Greenwashing should be illegal


The Greens welcome the ACCC’s announcement to investigate businesses for greenwashing, but are calling for Government and regulators to go further in enforcement of false environmental claims.

Greens spokesperson for the environment Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said:

“The pressure to properly regulate greenwashing both domestically and internationally is on, and I commend ACCC and ASIC for their movement in this space. But we need to go further.

“It should be illegal to lie about how green or carbon-friendly products and services are.

“The majority of Australians want to do the right thing by the environment and will be shocked by these findings. They expect that in choosing their products or services carefully they are in some small way making a positive choice for the environment, but this review shows that this is likely not the case.

“The fashion industry has been flagged as one with the highest proportion of concerning claims. Considering it is the second most polluting industry globally, responsible for up to 10 per cent of annual carbon emissions, a crackdown on green claims is urgent.

“The Albanese Government signed an international commitment to ensure businesses transparently disclose their environmental credentials, and that consumers are provided with accurate information. Greenwashing is out of control. Everyday Australians are being ripped off and misled. The Government must act urgently to implement rules that hold business to account to ensure truth of claims and public confidence in environmental action.

“I urge the industries subject to this review, along with the advertising industry, to work closely with the regulators to ensure Australian consumers can truly know what they are signing up for when they choose a product or service.”