Changing Horizons: FTC's Updated Green Guides Alter The Eco Marketing Landscape
In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, there’s been much talk about “reducing your carbon footprint” and “making sustainable choices,” as these and other such phrases have been whipping around the airwaves. Climate change and the role of people in exacerbating it, commentators say, can no longer be denied regardless of which side of the political fence your on. Bloomberg Businessweek even went so far to say, “It’s Global Warming, Stupid.”
Whether you want to believe it or not, the weather impacts the ability for business to get done. One look at PPAI’s Facebook page during the storm illustrated just how disruptive Sandy was to industry firms, as status update after status update included details on companies being closed. And that’s not to mention all the property damage and loss these folks experienced personally and professionally as a result.
Unfortunately, it appears that Mother Nature has more in store. Last month, Munich Re, a German reinsurance company, published Severe Weather in North America, a report that found the number of weather-related loss events have nearly quintupled in the last three decades—to a total of $1.06 trillion in losses caused by natural catastrophes. Now more than ever it’s imperative to be a good steward of the environment.
Most agree that being environmentally conscious is the right thing to do. But as a famous frog once said, “It’s not that easy being green.” There’s a lot of “eco” products on the market, but what does “green” really mean? Is it “post-consumer waste content?” Is it “sustainable?” Is it “recyclable?” Or simply “eco-friendly?”
“Green” and its associated vocabulary, according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), are manufacturer claims—claims that can be regulated under the FTC’s mandate to not only prevent fraudulent, deceptive and unfair business practices but to also provide information to help spot, stop and avoid them.