Greenwashing Doesn't Pay

Greenwashing is a bad practice (I'm sure we all agree on that) that hurts the credibility of the industry, and the perpetrator, when it's discovered.

Compounding the sin is Bad Greenwashing, which not only distorts the truth, but insults the reader's intelligence, as well.

I recently read a manufacturer's trade association paper that notes 35% of the manufacturing plants in this field "have investigated alternative energy sources."  (It refers to an historically energy-intensive process, and the chief sustainability knock against the product in question is energy consumption and associated CO2 emissions in its production.)

Decoded: 65% haven't even looked at the possibility of alternative energy.  To make matters worse, the other 35% merely have investigated, with no indication that any of them have done a blessed thing about actually changing.  

The statement was intended to provide reassurance that the industry is improving on its thorniest environmental problem.  But if you think about their argument for two seconds, it's so weak that it becomes an embarrassment.  The facts are bad. The attempt to greenwash them actually highlights how bad they are, and damages the credibility of the entire paper.  (Pity, too, since the paper raises some other honest points about the sustainable performance of the product.)

Greenwashing, like crime, doesn't pay.