Plan B

There is no Planet B.

I love this slogan, as far as slogans go, for a number of reasons.

It reflects the global nature of the challenge we are all facing. He waka eke noa. We are all in this together.

It reflects the need to do something. It’s not a choice. There is no other planet we can up and move to. And we’d just end up ruining that one anyway. This is potentially an existential threat and unless we slow, and stop, and then reverse our impacts on the environment, we’re condemning future generations to living in a depleted and dwindling world, if they get to live at all.

And, in contrast to that dire scenario, I just love the play on words.

While there is no Planet B, there is a growing global movement working on something of a Plan B – a ‘B Economy’ that works for everyone for the long term. In this B Economy companies strive to be the best for the planet, people and the environment on which our quality of life depends. They balance profit and purpose and hold themselves transparently accountable to improve their impacts on their workers, customers, community and the environment. In short, they’re using business as a force for good.

Companies can become certified (B-Corps) through a process of self-assessment and verification. As well as a framework to assess whether companies meet certification standards, the system provides steps for improvement and a transparent scorecard for each company.

There’s a competitive element too, and the B-Corp website seems to encourage companies to outdo each other for bragging rights at the top of the points leaderboard. Call me naive, but I suspect the companies that achieve B-Corp certification are there for reasons other than competitive oneupmanship.

At the time of writing there are 30 certified B-Corps in New Zealand, including Ethique who I wrote about last year. It would be great to see many more.

Check out the list of NZ’s certified B-Corps here and support them if you can.

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