By shopping more consciously, you can make sure you’re supporting sustainable and ethical companies and products.
Before you buy a product, consider where it came from. What company made and distributed it? Were its components sustainably and ethically sourced? What are the company’s values, policies, and practices?
Watch out for greenwashing! Greenwashing is a marketing technique used by companies where they market their products as “green” “natural” or “eco-friendly” to attract conscious buyers to make people believe that the company is doing much more to protect the environment than they actually are.
Vote for climate action with your dollars. Purchase products that promote sustainability, health, equity, and climate action. Invest in companies that do the same and use your power as an investor or shareholder to let companies know what kind of practices you want to see for our planet and future generations. You can also influence institutions that you support to make sure they are not helping industries recklessly pollute and harm society.
As a shareholder or investor, you have the power to ensure that your money is funding sustainable and ethical corporate practices.
Ask your financial advisor:
- How can I align my investment portfolio with my values?
- Will you show me the impact my investments are having?
- Can I screen my portfolio for positive and negative investments?
- Can my child’s college savings plan be invested in socially responsible funds?
- How might I assert my influence as a shareholder?
- Have you seen reports by firms that show that companies that use Environmental, Social, and Governance criteria (ESGs) measuring the sustainability and social impact of investment in a company or business have proven to be sound investments?
Reach out to institutions you support (colleges and universities, for example) and find out where their investment policies stand. Alumni often hold a lot of power over university investment practices. Read your alma mater’s financial reports and research their policies and commitments. Support campus campaigns for increased transparency and divestment from fossil fuels and other unsustainable and unethical practices.
How to Get Socially Conscious Funds into your 401(k), NY Times, Jan. 10, 2020