Yesterday, Wal-Mart CEO gave a fairly amazing speech, assessing the company’s progress on its social and environmental goals and laying out some extremely ambitious plans for the future. A taste:

He then laid out sweeping plans for the company on several health and environmental issues, and he hinted that even more ambitious goals might be on the horizon. Mr. Scott said, for instance, that Wal-Mart is talking to leaders of the automobile industry about selling electric or hybrid cars — and might even install windmills in its parking lots so customers could recharge their cars with renewable electricity.

If Scott follows through on this stuff, and Wal-Mart forces its suppliers to go along, it will be an enormous development, probably rivaling what most national governments are capable of.

Here’s an NYT story on the speech; here’s the speech itself; here are videos of the speech. A couple of interesting sections below the fold: