After a year of struggling with what it means for a corporation to "go green", the Securities and Exchange Commission has finally announced its new "Corporate Green Initiative" in the form of 1500 pages of new regulations. According to SEC Chairman Mary L. Schapiro, all U.S. based corporations will be required by 2011 to change their logos, products and other corporate trademarks to the color green.
An angry Muhtar Kent, Chairman and CEO of The Coca Cola Company, said it would cost "millions of dollars and be wasteful for Coke to be forced to change its cans and bottles to green" and this sentiment was shared by CEO's of every major corporation we spoke to.
"Green cars, green refrigerators, green pencils, green eggs and ham?" asked a spokesman for the National Association of Manufacturers. "Is Dr. Seuss running our government or what?"
A bit on the defensive, Ms. Schapiro said, "Hey, here at the SEC, we really have no idea what 'going green' means, but the President wants reform so we're coming at this from a direction that makes sense to us." Asked how this new initiative will make corporations more environmentally sensitive, Ms. Schapiro offered, "Look, it's going to take some baby steps and stumbles to get corporations to think green. We're just trying to speed up the process and, frankly, we hope that they will figure this whole 'green thing' out on their own."
Later in the press conference, Schapiro was asked why it takes 1,500 pages of regulations to deal with the color green. She confided that, "the green thingie only takes a few pages. The rest of it has to do with which corporate supporters of the President get exclusions and extensions."