walmart awash in green poo? / by Warrior Ant Press Worldwide Anthill Headquarters in Kansas City, Missouri, USA.

Walmart is set to unveil a major environmental project. When I first heard this news I thought, great, more corporate green-washing bullshit. Wallmart, destroyer of small town economies, Walmart, importer of cheap Chinese goods and advertiser of American made? That Walmart?

And then I read the questions that Walmart intends to ask it's suppliers. Questions intended to form the basis of a Sustainability Product Index that eventually will be placed on each item. Consumers can then make choices about which items to purchase and believe me, a certain percent of their shoppers will base their buying decisions on this Index. Not the solution to the world's problems, and certainly Walmart will expect people to spend money on products they may or may not need, but in the long term this is a good thing. Why? Walmart is a huge corporation and what they do has an impact on the many other aspects of the economy. When Momma and Poppa and Bubba are talking Sustainability Index in the aisles of Walmart, then there's hope that Momma and Poppa and Bubba politicians might be talking about sustainablity in the aisles of Congress.

None of this will get me to shop to at Walmart, but it's still encouraging.

Here are the questions that suppliers are expected to report to Walmart. A number of issues remain, for instance, exactly how the index will be calculated and will it be free of bias and interferences from companies who only care about placing products with the giant retailer.

Sustainability Product Index: 15 Questions for Suppliers
Energy and Climate: Reducing Energy Costs and Greenhouse Gas Emissions
1.Have you measured your corporate greenhouse gas emissions?
2.Have you opted to report your greenhouse gas emissions to the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP)?
3.What is your total annual greenhouse gas emissions reported in the most recent year measured?
4.Have you set publicly available greenhouse gas reduction targets? If yes, what are those targets?

Material Efficiency: Reducing Waste and Enhancing Quality

1.If measured, please report the total amount of solid waste generated from the facilities that produce your product(s) for Walmart for the most recent year measured.
2.Have you set publicly available solid waste reduction targets? If yes, what are those targets?
3.If measured, please report total water use from facilities that produce your product(s) for Walmart for the most recent year measured.
4.Have you set publicly available water use reduction targets? If yes, what are those targets?

Natural Resources: Producing High Quality, Responsibly Sourced Raw Materials

1.Have you established publicly available sustainability purchasing guidelines for your direct suppliers that address issues such as environmental compliance, employment practices and product/ingredient safety?
2.Have you obtained 3rd party certifications for any of the products that you sell to Walmart?

People and Community: Ensuring Responsible and Ethical Production
1.Do you know the location of 100 percent of the facilities that produce your product(s)?
2.Before beginning a business relationship with a manufacturing facility, do you evaluate the quality of, and capacity for, production?
3.Do you have a process for managing social compliance at the manufacturing level?
4.Do you work with your supply base to resolve issues found during social compliance evaluations and also document specific corrections and improvements?
5.Do you invest in community development activities in the markets you source from and/or operate within?