Thinking Green

How to Avoid Greenwashing

By: Danny Lipford

Greenwashing is the attempt by companies to make their product or business practices seem more environmentally friendly than they really are. To avoid greenwashing when buying energy efficient or eco-friendly products, be sure to research the product and the company that makes it to see they’re really green.

Websites such as Rate It Green and The Green Guide can help by providing reviews and other information about products that are billed as green.

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The first written dictionary was found in ancient Syria dating back to around 2300 B.C. Since then, a lot more words have been added and, every year we add more. One of the newest words is a direct result of the green movement, but it’s not a very good one. It’s called “greenwashing,” and, unfortunately, it’s becoming a habit of some unethical manufacturers.

Basically, it means a company tries to pass themselves or a product off as green in order to cover up other un-green practices. And, if one company gets away with it, more will follow suit. Aside from being misleading, it can damage consumer confidence in the products that really are green.

Consumer watchdogs, like Rate It Green and The Green Guide are good sources to turn to when you have questions or doubts. So if you want to really think green, make sure it’s green all the way through and not just greenwashed.



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