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Beware of Greenwashing
The term is used to describe deceptive use of Green PR or Green Marketing in order to promote a misleading perception that a company's policies, products or services are environmentally friendly. The term green sheen has similarly been used to describe organizations that attempt to show that they are adopting practices beneficial to the environment.
Greenwashing may also be described as "SPIN". One example is presenting cost custs as reductions in use of resources.
The term greenwashing was coined by New York environmentalist Jay Westerveld in a 1986 essay regarding the hotel industry’s practice of placing placards in each room promoting reuse of towels ostensibly to "save the environment". Westerveld noted that, in most cases, little or no effort toward reducing energy waste was being made by these institutions — as evidenced by the lack of cost reduction this practice effected. Westerveld opined that the actual objective of this "green campaign" on the part of many hoteliers was, in fact, increased profit. Westerveld thus labeled this and other outwardly environmentally conscientious acts with a greater, underlying purpose of profit increase as greenwashing.
The term is generally used when significantly more money or time has been spent advertising being green (that is, operating with consideration for the environment), rather than spending resources on environmentally sound practices. This is often portrayed by changing the name or label of a product to evoke the natural environment or nature - for example, putting an image of a forest on a bottle containing harmful chemicals. Environmentalists often use greenwashing to describe the actions of energy companies, which are traditionally the largest polluters.
Norway’s Consumer Ombudsman has recently targeted automakers who claim that their cars are "green", "clean" or "environmentally friendly" with some of the world's strictest advertising guidelines. Consumer Ombudsman official Bente Øverli said: "Cars cannot do anything good for the environment except less damage than others." Manufacturers risk fines if they fail to drop the words. Øverli said she did not know of other countries going so far in cracking down on cars and the environment.
Source Wikepedia.orgEcobites Directory - Promoting Eco/Green lifestyles
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