Tuesday, 19 February 2013

The Mafia - and Greenpeace - way of approaching "clients"

"I'm gonna make him an offer he can't refuse"
Don Vito Corleone

There have been a lot of reports about the Italian mafia entering the "green" energy business, favored by Greenpeace, WWF and other similar climate change lobby groups. However, it also works the other way around:
Here is a description of how the Sicilian mafia approaches its clients:
Mafiosi approach potential clients in an aggressive but friendly manner, like a door-to-door salesman.[137] They may even offer a few free favors as enticement. If a client rejects their overtures, mafiosi sometimes coerce them by vandalizing their property or other forms of harassment.-
In many situations, mafia bosses prefer to establish an indefinite long-term bond with a client, rather than make one-off contracts. The boss can then publicly declare the client to be under his permanent protection (his "friend", in Sicilian parlance). This leaves little public confusion as to who is and isn't protected, so thieves and other predators will be deterred from attacking a protected client and prey only on the unprotected.[139]
Mafiosi generally do not involve themselves in the management of the businesses they protect or arbitrate. Lack of competence is a common reason, but mostly it is to divest themselves of any interests that may conflict with their roles as protectors and arbitrators. This makes them more trusted by their clients, who need not fear their businesses being taken over.
Read the entire article here

Here are two descriptions of how Greenpeace approaches its "clients":

Kumi Naidoo, executive director of Greenpeace International, February 15, 2013:

"A few weeks ago, the McDonald's chief executive pulled out of the Natural Refrigerants Alliance. So to get them back in, I had two options: start another campaign against McDonald's – which eats up resource time – or use another route. So I had 15 minutes with Muhtar Kent, chief executive, Coca Cola, and I said he needed to pick up the phone and call the chief executive of McDonald's, who he is friends with, and he agreed to it. Also, I am able to call Kent and say "Listen, I understand that you are a part of this association at the state level that has been lobbying against climate, and you guys have to make up your mind which side of the fence are you on because it is inconsistent. You are doing some really positive things on climate action in your practice, but actually you're part of a business coalition that is pushing in the other direction."

Read the entire article here

The Coca Cola Company, January 2012:

The consensus on climate science is increasingly unequivocal -- global climate change is happening and man-made greenhouse gas emissions are a crucial factor.The implications of climate change for our planet are profound and wide-ranging, with expected impacts on biodiversity, water resources, public health, and agriculture.

As an extension of our efforts, The Coca-Cola Company co-founded "Refrigerants, Naturally!"with McDonald's and Unilever along with support from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and Greenpeace. This is an example of public-private collaboration on innovative solutions for climate protection.

Read the entire article here

Greenpeace, August 2009:

Kimberly-Clark has, as a result of public pressure, released a new environmental fibre policy that governs how it will help conserve forests and support sustainable forestry and use more recycled fibre.

Greenpeace's Kleercut campaign was launched in November 2004.
This campaign to help protect ancient forests in Canada and globally applied pressure on the company via the marketplace and its large customers and consumers. In order to highlight the issue, hundreds of protests took place globally, resulting in more than 50 activists arrested in acts of peaceful civil disobedience. Scientific and exposé reports, media mobilization and shareholder engagement were also an important part of the campaign.

This work and dedication reached a successful conclusion with Kimberly-Clark’s release of the strongest paper policy by one of the world’s top three tissue product manufacturers.

Read the entire article here

Kimberly-Clark, August 2009:

In 2009, Kimberly-Clark and Greenpeace, a leading environmental organization, began working together to reinforce the company's progressive fiber sourcing standards. The agreement has brought additional protection to special forest areas and clear targets for Kimberly-Clark to increase its usage of environmentally-preferred fibers in our North American tissue products. To further our stakeholder engagement, we have continuous dialogue with Greenpeace to gain their perspective on other important sustainability issues.
Read the entire article here

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