So, one day while I was perusing the internet, I stumbled across a group called Carrotmob. They are incredible. They are a group of individuals who believe global warming is a real problem. They also believe that corporations and businesses use the most energy and would do anything for money. That being the problem and solution; they would do anything for money.
For their first event they polled 23 liquor stores in a San Francisco neighborhood. They told these liquor stores that they would bring a crowd of people to buy from them, if they would give a portion of their sales that day towards making their business more energy-efficient. The liquor store that bid the highest percentage, at 22%, won the deal. So, Carrotmob brought in an environmental specialist to investigate the store, it’s energy consumption and the appliances being used. As a result, the environmental specialist provided an estimate as to how much money it would take to make the liquor store energy efficient.
The big day arrived, a Saturday afternoon and a crowd lined the entire block leading to the entrance of the liquor store. Two hours later the last people entered the store to buy some goodies. Luckily, the liquor store sold food and household items as well. People from the crowd were interviewed and all seemed genuinely motivated and touched that an organized buying event could have so much impact. Talks of moving to bigger corporations and making other demands started to sprout.
The store, owned by the Lee family, stated that their average weekday earnings equaled $1800-$2000 and their average weekend earnings equaled $3000. Their hopes were to earn $5000 the day of the Carrotmob event. Believe it or not, they earned over $9000. Three hundred sixty-six pounds of food that was bought, was donated to the San Francisco area food bank. With the help of rebates, enough money was raised for the store to completely redo its light system, lamps, ballasters, pay for the labor for the retrofit, buy new gaskets for the refrigerators and pay the hazardous waste disposal fee.
How incredible is that! All it takes is some organization and bringing people together to demand for greener business choices. Take it to the corporate level and let’s see what can happen. Funny enough, we are the consumers and the reason why things are created. That’s a pretty good position to be in. Let’s collect our money and start negotiating!