Online shopping is crowing out traditional stores, and the planet is better for it. BBC reports that Staples is shutting its doors all across North America in a big downsizing of its brick-and-mortar retail presence:
US office supplier Staples said it will close 225 stores in North America, more than 10% of its presence, as shoppers move online and its sales slump […]“A year ago, we announced a plan to fundamentally reinvent our company,” said Ron Sargent, Staples’ chief executive.“With nearly half of our sales generated online today, we’re meeting the changing needs of business customers and taking aggressive action to reduce costs and improve efficiency.”
Those losing jobs because of these closings deserve sympathy, but the world also just got a little greener. E-commerce will drastically reshape the whole mall centered American way of life. It will mean less driving on the part of the consumer, and it will allow companies to ship precise merchandise to those who order it instead of shuttling product back and forth between stores and warehouses. Readers know we are often critical of bad green policies on this site. But if the green movement would only realize that the transition from an industrial economy to an information economy is the way to cut pollution and fossil fuel use, it could have a bright future.