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Green-Traffic-Light According to Information Resources, Inc. 2008, half of U.S. consumers consider at least one sustainability factor when selecting brands to buy or stores to shop. If you're in business, this is certainly a good reason to go green.  The more I read about green the more I know that green is more than a trend for our world, it is our world.

The other day I was buying a birthday present and instead of using a fancy paper gift bag I decided to purchase an ecofriendly bag that could be saved and used at the grocery store. I am becoming more conscious of how much paper I use and shred and frankly I'm ashamed. I do much of my food shopping at the Honest Weight Food Coop in Albany, New York and am surprised at how many people bring their own bags and how many of the bags are made of recyclable materials and are a permanent solution to plastic and paper bags.

2008 ImagePower Green Brands Survey also states, "Though U.S. consumers are more concerned about the economy than the environment these days, they still will pay more for green products." For most of us, business is slow and most retailers are looking for new ways to meet and keep customers. So why why not tout your "greenness" as much as you can? If you're going to talk the talk you had better walk the walk. In a 2008 survey by Burst Media, 12.1 % of consumers say they never believe the green claims and 65.3% say they sometimes do. Therein lies the reason: if you are going to build green into your business you'll have to "show 'em you mean it." Not sure how to go organic? Go here to learn.

Walk the walk seems to be the norm for Amy Rao, CEO of Integrated Archive Systems Inc. in Palo Alto, California. Amy  grants each of her 63 employees $10,000 toward the purchase of a gas-saving hybrid car. This is quite a commitment on Amy's part but she considers herself a committed environmentalist. Maybe you can reduce your own business travel or provide incentives for employees to use public transportation. How about buying bicycles for those who are willing to bike to work rather than drive? Whatever you do, get the word out to your customers via your business blog or through other media resources.

According to the American Solar Energy Society, by the year 2030, there will be 40 million jobs in the green sector, which will be up from 8.5 million in 2007.

Is the boomer your customer? Sara Wilson states that not only are boomers representing the biggest wealth transfer in history, they also started the green movement. They are concerned about the environment, health, financial planning, travel and everything in between!

November 26 is the last day of Green Week for NBC. If some of you are participating in green, let me know what you are doing.

I'm not sure that green beer on St. Patrick's Day qualifies.

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