Free Ride for Greenwashers

Speaking at a conference on greenwashing, the campaign director at Corporate Ethics International, Kenny Bruno, criticized the Sierra Club for its deal with the chemical company, Clorox. "How do we trust Sierra Club if they're getting money?" he asked. Leonard L. Gordon, director of the Northwest regional office of the Federal Trade Commission, told the conference that, while they occasionally intervene if advertisements make clearly false environmental claims, they don't challenge those that are less flagrant. Christine MacDonald, a former employee of Conservation International wrote in her 2008 book "Green Inc.: An Environmental Insider Reveals How a Good Cause Has Gone Bad" that "partnerships" with environmental groups give companies "easy ways to appear green without making significant changes." As a result, these partnerships are "slowing down the corporate awakening to environmental and social responsibilities."