Green Scene: Earth Day’s Worst Corporate Offenders


The worst greenwasher last week was Earth Day herself. It’s tough to say who got more media play on her international holiday – naughty corporate sponsors or the bloggers who outed them.

Spin Cycle

Rainforest Action Network’s Greenwash of the Week video featured a laundry list of major Earth Day sponsors who are among the worst eco-offenders on the planet. From Cargill, the huge agribusiness concern that is wiping out the Indonesian rainforest to produce palm oil, to Chevron, one of the biggest polluters in California.

Run for Your Life

Wall Street Cheat Sheet gave its award for the most obscene Earth Day greenwash to Dow Chemical Company, nuclear plutonium polluters and sole suppliers of napalm during the Vietnam war. Dow was the platinum sponsor of Live Earth’s “Run for Water” event at 193 locations in 45 countries. Fortunately, the irony wasn’t lost on Brooklyn event protesters, who dressed as grim reapers while others faked keeling over dead.

Watered Down

Topping Inhabitat‘s “Top Five Dumbest Greenwashed “˜Earth Day’ Gimmicks” list were the new Poland Springs “eco-shaped water bottles,” which claim to use an average of 30 percent less plastic than other water bottles the same size. That means Poland Springs uses three and a half liters of water – rather than five – just to make one half-liter plastic bottle. So it’s only 70 percent evil?

Click and Cry

On Earth Day, beautiful scenes of green fields, wind generators and rainbows were projected onto the walls of the Old City in Jerusalem, while Israeli tanks and bulldozers destroyed a Palestinian family’s fields of wheat, rye and lentils for no apparent reason. [via Media Monitors Network]

Editor’s note: This is the latest installment in Liz Barrett’s news column, Green Scene, covering what’s fascinating in green weekly.

Image: Stella Blu