Submitted: The Two Sides Team March 21, 2013
While there are two sides to every story, I am happy to share this important information with you. You can now determine if you feel you have been green-washed, and how you can live your own version of a green and sustainable lifestyle.
March 16, 2013
by Barbara Zak
While there are two sides to every story, I am happy to share this
important information with you. You can now determine if you feel you
have been green-washed, and how you can live your own version of a
green and sustainable lifestyle.
Non-Profit initiates next stage of Its mission to stop green-washing.
Two Sides urges leading U.S. companies to end misleading claims about print and paper.
“Two Sides today
announced the next stage of its nationwide initiative to urge major U.S.
banks, utilities and telecommunication companies to end the use of
misleading marketing claims about the sustainability of print and paper.
Phase Two will include a second round of communication intended to
initiate productive discussion with CEOs and senior management in the
target industries, reminding them of their responsibility to adhere to
best practices for environmental marketing as outlined in the U.S.
Federal Trade Commissions recently revised Green Guides.” – Via MarketWire
Two Sides has no desire to cause unnecessary negative publicity for
these companies or to undermine their cost-saving and efficiency reasons
for driving customers towards e-billing, but claims that print and
paper are environmentally unfriendly need to stop, says Two Sides
President Phil Riebel. Rather than call these respected companies out
publicly with greenwashing complaints to the FTC, wed much prefer to
amicably work with them behind the scenes to help develop messaging that
meets the Green Guides standards for environmental marketing, he says.
However, were prepared to use the strongest means necessary to put an
end to the use of unsupported environmental claims that are potentially
damaging to the paper, printing and mailing sectors which support
millions of U.S. jobs.
Two Sides conducted a similar campaign to get companies in the United
Kingdom to drop or revise unsupported environmental claims about
printed media with great success. More than 80 percent of the U.K.
companies approached including well-known names like British Telecom,
Barclaycard, Vodafone and EON Energy worked with Two Sides to
eliminate misleading or factually incorrect environmental claims about
the use of print and paper.
The fact is, print and paper products made in the U.S. have a great
environmental story to tell, Riebel says. Paper comes from a renewable
resource trees grown in responsibly managed forests and its
recycled more than any other commodity, including plastics, metals and
glass. The continuing demand for sustainably sourced paper gives U.S.
landowners a financial incentive to continue managing their lands
responsibly and keep them forested rather than selling them for
development,which is the number one cause of deforestation in the United
States. Thanks in great part to the sustainable forestry practices
advanced by the paper and forest products industry, the volume of
growing trees in U.S. forests has increased nearly 50 percent over the
last half century and the total acres of forestland has remained
essentially unchanged for 100 years.
The direct impact of electronic products and services replacing paper
is far from negligible, and the trade-offs between the two depends on
how often we use the different technologies and how we dispose of the
products. Both electronic and print media are important, and both have
environmental impacts that must be taken into consideration.
Electronic communication has a significant and growing carbon
footprint due to the energy requirements of a vast worldwide network of
servers necessary to store information for immediate access. Electronic
communication also relies on significant amounts of fossil-fuel energy
and non-renewable raw materials for processing and manufacturing. With
electronic waste becoming the fastest growing waste stream in the world
and related environmental and health concerns escalating rapidly in many
countries, promoting going paperless as the best environmental choice
Its also important to note that equating electronic billing and
statements with going paperless is misleading. When traditional bills
and statements are converted to electronic communication, much of that
paper is replaced by home or office printing by those who prefer or
require a permanent hard copy. Furthermore, a recent study by NACHA, the
Electronic Payments Association, showed that up to 40 percent of
consumers receive both electronic and paper statements.
Some of the major U.S. companies in the financial, telecom and
utility sectors are to be commended for implementing sustainability
initiatives that focus on true performance measurement and factual
environmental claims, but others are lagging behind in terms of credible
messaging, Riebel says. Two Sides is committed to help change this,
and our experience to date shows that weve been successful in finding
mutually acceptable solutions.
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