01:23pm | 09/02/2021

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An environmental purist will tell you that any company started after 1992, who hasn’t taken environmental sustainability as part of their core values and activity from their inception; or any business who didn’t start making the turn towards being green then, is the equivalent of a blood diamond – and we certainly empathise with this. 

We definitely feel the same frustration with every car manufacturer all of a sudden releasing ads saying “it’s all about electric, we’re all about change,” when these very same companies significantly contributed, for the worse, to the climate crisis. We know the feeling of injustice from knowing it took legislation being put in place to finally force these business’ hands, from knowing that legislation took over 40 years of battling to get in place and from it pretty much being half way through the 15 year notice period these company demanded so the ‘change’ their so boastful of now wouldn’t be too disruptive to their pockets. Trust us when we say, we know the frustration.

The fact is the roots of environmentalism stem back to 1700s and that you would have had to have your head buried in sand for the last 30 years to not know there were serious issues afoot. Think about this, next June will be the 30 year anniversary of the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) and as stated, that was a long way from the start of the movement… 30 years

30 YEARS! When that convention took place, Microsoft had only been a public company 6 years and were running Windows 3.1x (the prequel to Windows 95) on MS-DOS. A mac was still a Macintosh, the iPod wasn’t even a pipe dream and 1 share in Apple would put you back 26p (US$1000 investment would now be worth roughly $4.4m). The world trade centres hadn’t been attacked for the first time, Nokia were on the 1011 and colour screens on mobile weren’t a thing. Pac-man was at it’s pomp, the original game boy was 2 years old.

Warne had just bowled the Gatting ball, Gascoigne had broken into tears 2 years previously, the Williams sisters were 11 and 12 years old, Tom Brady was 13, Tiger Woods was 4 years from turning pro. The world wide web was 3 years old. Silence of the Lambs had just come out, Judi Dench was yet to be M, Shawshank Redemption had just gone into production and Friends wasn’t even a concept. For any businesses to claim that environmentalism is new movement and that they haven’t had time to fully adapt to it is simply ridiculous.

However, we try to put that frustration aside and take a pragmatic approach. The theme of positive reinforcement runs throughout our services, rather than saying “don’t, don’t, don’t, don’t, don’t” – we prefer “do”. You can put a lot of faith in our uncertified network from the knowledge that we have consulted with many industry and academic experts in developing the criteria by which we approve businesses and our code of ethics. In that criteria, we made the decision that despite a company’s potential ‘bad credit’ when it comes to the environment, we make our certification and research-based vetting decisions considering only the activity the business is undertaking right now and plan to in the next 12 months. If they are doing the right things now, if they appear to be ticking the boxes, we’ll give them the benefit of the doubt- and if they’re not or prove not to be, they won’t be included or taken off the network.

The unfortunate truth is that you can’t 100% trust our research because sadly, some people and businesses won’t let a thing like ethics get in the way of making money. Therefore, we recommend you to still adopt an element of caution in using the Uncertified Network, make final decisions yourself on whether the businesses are really adopting eco-friendly practices. We also invite you to use our feedback features to help develop the network, flagging or confirming the businesses we’ve found, so together we can build a green economy that everyone can trust in.