Put a Green Smiley Face on It - or Not: The Perils of Greenwashing

Primary tabs

Put a Green Smiley Face on It - or Not: The Perils of Greenwashing

Blog by Julie Urlaub, Founder and Managing Partner at Taiga Company
tweet me:
Put a #Green Smiley Face on It - or Not: The Perils of Greenwashing http://3bl.me/wsf777 by @TaigaCompany #sustainability #ecomonday
Monday, August 22, 2011 - 11:17am

CONTENT: Blog

Greenwashing is the practice of making an unsubstantiated or misleading claim about the environmental benefits of a product, service, technology or company practice.  The term greenwashing is believed to have been coined in 1986 when environmentalist Jay Westerveld observed the practice of hotels encouraging guests to reuse bath towels as an effort to help the environment when in fact it simply saved massive amounts of money on laundry costs.
 
Companies and individuals moving too quickly to offer unsubstantiated green products and services could be leveraging future business for the short-term benefits.  Those engaging in greenwahing could be exposing themselves to potential longer-term risks
 
As consumers increasingly scrutinize business actions on climate change, they want to see transparent, more credible information on what companies are doing to reduce their environmental impact. Labeling a product or service with "eco awareness" just doesn't cut it.  Research shows that 70% of consumers do not feel confident that they can clearly identify which companies are environmentally responsible. Six in ten consumers (59%) are skeptical about the environmental claims companies make, and 44% of consumers would like more information on what companies are actually doing to be environmentally responsible.  
 
While a strong reputation is a critical component of every business, but it is especially important in driving consumer eco awareness of a specific product or service.  To build business and product reputation, a company should be able to demonstrate what they say they value.  In this light, a recent lesson learned by many organizations is the over-statement of company sustainability intentions and actions.  Our professional consulting believes a “keep it simple” approach can prove to be the most effective.   Click here to read more about communicating sustainability effectively
 

Home to one third of the earth's trees, the Taiga is the largest land-based biosphere and encircles the globe. Its immense oxygen production literally changes the atmosphere and refreshes the planet. It is this continuous renewal that has shaped Taiga Company's vision to drive similar change in the business world. Taiga Company seeks to be the "oxygen for your business".

Contact

Taiga Company
http://www.TaigaCompany.com
Keywords: Business & Trade | Business Sustainability | Consumers | Taiga Company | communications | greenwashing | stakeholders

CONTENT: Blog