Two Sides achieves 810 corporate greenwash wins

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Print and paper environmental lobby group Two Sides has successfully challenged 810 global organisations that have subjected their customers to repeated greenwashing messages.

 The Two Sides global Anti-Greenwash Campaign says anti-paper statements by corporates are misleading, and damaging to the paper, print and mailing industry. It says that recent research found that in Australia and New Zealand alone, greenwashing threatens the loss of $8.27bn of value annually to the paper, print and mailing industry.

The 810 corporates have now removed the misleading greenwashing statement from their websites. Two Sides is pressuring the remainder of the 1690 organisations it says are still greenwashing.

Two Sides says with pressures on the economy the banks, telecom providers, utility companies and even governmental organisations are increasingly focused on switching their customers from paper to digital services to cut costs and says, “All too often their customer communications attempt to mask these cost-saving efforts, justifying the switch with unfounded environmental marketing appeals such as Go Green – Go Paperless, and Choose e-billing and help save a tree.” 

TRMC CEO: Kellie Northwood
Improving eco record: Kellie Northwood

Two Sides executive Kellie Northwood said, “Not only are these greenwash claims in breach of established environmental marketing rules, but they are hugely damaging to an industry which has a solid and continually improving environmental record.

“Far from ‘saving trees,’ a healthy market for forest products such as paper encourages the long-term growth of forests through sustainable forest management. Many of the organisations we engage are surprised to learn that Australia alone has two million hectares of working tree farms and this is growing, and that New Zealand’s total planted tree farms’ standing volume is estimated to be 519 million cubic metres with an average forest standing age of 17.38 years.”

Globally, Two Sides has engaged 1,690 in Australia and New Zealand, and throughout Europe, North and South America, and South Africa.

“It remains vital that greenwash is challenged to ensure that the industry’s great environmental record is recognised and that the livelihoods of thousands of industry employees, as well as print, paper and postage volumes, are not damaged by the spread of misleading and opportunistic greenwash marketing,” Northwood says.

Two Sides says that because of the huge reach of some of these greenwashing organisations, their unsubstantiated claims have a damaging effect on consumer perceptions of paper and threaten a sector that employs ~301,000 people in 8,519 businesses across Australia and New Zealand.

“We are grateful for the cooperation of the hundreds of organisations that have changed or eliminated greenwashing claims from their messaging, and we are also thankful for the many industry stakeholders and members of the public who send Two Sides examples of greenwash,” Northwood concludes.

Two Sides continues to actively challenge major organisations found to be misleading consumers by using environmental claims about the use of paper.

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