A green company acts, or claims to act, in a way which minimizes damage to the environment.
As global warming continues apace and becomes an increasingly "hot" topic amongst world governments, many companies are doing their part to become environmentally more responsible or "green".
Automotive companies like Honda, which is independently developing two new alternative-fueled vehicle technologies such as the natural gas powered Civic and a hydrogen fuel cell powered model, or General Motors which is developing a potentially exciting new car called the Chevrolet Volt, are very much aware of the damage that petroleum-burning vehicles can do to the environment as a whole - global warming notwithstanding.
Other companies such as GoVios Going Green, are doing their part by contributing a penny per minute of cell phone usage to environmental organizations. GoVios also stresses recycling used cell phones and their batteries as a way of keeping ground-water contaminating chemicals and heavy metals out of the environment.
The commercial airlines are getting into the act by finding ways of either cutting back their fuel usage or reducing pollution from ground equipment. Continental Airlines has on staff some 13 environmental specialists, full-time, working to find ways its company can be greener. Continental has spent more than $16 billion during the past decade to bring into its fleet more efficient aircraft to replace aging, less efficient planes.
Suncor, a Canadian-based oil company, was named a top performer among 23 global petroleum-producing firms with its environmentally responsible greenhouse gas management programs.
S.C. Johnson Company, maker of household items such as Windex and Ziploc plastic bags was environmentally aware long before it became cachet to be so. Using its innovative "Greenlist" process which serves to evaluate what environmental impact certain raw materials used in producing its products can have, S.C. Johnson has been able to eliminate some 1.8 million pounds of volatile organic compounds and 4 million pounds of polyvinylidene chloride from commonly used household items.
In 2009, Atlanta's Virginia-Highland became the first carbon-neutral zone in the United States. This partnership, developed by Verus Carbon Neutral, links 17 merchants of the historic Corner Virginia-Highland shopping and dining neighborhood retail district, through the Chicago Climate Exchange, to directly fund the Valley Wood Carbon Sequestration Project (thousands of acres of forest in rural Georgia).
Supporters of green companies claim that it is far more economical to go green than it is to continue adding harmful chemicals to the atmosphere and the environment in general.
Opponents believe that the environmental claims of "green companies" are often exaggerated and have variously raised accusations of greenwashing
- Jay, Kate (November 14, 2008), "First Carbon Neutral Zone Created in the United States", Reuters
- Auchmutey, Jim (January 26, 2009), "Trying on carbon-neutral trend", Atlanta Journal-Constitution