Greenwash (a portmanteau of green and whitewash) is a term that is used to describe the act of misleading consumers regarding the environmental practices of a company or the environmental benefits of a product or service,[1] or politicians similarly attempting to mislead citizens.

For example, attempts to portray use of fossil fuels as a clean energy source such as the term "clean coal" have been described as greenwash. [2] [3]

News USA, News Canada 2009 Edit

  • Greenwashing affects 98% of products, April 15 [4]

Comment Edit

Comment UK Edit


  • ‘Promises of a “Green Budget” must be backed up with action if they are to be anything more than greenwash. So far, the Government’s rhetoric has run well ahead of its record, with just 7% of the UK’s economic stimulus package categorised as “green”, little more than a fig leaf to hide the Government’s environmental modesty.’ CPRE, April 16 [5] A report by HSBC, published at the end of March 2009, ranked 17 countries according to the green element of their fiscal stimulus. South Korea came top, with 81%, and China set aside 34% for environmentally friendly projects. The USA allocated 12% of its stimulus package to such projects.


  • Government plans to off-set aviation emissions just "greenwash", say Greenpeace, November 8 [6] topic
  • Eco towns: greenwash or real solution? Using citizens’ juries is no substitute for consulting local communities on the need for, location and design of eco-towns through the established planning process, CPRE, October 30 [7] topic

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  1. - Definition of Greenwashing
  2. Time to bury the 'clean coal' myth,, Fred Pearce, October 30 2008
  3. Green groups accused of clean coal 'greenwash', Sydney Morning Herald, April 15, 2008
  4. TerraChoice, April 15, 2009
  5. Campaign to Protect Rural England, April 16, 2009
  6. Greenpeace, November 8
  7. Campaign to Protect Rural England, October 30

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