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Harvard Business Review on Greening Your Business Profitably by Harvard Business Review

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The Greening of Petrobras

by José Sergio Gabrielli de Azevedo

HOW CAN PETROBRAS, A huge multinational whose main expertise is offshore drilling, evangelize about protecting the environment? I know it might seem preposterous—particularly since Petrobras was making headlines not too long ago for a string of environmental disasters.

In January 2000, a leak in a corroded pipeline spilled 350,000 gallons of crude oil into Guanabara Bay, a tourist destination, fishing community, and wildlife habitat near Rio de Janeiro, which had already suffered a Petrobras spill in 1997. Because the pipe didn’t have modern sensors, oil poured out for two hours before the leak was detected. We were fined more than $25 million. Environmental groups were furious. Local ...

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