At the moment, financial experts are reporting that more money is flowing into green technology than ever before. But what exactly is green technology and what makes an investment environmentally friendly? This can be a tricky question to answer, because when it comes to technology things are rarely simply green or not – there are many different shades of green.
Defining Green Investments
The definition of a green investment is a traditional investment vehicle, such as a mutual fund, exchange fund or stock, which has an underlying business that is involved in improving the environment. However, this is a very loose category to define. For example, companies “improving the environment” can include everything from alternative energy technology companies to manufacturers of energy-saving appliances to small businesses that sell cloth nappies or organic produce.
Because there are different individual opinions on what is best for the environment, defining exactly what qualifies as a green investment can be very difficult. For example, one person might invest in an oil company that has a great record for environmentally friendly practices while another person might object to investing in an oil company on principle because of how burning fossil fuels contributes to global warming.
Beware of Greenwashing
One thing to consider when making green investments is the fact that many corporations want you to think that they are greener than they actually are. This is an advertising spin called “Greenwashing” and it is performed by more companies than you might think. Going green, even if only in image, means great publicity and attention for a company – which means an increase to the bottom line.
If you are considering investing in a company but you think it is guilty of greenwashing, you can always do your research to find out the real story. There is a lot of backlash on the internet against deceptive greenwashing tactics and you should be able to perform a search and find the other side of the story. Not every company will lie about their environmental practices, but you don’t want to invest your money in a company that is dishonest and unethical. If green marketing seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Choosing the Right Green Investments for You
Investing in companies that engage in practices that are good for the environment is a great way to show your support. You can make a profit from your investment, while feeling good about the impact it is having on the world.
When you are making an investment, it is important to do your research into the practices and the policies of the company so that you can make an informed decision. Does the company adhere to your environmental values and do you believe that it is having a positive effect on the health of our planet? Take your time and choose the right investment, voting with your money for something that gives you hope for the future of the planet.
Samantha Smith is a average blogger, whos interests are investments and the stock market. She has done blogs for a wide range of investment companies such as Emerald Knight Consultants.