Jack Ma, influential business leader and founder of Alibaba and Taobao, sat down with Charles Bedford at The Nature Conservancy to discuss his take on China's changing attitudes towards conservation and the environmental dilemmas we currently face.
Ma is optimistic. He predicts China's environment will be better in the next 10 to 20 years, simply because people are starting to care. As Ma puts it, "10 or 20 years ago, China would never have been aware of this kind of problem. Back then, people were focused on how to survive. Now, people have better living conditions and they have big dreams for the future." He encourages Chinese business leaders to do their part, by remembering why they went into business to begin with: "to contribute to society and help customers."
Ma led by example when he removed shark fins from the Alibaba site, the first of many environmental causes to strike Ma. He pledges to use his platform to raise awareness about important environmental issues and invoke change. In addition to publically calling out negligent companies, Ma offers prizes for small and medium sized companies that are taking positive steps to better their communities. He's convinced that China's biggest impact on the environment as a whole will be taking care of China's environment at home first and foremost. To summarize Ma, "Positive thinking is key: The future is always beautiful." LEARN MORE