Forget the carbon tax – reward the top polluters the Carrotmob way

It’s been hard to avoid the carbon tax over the past week. I’ve talked to people who support it and people who don’t. But I haven’t talked to anyone yet who thinks we should be doing nothing.

The big argument seems to be people still aren’t sure if what is being done is going to help. Clearly there are still people out there who don’t believe in climate change or sustainable living. But if you’re interested in Carrotmob I’m going to assume you’re not a sceptic.

In the whole climate change debate you do often hear the argument households switching off a light doesn’t make much difference. So by the same token it follows that big business can mean big change. The top 500 polluters the carbon tax is targeting haven’t been officially announced. But as Annabel Crabb pointed out on The Drum it’s pretty easy to figure out who’s likely to be included by looking at the latest emissions report.

The obvious top polluters are power generators. But there are also plenty of businesses you would buy from or do business with that made it onto the list for having 87.5  kilotonnes or more of greenhouse gas emissions—:

  • ALDI
  • Bega Cheese
  • Cadbury
  • Coca-Cola
  • David Jones
  • Harvey Norman
  • Heinz
  • IBM
  • Fairfax (The Age)
  • Fosters
  • Lion Nathan Foods (Berri, Dairy Farmers, COON, PURA, Tooheys, James Boag)
  • Mars
  • McDonalds
  • McCains
  • Murray-Goulburn
  • Myers
  • National Australia Bank
  • Nestle
  • News Australia Holdings (The Herald-Sun, MX, The Australian)
  • Woolworths (Safeway)
  • Wesfarmers (Bunnings)
  • Westpac

As consumers we need to keep asking, what are you going to do about it? How are you diminishing your impact on the environment?

Carrotmob tends to focus on helping small businesses. It aims to show business and government that people will choose to spend their dollars on sustainable business rather than just the cheapest product. But it doesn’t hurt to use the same principles for the high polluters too. Reward the ones like Linfox who have supported finding ways to move to a cleaner future and have already cut their carbon emissions by 28%. And be wary of the ones who spend their dollars on slick advertising campaigns to convince us they’re sustainable when they could be spending it on research. It shows we do want a sustainable future and we’re willing to pay for it.

Of course Linfox is a supply chain solutions group for business so it’s kind of hard to support them as a consumer. So Carrotmob is throwing the challenge out – any corporations on the list above want to pledge some environmental improvements in return for some consumer love?

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One response to “Forget the carbon tax – reward the top polluters the Carrotmob way

  1. Love it! I gave this idea the max number of possible votes on GetUp (i.e. 3). With a combination of our own daily attempts to limit our carbon footprint, plus the carbon tax, as well as top polluters agreeing to carrot mobs (and then us taking part in them) we could all rest assured we have covered our bases in attempting to halt climate change! Great idea guys!!!

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