GMA Frets About 'Greenwashing'

Business just can't win.

For years the environmentalists and their green-loving mainstream media allies have been slamming businesses for trashing the planet. Outlets ranging from television networks to magazines to newspapers have spearheaded an incessant "eco-friendly" campaign that has been so influential on consumers that some companies have gone into the red just to be green. But of course now that being green has actually become profitable, the media's criticizing the free market for "taking advantage of it."

On Nov. 5 "Good Morning America's" weatherman and eco-propagandist Sam Champion tsked, "In the past five years, there's been an explosion of products marketed as being green or good for the environment. But just how accurate are all of those claims? And are we really getting what we think we are? Well, the government now says, in some cases, we're not."

You'd think "greenwashing," the topic of the segment, is what Champion's incessantly biased environmental "reporting" is meant to do to viewers. But no. Greenwashing is "labeling products as eco-friendly, when they may not be."

Lee Stringer, an environmental architect and author of the "groundbreaking" book "The Green Workplace," told Champion that greenwashing "infuriates" her:

When I find that they haven't done the work - they've just slapped a green label on something and haven't really shown me that they've done the due diligence - I find it very frustrating.

The problem (as if you couldn't see this coming) is the lack of government regulation. "None of these product claims are illegal," GMA's Elisabeth Leamy said ominously, "because there is no legal standard."

GMA turned then to Scott Chase of Terrachoice, a company that certifies green products for the Canadian government. Chase explained to Leamy the "confusing" green certifications that companies can award themselves

"What's the point?" said Chase. "What does it mean? Who determined it was earth-friendly? You gotta give me, as a consumer, additional information so I can make an intelligent choice."

But contrary to Learny's assertion, there is a legal standard. It's called "truth in advertising," and the segment ironically included an interview with Jim Kohm of the Federal Trade Commission. Kohm listed seven recent class action lawsuits that the FTC has brought against companies that have falsely advertised green products.

"The reason the FTC is on the beat," said Kohm, "is that we want to make sure that consumers get what they're paying for."

Wouldn't that make further legal standards unnecessary? No, because nothing is ever good enough for the environmental left.

For example, the ever-so-hated plastic water bottle. The company Poland Spring has a bottle design that saves 30 percent more plastic. But, as Chase pointed out, "You still have this kind of sin of the hidden trade-off, given that you're shipping this product back and forth across the country, when you could, in fact, just get it out of your tap." Never mind that you can't carry your tap with you.

So now with the environmentalists and the media shooting down the same products they demanded, what's left? Well, Leamy concluded, "Sometimes the best way to be green is not to buy anything at all." So much for the economy.