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On the March

Pet Age Staff//November 1, 2014//

On the March

Pet Age Staff //November 1, 2014//

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On September 21st, The Pet Industry Sustainability Coalition (PISC) joined 400,000 people on the streets of New York City in support of new greenhouse gas emission policies that will help keep the world from total global climate change chaos. Carrying signs that read “Bark if you love your planet” PISC joined what is now officially the largest climate march in history and the biggest public demonstration to take place in the US over the last decade.

Q: What was it like marching alongside so many people with a united goal?
A: Our primary audience is business-to-business so it was a nice change to engage with pet owners who expressed excitement to see the pet industry progressing toward a more sustainable model. People stopped us at every block to take pictures with us or to show us a photo of their pet. Some tried to get as much information as possible even jumping into the march to walk with us for long enough to jot down the website for more information.

Q: What does the People’s Climate March have to do with the pet industry?
A: As I looked around at the other picket signs that read “I am marching for sustainable farming” or “I am marching for social justice” it reminded me that there is no industry that escapes the same set of macro-sustainability issues.

Q: With more 100 members, were you concerned that some aren’t climate change believers?
A: Regardless of where your politics lie, it would be bad business not to consider resiliency strategies in a time of uncertainty. The UN reports that the decade between 2000 and 2010 was the hottest in recorded history. Increases in droughts and decreases in water availability have a direct tie to increased prices for commonly used commodities in the pet industry including cotton and protein sources. For some of our members, sustainability is essentially a resiliency strategy that will better position them to be relevant in an uncertain future.

Doing business on a finite planet brings tough issues that no industry has discovered the silver bullet for. A sense of urgency is at the root of our mission; we call ourselves an accelerator because we understand the need to synergistically build from existing technologies and systems that can leverage the entire industry toward a more sustainable business model. Our mission at PISC is more relevant than ever and it is exciting to represent a growing grassroots movement.

About the Pet Industry Sustainability
Coalition: The Pet Industry Sustainability
Coalition(PISC) strives to be the leading organization for sustainable advancement in the pet industry. PISC promotes creative collaboration throughout the pet industry that prioritizes business minded solutions for sincere
environmental improvement.

Caitlyn Bolton is the executive director of the Pet Industry Sustainability Coalition. She may be reached at [email protected].