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Sustainability and Business: Home

The terms "sustainability" and "green" are frequently used by companies and industries in their communications with investors and in marketing products and services to consumers. This guide aims to help you find information on these topics

Sustainability and Business

The term "sustainability" has come into common useage in the U.S. and elsewhere in recent years.  Often used interchangeably with "green" to describe products and services, the exact meaning sustainability can be hard to pin down.  In fact, "sustainable" and "green" can mean different things to different people or institutions.  Some consumers are interested in buying sustainable or green products.  What are consumers motivations in seeking out these products?  What do consumers understand these terms to mean?  At the same time, many businesses and industries also refer to sustainability when discussing the products and services they sell and in their communications with investors.  What motivates cocmpanies to discuss these issues?  Is it a question of public image of the company? Good for the bottom line?   

Keywords to Consider Using When Searching

Keywords to Consider Using When Researching Sustainability and Related Issues


General Sustainability Keywords

Sustainable, sustainability, renewable, green, carbon neutral, carbon footprint,

eco-, earth-friendly, recycled-content, biodegradable, compostable, green-washing,

embodied energy, groundwater, aquifer depletion, climate change, global warming,

agricultural runoff, water quality, air quality, electronic waste, e-waste, energy efficient,

high-efficiency, hybrid car, electric car


Fossil Fuels Keywords

Gasoline, petrol, petroleum, natural gas, liquified natural gas (LNG), liquid propane (LP), propane,

diesel, low-sulfur diesel, hydraulic fracturing, fracking, horizontal drilling,

oil sands, tar sands, shale gas, shale oil, petroleum distillates, oil refinery,

petroleum refinery, pipeline, deepwater drilling,


Renewable Energy Keywords

Wind turbines, windmills, wind farm, hydroelectric, geothermal, batteries,

energy storage, off-the-grid, grid-tied, net metering, solar panels, photovoltaic (PV) panels,

solar thermal panels, biofuels, biodiesel, ethanol, methanol






Online Library Resources

Fossil fuels are familiar to most of us:  gasoline or diesel power out cars and trucks, coal and natural gas are commonly used to produce electricity around the U.S., homes and buidlings may be heated by natural gas or oil.  More and more, renewable energy sources such as wind, solar, and biofuels are part of the energy discussion in the U.S. and around the world.