DEFINITION of 'Green Tech'

The term green tech refers to: technology that is considered environmentally friendly based on its production process or supply chain; a means of energy production that is less harmful to the environment than more traditional ways of generating energy, such as burning fossil fuels.

Green technology is a relatively young marketplace but investor interest runs very high in response to global warming fears and the increasing scarcity of many natural resources.

BREAKING DOWN 'Green Tech'

Green tech may be a stated goal of a business segment within a large company, or the focused mission statement of a smaller startup firm. It can cover anything from recycled product packaging to longer-lasting light bulbs and alternative energy production.

Specialized investment funds known as "green funds" seek out publicly traded leaders in the green tech movement for their investment dollars. In addition, many socially conscious investors may choose to only invest in companies that are environmentally friendly or have pledged to become so.

Large companies like Starbucks and Whole Foods employ green technology practices alongside a variety of small startups.

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