EU confirms penalties for greenwashing!
“The European Commission tabled new legislation on Wednesday (22 March) to tackle misleading environmental claims by introducing penalties against greenwashing and tighter rules for the approval of new ecolabels.
The proposed Green Claims Directive aims to reduce greenwashing and enable consumers to make informed purchasing decisions based on reliable information about the sustainability of the products they buy.
“We believe this proposal will bring real change and will empower all people who truly want to choose products based on their reduced impact on our planet,” said Environment Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevičius, who presented the proposal.
Offending companies will be subject to penalties ranging from fines to confiscation of revenues, and temporary exclusion from public procurement processes and public funding.
Penalties will be enforced by national authorities, which have to regularly control green claims, publicly disclose their findings, and fine companies who mislead consumers.
The move was applauded by consumer group BEUC, which praised the Commission for “raising their game to fight greenwashing” and “putting an end to the wild west of unsubstantiated green claims.”
Yet, the EU’s future green claims law will only be as good as its enforcement, BEUC warned, saying national authorities “will have to heavily fine companies to clean up the market from misleading green claims and labels once and for all.”
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