The Business of Sustainability
This chapter lays out the principal aims of the book and its contribution. It shows that business drove unprecedented wealth creation over the last two hundred years but the cost was unprecedented environmental pollution resulting in new geological era known as the Anthropocene Age. Already in the nineteenth century there was resistance which mostly took the form of elite conservation movements. Overlooked has been the advent of green entrepreneurs who sought to create new firms to facilitate sustainability. Today there is much discussion about green entrepreneurship, but these figures predate today’s green entrepreneurs by a century. The book breaks new ground in business history by looking at these many small and marginal entrepreneurial figures, who were often highly unconventional. The book will explore what has motivated green entrepreneurs in each generation, how they built businesses, and whether they achieved their goals.
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