| ||company: World Watch Institute|
product: Good Stuff? free online guide
who: founded by Lester Brown in 1974, the Worldwatch Institute offers a unique blend of interdisciplinary research, global focus, and accessible writing that has made it a leading source of information on the interactions among key environmental, social, and economic trends. Its work revolves around the transition to an environmentally sustainable and socially just society - and how to achieve it.
what: Good Stuff? A Behind-the-Scenes Guide to the Things We Buy is a free online publication produced in partnership with nine organisations as a hands-on companion to Worldwatch’s annual State of the World report. Good Stuff traces what goes into the production, use, and disposal of 25 common consumer items, including compact discs, cell phones, baby goods, and chocolate. In addition to educating buyers about the environmental and social impacts of their purchases, the guide includes practical suggestions for living a ‘greener’, healthier life. It also contains a fun ‘eco-IQ’ quiz and a ‘challenge’ page where readers agree to take three actions for a better environment.
why: “(…) as individual consumers, we have surprising power to bring about positive change through our purchases,” says Research Associate Lisa Mastny, who co-directed the Good Stuff project.
Think of the ‘stuff’ you buy and use in any given day. You might have a chicken sandwich and a soda for lunch. You fill your car with petrol. You call a friend on your cell phone. At school or at the office, you print out dozens of e-mails and other documents. Now multiply these everyday actions by all the days in the year, and by the billions of other consumers worldwide. From gas-guzzling cars to clothes made in crowded sweatshops, the result is a significant impact on the planet and the people of the world.
change now: have you ever wondered where chocolate comes from, if antibacterial soap is good for your family, or how to recycle an old computer? Good Stuff contains many of the tips, facts, and links you'll need to start making more informed purchases that benefit your health and the environment.
Good Stuff aims to underline the fact that consumer choices represent daily opportunities to support alternatives that are better for our health and for the environment. Businesses, governments, and concerned citizens can harness their purchasing power to build markets for less-hazardous products such as organic foods, chemical-free cleaning products, ‘green’ electricity, and low-emission cars and trucks.