MEC joins 1% For The Planet movement


"Business must be a force for change, if environmental challenges are to be overcome." (Peter Robinson - CEO, Mountain Equipment Co-op)

When I went to check out the 1% For The Planet alliance's website for the first time, a random quote generator on the site spit out that little gem from MEC's CEO. Absolutely perfect, considering MEC just announced they'll be giving 1% of sales to environmental groups, making them member #472.

So what exactly is One Percent For The Planet? Started in 2001, it's a global corporate movement (a refreshing phrase I don't find myself using often) of companies who are committing a 1% contribution of their sales towards environmental causes.

It's important to note that what's being talked about here isn't 1% of profits, but 1% of total revenues, ensuring that a meaningful portion is given and that the amount can't be as easily manipulated. In MEC's case, this will mean more than $2 million this year alone.

In addition, the 1% For The Planet Affiliate designation is intended to become a recognizable mark of sustainability and genuine environmental concern for businesses to use when presenting themselves and their products or services to consumers. The concept has taken off pretty well so far, with over 500 registered companies in 20 countries and about 2 new members per day.

This approach is great, as every time the membership list grows, the legitimacy of the association grows. This, in turn, makes the project and designation more recognizable to consumers, which of course increases the appeal of the idea to more and larger companies.

Of course, an annual $2M donation from MEC (on top of the rest of the contributions from the entire 1% For The Planet affiliates list) is definitely nothing I could shake my wallet at, but imagine what the numbers - and the planet - could look like with some truly massive corporate heavy-hitters on board.

(Photo above: "MEC's green roof among others" by Sookie.)


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