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Organizations Pushing For Change

Reborn. In nature worms to caterpillars, which is one of nature's dramatic changes.

In the human world change usually happens because individuals form organizations that focus on actions that will bring about change. Today's alphabet letters include F-L.

Fair Labor Association (FLA) This organization has been around since 1999 and operates under the conviction that “all goods should be produced fairly and ethically,” bringing together three groups – universities, civil society organizations and socially responsible companies – to create sustainable solutions to solve systemic labor issues. The FLA offers tools and resources to businesses, delivers training to factory workers and management, conducts due diligence through independent assessments and advocates for greater accountability and transparency in supply chains.

Fair Trade Certified The nonprofit Fair Trade USA is the leading certifier of fair trade products in North America. The Fair Trade Certified seal on a product shows that it was made according to standards that promote sustainable livelihoods and safe working conditions, protection of the environment, and strong, transparent supply chains. According to the nonprofit, the seal is given to thousands of products, sending $740 million to farmers and workers since 1998.

Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) This organization has been around for about 25 years and is devoted to promoting sustainable forest management. The FSC provides two main types of certification: FSC Forest Management and FSC Chain of Custody. An independent organization audits the forest or supply chain to ensure businesses meet FSC standards, which cover issues ranging from environmental impact and community relations to workers’ rights and monitoring and assessment. The FSC also has three product labels: FSC 100%, which means all the materials are sourced from certified forests; FSC Recycled, which means products are made from 100% recycled content, whether pre- or post-consumer; and FSC Mix, which means products are made from a combination of certified forests, recycled materials or FSC-controlled wood.

Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) This organization guarantees organic fibers, from the field to fashion, using a quality assurance system based on on-site inspection and certification of the entire textile supply chain. According to GOTS, it’s a “stringent voluntary global standard for the entire post-harvest processing of apparel and home textiles made with certified organic fiber and includes both environmental and social criteria.”

Green America This organization certifies companies that are committed to using businesses as a platform of social change. Companies that receive the Green Business Certification must meet and exceed a set of standards to operate a values-based enterprise that follows the principles of social justice and environmental sustainability. They must be environmentally responsible in how they source, manufacture and market materials. Gold Certified Green Businesses are a tier above the first designation, and firms can earn this distinction after completing additional work beyond the general certification.

LEED This certification, an acronym for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is given out by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). A building project earns points by meeting standards for areas like carbon, energy, water, waste, transportation, materials, health and indoor environmental quality. Projects go through a verification and review process and can be awarded with various levels of certification: Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum. According to USGBC, there are more than 100,000 buildings participating in the program today.

Note- Once again, our A-Z look at sustainability was pulled from ASI, Advertising Specialty Institute articles.

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