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It's Too Easy Being Green - What Does It Mean To Be Eco-Friendly

IT'S TOO EASY BEING GREEN With green marketing at an all-time high, there has been much contention as to what words like "natural," "environmentally WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE friendly," and "eco-friendly" really mean. Although there is still no ECO-FRIENDLY? single definition, we're going to attempt to discover what it signifies to be eco-friendly, and how it may be used as advertising bait. DEFINING ECO-FRIENDLY ECO-FRIENDLY (adj.) A term that refers to goods that are made with minimal environmental impact, or services and processes that follow guidelines meant to reduce the ecological footprint. THE SCIENCE OF ECO-LABELS THE PRODUCTION CYCLE IS OFTEN DIVIDED INTO THESE STAGES: *o Pre-Production Production Packaging & Distribution Use Disposal FOR EACH STAGE, THE FOLLOWING IMPACTS TO THE ENVIRONMENT ARE CONSIDERED: Consumption of Energy and Natural Resources Soil Pollution Air Water Waste Noise Contamination Contamination WHAT THE FTC HAS TO SAY Because of the frequency of false environmental marketing claims, the Federal Trade Commission released a guide on how to label products and services correctly without deceiving consumers. Here are some rules: BRANDS CANNOT: 100% 100% Recycled Material Ozone Friendly Degradable Say a product or package is made Label a product "ozone friendly" Use the term "degradable" of 100% recycled material, when it when some of the product's if the item isn't capable of also includes raw materials in ingredients are volatile organic decomposing in a landfill addition to used components. compounds (VOCS). within a year. Compostable Environmentally Safe Claim that their package is compostable Add "environmentally safe" if materials or packaging can't break to their label if the down into usable compost in a home manufacturer can't compost pile or device. substantiate the broad claim. CONSUMERS ARE GETTING TURNED OFF NOT 100% NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC RECYCLABLE A National Geographic survey asked, The majority of respondents replied: "WHAT DISCOURAGES MORE ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY CONSUMER BEHAVIOR?" "COMPANIES MAKE FALSE CLAIMS ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT OF THEIR PRODUCTS." WHAT PEOPLE CAN DO TO AVOID GREENWASHING Always read external labels and third party verification. Shop from trusted sources that are transparent with their green claims, and allow people to publicly Read online reviews from both consumers and experts. evaluate those claims. MOST RECOGNIZABLE ECO-LABELS FOR CONSUMERS Although there isn't any universal certification that measures how well a brand adheres to being green, the most reliable eco-labels are seals proving that an independent organization has verified that the product meets the standards for optimal protection of the environment. According to a Terrachoice survey, the following are the most recognized eco-labels that both US and Canadian consumers turn to when making purchasing decisions: SEAL USDA energ Ecologo ORGANIC FSC ENERGY STAR ECO-FRIENDLINESS RANKED AROUND THE WORLD In 2010, the National Geographic Society and GlobeScan conducted their third-annual survey, which ranked average consumers in 17 countries around the world according to the environmental impact their consumption patterns. COUNTRY GREENDEX SCORE Lower Score = Less eco-friendly Higher Score = More eco-friendly India I 62.6 Brazil 1 58 China 1 57.3 Mexico I 54.8 Argentina 1 54.2 Russia 1 54.2 Hungary 1 54.1 S. Korea 1 52.8 Sweden 1 50.7 Spain 1 50.4 Australia 1 50.3 Germany | 50 Japan 1 49.7 UK I 47.6 When it came to their eco-friendly habits, American consumers scored the lowest and were ranked as the least sustainable of all countries surveyed. France 1 48.9 Canada 1 47.9 US I 45 STILL MAKING PROGRESS According to a 2009 EcoMarkets summary report that surveyed organizations in both the US and Canada: ORGANIZATIONS ARE MORE ACTIVE IN GREEN PURCHASING More active in green purchasing 56% Less active in green purchasing 8% Neither more nor less active 36% Percent of respondents TOP FIVE FACTORS THAT MOTIVATE ORGANIZATIONS TO BUY GREEN Organization's Environmental Employees 5) Human Interest commitment to considerations health from senior 80% sustainability 35% management 78% 41% considerations 35% Percent of respondents WHAT COULD ENCOURAGE EVEN MORE PURCHASES IN GREEN INDUSTRY? More competitive pricing 75% Better education in green purchasing Better selection of products 61% 2$ 57% Government leadership 51% Better policy direction 47% Percent of respondents SOURCES: NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC | FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION | EUROPEAN UNION | GALLUP | TERRACHOICE | ECOLLABELLING.ORG | ECOMARKETS SUMMARY REPORT ethical Ocean Created By COLUMN FIVE "e-commerce with a conscience" GREEN

It's Too Easy Being Green - What Does It Mean To Be Eco-Friendly

shared by rmmojado on Dec 28
With green marketing at an all-time high, there has been much contention as to what words like “natural,” “environmentally,” and “eco-friendly” really mean. Although there is still no sing...



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