Beware, friends. The most banal products are engaged in a strange kind of sabotage. Here is an item I spotted in our office today:
The package says: "Nature’s Own / Green Label / Paper Plates." Then it says "Made from 100% Paper; A Renewable Natural Resource."
It’s really quite something, when you think about it. It doesn’t say "recycled," so chances are these plates contain no recycled content. Nor does it say "manufactured using a process that produces no dioxins and no air pollutants such as sulfur dioxide (which causes acid rain), ammonia, carbon monoxide, mercury or benzene." So I’m guessing that the production of these plates did, in fact, contribute pollutants like these. All of which is kind of a funny thing to give a moniker like "Nature’s Own / Green Label."
The best part, though, is the claim that paper itself is a renewable natural resource. No it isn’t. Trees are a renewable natural resource. They are a lot of other things too—bird habitat, scenery, carbon sinks, organic matter that builds soil when they die, and erosion control. It takes people to turn that resource into a product and then put a plastic wrapper on it and then print lies all over the wrapper.
Don’t be a patsy for the word "green," folks. I know you know that.
What examples of greenwashing have you spotted lately?