2008 Power List: 9. The Greenwashers

*David Jones, CEO, Euro RSCG (Age: 41)

Christopher Barger, Director of Global Communications Technology, GM

(Age: 40)

Matt Kistler, Senior Vice President of Sustainability, Wal-Mart (Age 42)*

Maybe you've heard? The planet is dying. No need to worry—ExxonMobil is on the case. Yes—praise the Lord—faster than you can say "Valdez," the company once described as "the earth's No. 1 global-warming villain" has embraced the environmental movement. As has General Motors. And even Wal-Mart. "We want greener products from greener companies—but there's plenty of green smoke," says Scot Case, vice president of the environmental marketing firm TerraChoice. "Car companies sell themselves as green if they have one or two models with good mileage. They can't become green overnight." Tell that to Christopher Barger, who created a chat site so that GM could communicate with consumers about projects like its electric car. One caveat: Ripping the Escalade and Hummer too strongly is verboten, as environmentalists learned when GM blocked their comments. Under Matt Kistler, Wal-Mart has seen sales of extended-life lightbulbs and paper products skyrocket, no doubt making the Walton family believers in the healing power of greenwashing. And why not? If the Valdez's hull breached today, David Jones—the ad exec behind ExxonMobil's "Taking on the World's Toughest Energy Challenges" spot—might tell us an 11-million-gallon spill was a giant step toward reducing carbon emissions.




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