Take Action For Change
The American Sustainable Business Council Action Fund, which is affiliated with ASBC but is legally and financially separate, invites you to join in advocating for legislation, administrative action, and initiatives that make possible a more vibrant, just and sustainable economy.
Benefit corporations (also known as B Corps) are a different kind of corporation. While most companies focus on putting profits first - in some cases, even being required by law to focus on profits - B Corps are required to create benefits for society as well as shareholders. This can include volunteering in the community or other sustainable development.
For District of Columbia businesses and residents only
The District of Columbia City Council is taking up benefit corporation legislation. The Benefit Corporation Act was introduced in the Council of the District of Columbia, co-sponsored by Phil Mendelson, Michael Brown, and Mary Cheh, Bill Number B19-0584. The next step is to urge Committee Chair Councilmember Alexander to hold a hearing on the bill. Show your support for benefit corporations in DC by signing the petition. Learn more about Benefit...
Efforts are underway to pass benefit corporation legislation in Nevada. Benefit Corporations are a cost free tool that will further economic development as well as bring considerable social and environmental improvements to Nevada. Benefit corporation legislation supports entrepreneurship and fosters greater social impact investment in our local companies and communities. Show your support by signing the petition today.
Public investments are essential to the success of our society, the strength of our economy, and our quality of life. From highways to communications systems, from guaranteeing student loans and mortgages to reducing unfair credit card fees, from keeping our food safe to keeping our water supply clean, we all rely on government-funded systems in our daily lives. We take these things for granted so much that they have become "invisible" to most of us. But they are a critical guarantee for our quality of life in America.
Gov. Cuomo proposes increasing New York’s outdated minimum wage. A higher minimum wage makes good business sense. It puts money in the hands of New Yorkers who will put it right back into local businesses, buying needed goods and services. Businesses also see cost savings from lower employee turnover and reduced expenses associated with hiring and training new employees. Higher wages increase productivity and improve product quality, customer satisfaction and company reputation. Increasing minimum wage also reduces the strain on our social safety net caused by inadequate wages....
One of the biggest challenges to the sluggish economic recovery is that real wages have not increased despite many businesses showing record profits. Consumer spending is at the heart of our economy and with little to no wage growth, overall economic growth will suffer and the recovery will not be durable. The Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2013 addresses the largest problem business leaders see with today’s economy: weak demand.
This campaign is coordinated by the Business for a Fair Minimum Wage coalition.
The U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v.FEC decision allowed corporations to spend unlimited money to support or oppose candidates for political office, overturning campaign finance laws in place for decades. Since then, millions in unrestricted secret spending has flowed into campaigns, distorting our democracy and threatening good government. On June 26, the Supreme Court extended the damage, overturning Montana’s century-old ban on corporate spending in state elections.
Transparency in campaign finance is a key element to ensure the electoral system works fairly without undue influence from major corporations. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is considering a rule to force public companies to disclose their political spending to their shareholders. This simple rule would bring accountability to previously unaccounted for political spending. Send a comment today to the SEC to express your support for this rule. Money in politics is having a devastating impact on our democracy and in turn on so many businesses, particularly small and medium....
For New York businesses and residents only
As executives, owners, investors, and businesses, we must ask ourselves: Are our goals furthered by this greater freedom to spend our companies’ money to influence campaigns? Is this ability to influence politicians and elections helpful—or does it set us back in our efforts to operate our businesses responsibly and promote a vibrant, equitable, and sustainable economy? If you believe that campaign finance reform is needed in NYS, please join us in by signing on below.
With concerns growing over the impacts of the sequester budget cuts, we believe Congress should put an end to these taxpayer-paid subsidies to an industry that is enjoying record profits. Across-the-board sequester cuts will reduce air pollution monitoring, scale back Superfund cleanups and reduce funding clean water and drinking water projects. Closing tax loopholes and subsidies to the oil industry would have positive impact on the federal budget by generating revenue for smart investment in our economy and help businesses and the environment.
The recent development of high-volume hydraulic fracturing, often referred to as “fracking” or “unconventional” shale gas drilling, has raised serious concerns about its impacts on the environment, public health, and local and regional economies. The practice involves injecting millions of gallons of water, sand and chemicals deep into the earth at extremely high pressure to fracture rock formations and release trapped deposits of natural gas and/or oil.
The businesses represented by the American Sustainable Business Council, like other businesses, value clean affordable energy that is not vulnerable to foreign policy-induced supply disruptions. With climate change presenting an ever more daunting challenge to the nation’s economic well-being, ASBC is mobilizing businesses to support clean energy and efficiency programs and policies.
Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) are state mandates which require utilities to produce a certain amount of energy from renewable sources of energy, such as wind, solar and biofuel, within a specific time frame. The standards vary from state to state - for example, North Carolina mandates 12.5% clean energy production by 2021 while Colorado calls for 30% by 2020.
Information on the Clean Energy Victory Bonds Act of 2013 will soon be available. For information on the Clean Energy Victory Bonds Act of 2012, please read the following.
Reliable, long-term financing has been one of the greatest obstacles to moving the nation toward a clean energy future. Clean Energy Victory Bonds can be a big part of the solution. The Clean Energy Victory Bonds Act of 2012 works to create an investment vehicle that allows Americans to invest in one of the fastest growing sectors in the global economy, as well as a means to collectively provide a secure...
President Obama last year delayed the final decision the Keystone XL Pipeline. Since then, the President promised in his second inaugural address that the United States would “respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray...
In 2012, the EPA revised its rules on new source performance standards (NSPS) of greenhouse gas emissions, resulting in stricter regulations on future power plants. Unfortunately, these rules do not address existing power plants, which tend to be heavy greenhouse gas producers. What’s more, recent initiatives by the 112th Congress have been aimed at undermining the EPA's authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants. These efforts, no doubt, will continue in the 113th Congress, and are not in the business community's or the...
Given the challenges small businesses and entrepreneurs face in raising capital to help them grow and compete, the crowdfunding concept is a viable solution. Crowdfunding, especially in the context of community-based financing of local projects, has the potential when done correctly to be a very useful tool in opening up access to capital for business. Crowdfunding, simply put, is raising investment funding in small increments from a large number of people often through Internet marketing.
Today, studies have shown that over 90% of Americans are concerned about what is in their food, but there is still no federal mandate requiring the labeling of GMO’s in America. GMO’s are “genetically modified organisms” either plants or animals that were created through gene splicing techniques of biotechnology, or more commonly known as “genetically engineered.” Today over 70% of all food consumed in the U.S. contains GMO’s. For two decades, seed companies and the agribusiness have resisted calls to let consumers know what’s in their food....
The Farm Bill represents billions of dollars in government expenditures that set the farm, food, and rural policy goals and priorities for the United States. After the 2012 Farm Bill failed to pass, action on the new 2013 Farm Bill has begun to heat up, as the House and the Senate have both issued drafts of their farm bills- legislation that will profoundly shape our nation’s food and farm system for the next five years.
Make Sure the ACA Doesn’t Discriminate Against Complementary and Alternative Medicine
ASBC and its partner, the Integrative Healthcare Policy Consortium (IHPC) is launching a strategic state-by-state campaign to support the implementation of Section 2706 of the Affordable Care Act in 2013. Section 2706 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is titled “Nondiscrimination in Health Care.” It requires that insurers include and reimburse licensed health care providers in health insurance plans. Our goal is to ensure that chiropractors, M.D.’s, naturopathic...
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act tackles many of the serious problems small business owners face, including escalating health care costs, lack of access to affordable coverage, and limited choice among health plans. We support the full implementation of the plan, which benefits both small businesses and the economy as a whole. We applaud the Supreme Court’s decision to affirm the constitutionality of the Act and call on all states to move ahead with its implementation.
The Internet, broadband, and telephony provide the means for a far-reaching social and environmental change by laying the foundation for a new future of work. The number one contributor to carbon and environmental emissions in the U.S. is squarely rooted in how we work. By encouraging telecommuting and working from home, we can save energy and money while cutting greenhouse gases that cause climate change.
Government regulations have been ridiculed as “job killers.” However, small-business owners know that regulations play an essential role in leveling the playing field by offering protection from big business. Regulations are the rules by which all businesses must play for orderly and fair competition in the market place.
Leading companies from electronics manufacturers to health care providers are highly motivated to identify and use safer alternatives to toxic chemicals. Recent polling by ASBC confirms that today's business leaders are concerned about the health and business impacts that could arise if the products they use or sell contain toxic chemicals, as well as the toxic chemical exposures that may occur as a result of their supply chains.
We have a historic opportunity to transform the chemical industry, create jobs and build a new economic powerhouse by putting in place essential policies to create the right market-based incentives to propel green chemistry in the United States. Without action, the U.S. could lose this nascent but fast moving economic engine overseas, along with the hundreds of thousands of projected new jobs, and $190 Billion of the $1 trillion renewable chemical market production.
The current cosmetics industry is outdated and dangerous. The industry is not properly regulated and is including harmful ingredients linked to long term health problems for employees and consumers as well as great harm to the environment. The lack of industry reform places the safer and responsible cosmetics companies at a great disadvantage. The Safe...
American business leaders are speaking out in dismay over the American Chemistry Council’s recent political attacks on the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED v4 (formerly known as LEED 2012) standard for offering a voluntary credit for avoidance of chemicals of concern.
For California businesses and residents only
The state of California released proposed regulations to implement a groundbreaking program—The Safer Consumer Products regulations—that will, for the first time, create and prioritize a list of chemicals of concern in consumer products, require alternatives assessment on prioritized chemicals, and regulate the chemicals, if necessary. The program will create opportunities for California businesses to capture a growing global market for green products and services and will keep California businesses...
States across the country are taking up legislation to require purchasing decisions by state and local government to give priority to American made goods—also known as domestic content provisions. These provisions leverage taxpayer dollars to stimulate job creation here at home rather than overseas. Polls show there is strong bipartisan support for “Buy American” provisions when taxpayer dollars are at stake. ASBC believes that an essential component to creating a truly sustainable economy is to reinvest local dollars back into local economies. Domestic...
There is no justification for tax avoidance and evasion through offshore tax havens. Everyone needs to pay his or her fair share to keep America moving forward. Tax dodging deprives our nation of revenue needed to maintain and modernize the infrastructure and services underpinning a strong economy. An estimated $100 billion or more in tax revenue is lost every year. Our economic progress is undermined when companies are rewarded for financial manipulation rather than innovation and productive investment.
Unlike brick and mortar businesses, online retailers have the unfair advantage of selling items on the Internet without collecting sales taxes while the “Main Street” businesses are obligated to collect and remit them. This imbalance hits locally owned businesses particularly hard and, as a result, adversely impacts local economies. Small businesses lose out on revenue and state governments lose out on the money needed to pay for necessary services, such as infrastructure funding. As E-commerce continues to grow, the problem will only intensify. Tell the House to support...
Corporate tax reform is coming—you can help determine whether it makes things better or worse. Join the campaign for corporate tax reform that closes loopholes, levels the playing field between big business and small, increases transparency and assures adequate revenue for the infrastructure and services underpinning our economy.
We call on Congress and President Obama to let the Bush-era top bracket tax cuts for those with taxable incomes over $200,000 (individual) and $250,000 (couple) expire no later than December 31, 2012, as now scheduled, without another extension. The increased revenue, nearly $1 trillion over ten years, should go toward making long overdue investments in job creation, education, health, renewable energy, transportation, and other infrastructure.