It wants to switch consumers' attention from the company for being solely a tobacco and alcohol company and show that it has serious environmental concerns so it pursues actions friendly to human beings. It would have been useless if these concerns were only part of a public relations plan and were not implemented in reality.
People, nowadays, have become more environmentally conscious so it is in the best interest of a company to show that it respects the environment and it does not challenge the various environmental groups. Altria has to show that it wants to protect people's health and the best way to show it is by respecting the environment.
No, the commitment will not offset the environmental issues with the tobacco company, at least not in the short - run. Each decision of the company made public will have an impact on its various stakeholders. So, a public relations campaign as this one will not bring the desired results if the rest of company decisions and strategy show the opposite. Even if the company decisions are in accordance with the environmental issues, still a negative perception of the image requires a lot of time in order to be changed into a positive one.
Altria needs to be sincere with its customers and although it implements its environmental actions it needs to adapt its strategy as a company and become really concerned for consumer's health so this requires a strategic change from the tobacco business and diversify its product portfolio accordingly.
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