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• The Wall Street Journal reports that Walmart Canada is sponsoring a Green Business Summit next month in Vancouver - on February 10, the day before the Winter Olympics begin there.

According to the story, “The conference will bring together more than 300 leaders from government, non-government organizations, and business to share best practices and new ideas in areas like energy and waste management. David Suzuki, Canada's legendary environmental activist, is the keynote speaker.”

Among the companies attending will be a number of Walmart competitors: Loblaw, Shoppers Drug Mart, Home Depot, Staples, and Best Buy. However, several competitors that were invited are not planning to attend, including Sobeys and Metro.
KC's View:
I can understand why some competitors don’t want to attend a Walmart-sponsored conference...after all, some might think that this concedes issue leadership to the Bentonville Behemoth. On the other hand, there is the old truism that if you are not part of the solution you are part of the problem.

Here’s the one thing that everybody needs to keep in mind as they develop their own environmental philosophies, strategies and tactics: Walmart will do everything it can to establish leadership on this issue and then extract the maximum financial and marketing benefit from its actions.

This is the reality of Walmart’s approach to the environment: it wants to create an environment in which it gets the maximum possible advantage.