Environment & Biodiversity

‘Greenwashing’ raises red flags at COP27

Private companies were forewarned by the UN Secretary-General to stop using greenwashing techniques and change their ways within a year.


  • It can give the misleading impression that a business or its products are environmentally aware or friendly.
  • It is an attempt to profit from the rising demand for environmentally sound items.
  • The phrase first appeared in the 1960s when one of the most overt instances of greenwashing was created by the hotel sector.
  • Some businesses have been charged with greenwashing in an effort to profit from the environmental, social, and governance (ESG) investing movement.
  • It gives a false picture of the progress being made on the climate change front, so pushing the globe towards disaster and rewarding entities for irresponsible behaviour.
  • Genuinely green products or businesses support their statements with facts and specifics.


  • A new shower curtain is packaged in plastic and is marked ‘Biodegradable’.
  • It’s unclear whether the shower curtain or the package can be recycled.
  • If any portion of the packaging or its contents, except from minor components, cannot be recycled, the label is false in either scenario.
  • ‘50% more recycled content than previously’ is written on a room rug.
  • In actuality, the manufacturer upped the recycled content from 2% to 3%. Despite being technically accurate, the message gives the impression that the rug contains a lot of recycled fibre.

Offsets & Credits

  • Trading carbon is a legal activity. In reality, it is endorsed by the government.
  • Carbon credits are given to nations or businesses that cut emissions above their quota; these credits can then be purchased for money by organizations who require them to meet their objectives.
  • A carbon market already existed under the Kyoto Protocol, and one is being established under the Paris Agreement.
  • Since they were first conceived, carbon markets’ reach has multiplied. There are also unregulated carbon markets.
  • Such transactions, particularly in informal, bilateral or voluntary marketplaces, have been identified for lack of integrity and duplicate counting. The credits are frequently certified by unofficial third-party firms and sold to others.
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