News Release: The Day After Earth Day, Don’t Be Fooled by the Biggest Green Scams

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The Day After Earth Day: “Don’t Be Fooled” by The Biggest Green Scams

For Immediate Release | April 23, 2013

CONTACT: Jeff Gang, 617-747-4352,

Boston, MA—On Earth Day, it can seem like every company, product, and marketer is suddenly touting their eco-friendliness and green cred. It’s mostly hogwash – well, greenwash, to be specific. And it’s hard to tell the truly green from the green scams.

To help out, The Green Life Online released the annual “Don’t Be Fooled” report. The report lists the top 10 cases of green scams from the past year. The report isn’t done, though: this year, they’re asking the public to vote online to rank the worst greenwashers.

“Lots of companies are eager to jump on the Earth Day bandwagon,” said Jeff Gang, coordinator of The Green Life Online. “But consumers are skeptical. We want to see substantive changes in environmental practices, not just greenwash ad campaigns.”

The Green Life Online is calling for marketers to stop making misleading claims, and urges consumers to vote on the top scams, and report new greenwash scams through their online tool.

“It’s not just dishonest to greenwash your products,” says Gang. “It undermines products and companies that truly care about the planet. And it has to stop.”

“Earth Day is over. But our task is year-round: together, we can change our lives for the greener. Especially if green scams stop getting in the way,” he said.

Here, in alphabetical order, are the top green scams of the past year:

Amazon: Despite FTC action ordering them to stop, Amazon continued selling rayon sheets labeled as “100% bamboo.”

Apple advertises the new Retina Macbook Pro laptop as “the world’s greenest,” but experts say it’s the “least repairable, least recyclable” computer in a decade.

Audubon International: certifier of golf courses under dubious standards, using the well-known name and bird logo, despite no affiliation with the Audubon Society

Canadian Tar Sands: the Canadian government spent millions to run ads calling tar sands oil extraction “responsible,” while undermining environmental protections.

Kashi: Their cereal stretches the meaning of “all natural” with genetically-engineered ingredients.

McDonald’s & Marine Stewardship Council: a partnership to sell “sustainable” fish sandwiches, despite a murky record for protecting fish and wildlife

Organix: A hair-care brand. Most of their products aren’t organic.

SherwinWilliams: their Dutch Boy Refresh paint claimed to be “zero-VOC” – but most colors actually contained dangerous VOCs.

Sustainable Forestry Initiative: an industry-dominated group that greenwashes paper and wood

Two Sides: A paper industry group that pressures banks and utilities to stop offering paperless billing


Founded after Earth Day 1990, The Green Life Online is a non-profit organization that helps environmentally-aware and health-conscious citizens make effective decisions about the way they consume and the companies they support.

Vote for the worst green scam, and submit your own:

One thought on “News Release: The Day After Earth Day, Don’t Be Fooled by the Biggest Green Scams

  1. Pingback: Don’t Be Fooled by Green Scams: the 2013 Report « The Green Life Online

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