Say Goodbye to Greenwashing: How the EU Green Claims Directive is Promoting Environmental Transparency
by George Kiernan
Pakire Polymers News
EU Green Claims Directive
The Changing Markets Foundation (CMF) has hailed the forthcoming EU green claims directive as the end of the era of greenwashing. The directive, which is expected to be published this month, will require companies to substantiate their green claims using primary data that is company-specific. The CMF released a timeline of what it called “rampant” greenwashing, which included examples from the plastics and fashion sectors over the past two years. The timeline shows that the crackdown on greenwashing has well and truly begun.
The CMF’s campaign manager, George Harding-Rolls, said that the days of unfettered greenwashing are drawing to a close. “Green claims we encounter every day will now need to be much more robust to pass the test,” he said. “In particular, the fashion industry’s notoriously patchy and inaccurate data will come under fire.”
The EU green claims directive will require stringent verification of any environmental-based marketing, including for packaging. The CMF argues that the new rules will restrict claims being made for a whole product that only apply to a small part. The proposal highlights the potential for the Product Environmental Footprint tool to be the standard for substantiating claims in many categories, including textiles and packaging.
Fashion and Recycling
The foundation’s research found that 85% of brands relied entirely on plastic bottles for recycled polyester. Harding-Rolls called using plastic bottles for fashion a “one-way ticket to landfill” and called for a ban under the new rules. He suggested that fashion brands and retailers should invest in fibre-to-fibre recycling for their own waste instead of poaching recyclable material from the beverage industry.
The timeline released by the CMF includes examples of greenwashing across the plastics and fashion sectors over the past two years. It begins with the UK and Netherlands’ joint review of website content in January 2021, which found that 40% of green claims made online could be misleading to consumers. France introduced one of the world’s first greenwashing laws in the following April, with the EU Textiles Strategy promising its own clampdown in March 2022.
The CMF argues that the new EU rules will require packaging companies to use much more robust methodologies when making environmental claims. This will include the use of primary data that is specific to the company making the claim. The rules will also restrict claims being made for a whole product that only apply to a small part.
As a European plastic recycling company, Pakire Polymers welcomes the EU green claims directive and supports the CMF’s efforts to crack down on greenwashing. We believe that this new directive will benefit the environment and society as a whole by ensuring that companies are held accountable for their environmental claims.
We are committed to promoting the circular economy and reducing waste by recycling plastic materials into high-quality products. We believe that this is an important step towards a more sustainable future, and we are proud to be part of the solution.
Pakire Polymers supports the use of company-specific, primary data to substantiate green claims and the requirement for stringent verification of any environmental-based marketing. We believe that these measures will push companies into actually transitioning towards more sustainable business models, rather than just choosing favourable wording in their marketing to put forward a sustainable and environmentally friendly representation of themselves.
We applaud the CMF’s efforts to combat greenwashing and promote transparency in environmental claims. We look forward to working with our partners and customers to continue to drive positive change in the plastics industry, and to help build a more sustainable future for all.
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