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Ideas to the rich

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Eco-friendly ideas to the rich

The majority of the people do not care much for the environment in their free time, that is why it may be important to remind them about environmentalism from time to time. Holidays or festivities like "Earth Day" can help reaching the masses, and can turn their spiritual development towards environmentalism. Religion used the same kind of trick long ago. The rich could support many environmental holidays or festivities. By the way, it would be good if an environmental holiday became as widespread as Christmas, or maybe more. In order to achieve this goal, the rich could do a campaign or a lobby. Note that "Earth Day" might be called "International Mother Earth Day" incorrectly, as Earth is not an animal, so it has no gender. We can even deem it possible that the life on Earth has more decision power than the stars on the Sky.

There are farmers who would like to produce ingredients of food on the land in an environmentally friendly way, but it is difficult for them to sell those ingredients of food. There are also restaurants that would like to have a trustworthy source of those ingredients, from which they could produce the food they offer. However, there can be traders who stand in-between, taking away some of the profit. That is why an alternative construction might be more sustainable, where the farmer and the restaurant would form one company. This way they could produce not only conventional food, but special food based on rare plants too. Also, they could produce the seeds for their own plants to make sure they are all right. This would be a great opportunity to create environmentally friendly restaurants (GMO-free food, ethically treated animals, no hybrid plants, not much chemicals, more vegetables). The rich could accelerate this process by taking part in the business.

The next idea comes from the example of FreeRice.com. In 2012, that website hosts a free quiz game, for example, about synonyms of English words, and for each correct answer, some grains of rice is donated to the hungry people in a poor country. The rice is paid by those whose advertisements are there on the website. Well, an improvement of this idea might be implemented by almost any good web programmer, and in 2012, there are already websites similar to FreeRice.com, but the rich could improve this idea more. The basic idea is that more customers could be attracted to some services by telling that a part of their profit goes for philantropic purposes, and in our case, for environmentalism. Different rates of giving away to philantropy might suit the different kinds of services, maybe zero, maybe 50%, maybe 100%. The rate can be higher for those services which do not need material goods or extra workforce. For example, works under copyright protection, social networking websites, concerts or tourist attractions can be made more popular and more profitable this way. This idea is worthy of a try instead of organizing prize games, too.

We can give our unneeded things away, exchange them for something else, or even sell them one by one. However, this might not be the thing that we want. Some of our things may be too valuable for giving away, but at the same time, too cheap for spending time with the selling. In many cases, we could earn more money by working than by spending the same time taking photos of our stuff, uploading them to auction websites, writing messages to the buyers, and arranging the details of shipments. Exchange or barter may also need too much time. That is why it would be handy if there were a trader who would buy all of our old (either usable or repairable - in short, sellable) stuff in bulk, and sell them in a shop. Actually, this is not a new idea, so there may be examples of it in the world, but not yet in every city and town. There may be shops which buy and sell used books, used clothes, used gadgets, or things from the previous centuries, but shops are rare that buy or sell every kind of cheap and sellable object. However, people might consider buying used prams, bicycles, toys, tools, collections, musical instruments, furniture, or anything else which endures and can be bought in other shops. The rich could open shops which would buy and sell every sellable thing, and this could lessen the need for new things and the pressure on the environment.

Further readings

(these were not necessarily read by the author):

Global Reporting Initiative - G4 Sustainability Reporting Guidelines (Amsterdam, 2013)

David Bornstein - How to Change the World: Social Entrepreneurs and the Power of New Ideas, Updated Edition (Oxford University Press, USA; 2007)

Eco-friendly business ideas (chapter left out)

In a world where the good learners were richer, the free version of this book could have more chapters by this, too.