Jim Moriarty is the CEO of Surfrider Foundation. He is an avid surfer, entrepreneur and innovator. Moriarty has more than 15 years management experience in corporate start-ups, specializing in e-learning, e-commerce, infrastructure software, and business-to-business ventures. He holds a B.S. in Information Systems from The Ohio State University, and has had speaking engagements in the US, Europe, Australia and Latin America. He lives with his wife and two children in Solana Beach, CA, where he is also active leading and mentoring high school students on surfing and home-building trips to the Baja Peninsula. He brings to the position a wealth of international, fundraising and team-building experience that translate to leading the Surfrider Foundation.
Question: Why have businesses started going green?
Jim Moriarty: I think businesses understood what they needed to understand and that is that their business models over a ten-- So businesses are responsible to their stake holders. They don’t answer to the CEO or just the board. That’s kind of a mythical, simplistic view, oh, everyone answers to the CEO. No. They actually answer to the stake holders, the stake holders or the stockholders and the stock goes up and down based on their confidence in a business’s understanding of the future and how to capitalize on the future. So all of a sudden people look at Wal-Mart, hey, it’s growing great, oh, it’s doubling, it’s tripling, it’s buying this nation and everything else, and Wal-Mart’s growing, great growth story. Okay, but at what cost? Oh, there’s this issue of labor here, there’s this issue, the stock goes down. All of a sudden Wal-Mart’s understanding oh, we can actually decrease our costs by having Rice-A-Roni or maybe it’s Hamburger Helper noodles flat-packed like they do in Ikea to have the packaging be smaller, save on shipping costs, save on all these things, so they’re going all the way to the bank. So Wal-Mart, big, huge monolith making great business decisions, saving money, good environmental decisions using less paper, less packing, less fuel, everything, that’s a shift in business thinking. All of a sudden Wal-Mart’s making these kind of decisions. Wal-Mart’s a leader so when Wal-Mart says something to their supply chain in a sense they’ve said it to the entire retail supply chain, clothing, food, everything, huge, huge statement. That’s the last 18-month kind of thing.
Recorded on: 9/27/07