cycling advocates that I know, put together, including the City of Toronto cycling office!
They put a very handsome young man, dressed in an impeccably tailored suit on a bike, and made it the cover of last weekend’s flyer promoting French wine. This arrived as an insert in our Saturday paper.
Marketing-wise, we’d normally expect to see(…)
Last Friday, I was one of the volunteer parent drivers for an excited group of school children that included my daughter. We went to the opening day of the “Harry Potter” Exhibition at the Ontario Science Centre. Like all trendy exhibitions, the cost of entry was pretty steep, and naturally, since this is a commercial enterprise which is all about making money, the exit of the exhibition led directly into the gift shop. All kinds of pricey Potter paraphernalia was on sale: a Wizard Chess set for over $400 and a replica of the marauder’s map for $45 (prompting me to keep asking myself, “Do J K Rowling and Warner Bros REALLY need another few million?”). Luckily, my daughter kept her selection on the less expensive side and settled on a $20 Parchment Paper Writing Set. “Heck, I thought” as I handed over the plastic, “I could put the kit(…)
The personal debt of North Americans – both in Canada and the US is staggering. Oprah’s “O” magazine’s long-time financial advisor, Suze Orman, has published a great book on Women & Money that tells the reader how to track their personal spending. Apparently many North Americans can’t do this. Suze makes the link between the lack of basic awareness of where the money’s going and personal debt. The Certified General Accountants of Canada 2009 report, “Where has the money gone: The state of Canadian household debt in a stumbling economy“ makes this link eminently clear. At the same time, there are tons of tv shows and books on how to declutter your life. They draw a clear connection between personal stress and the accumulation of stuff – as in buying it from the mall. A search of chapters.indigo.ca available book titles with the keyword “Feng Shui” – which, in North(…)
This past Christmas, I was delighted to find a great range of cards from Pistachio (the latest project of Heather Reisman of Chapters-Indigo). They were “Walking in a Winter Wonderland” cards, which thereby extended the Christmas card-sending season to March. Plus, they were FSC-branded, 100% post-consumer waste fibre, Soya Ink, powered by Green Energy – Mohawk, Made in Canada. Yeh!! Every kind of serious sustainability logo, right there. My decade-long lack of enthusiasm for cards has largely been driven by concerns about ecological footprints, as well as time crunches associated with grading 100s of final exams and essays at Christmas and attending untold numbers of “festivals of lights” school celebrations. But, I acknowledge that cards are an important means of staying connected and serve an important social purpose. These Pistachio cards allowed me to do that, and simultaneously underscore my sustainability message to friends and relatives.
Pistachio was back in my(…)