Saving threatened habitats worldwide

Dilemas for conservation

21 December, 2009 - 09:51 -- John Burton

The WLT is being supported by the Stella Artois Christmas advertising campaign. But this has brought a few criticisms. This is because although the Stella campaign involves an innovative electronic Christmas card, it also involves printing a page on the computer in order to view the card. So critics argue that this is damaging the environment.

I agree. No question, paper and all the associated issues involved in printing do use resources and are ultimately part of the problem of environmental degradation. I can't argue with that.

But for every card sent, Stella have committed to donating to the World Land Trust sufficient funds to the WLT to save a living tree, in the rainforests of Misiones, in Argentina. The idea was enthusiastically endorsed by the Governor of Misiones, as well as the relevant conservation officials from the province.

So one sheet of paper, will save a real, living rainforest tree. That's also a no-brainer, to use the modern terminolgy.

My view, and I am sure this would reflect the majority of the supporters of the WLT is that the world we live in is far from perfect, but if a major company like Stella is trying to promote the idea of saving forests, then it is to be encouraged. There will always be a trade-off. That's the very nature of marketing and publicity; the key is striking a balance, and moving forward. I hope that Stella Artois will become a brand leader in supporting habitat conservation. They have already supported watershed protection in South America, and helping the WLT fund the purchase of rainforests is another step forward. It is only by working WITH industry we can move forward. Simply attacking them rarely produces sustainable results.

But your feedback on a controversial issue tlike this would be welcome.


Submitted by Rafefore on

I could not agree more that it is important to work with industry towards mutually constructive goals. However and this is THE point with a few small tweaks either by using SMS technology negating the use of paper or by ensuring that the paper used in the advert is clearly recycled or re used the message would be so much stronger!

Submitted by John Burton on

I certainly agree with Rafefore. And everyone involved agrees. Basically it was a good idea, but needs perfecting.

But the bottom line is that we did save a lot of forest.

And it does show that industry is taking conservation seriously. If you check out the Stella Artois website, you will find they are also funding water conservation projects.

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