Green-Wash

Posted on 20th July, 2009

Skimming through a few building products magazines which I recently received, I was staggered to see the number of product manufacturers now claiming green credentials. It occurred to me that it might be a good idea to start a competition to see who could spot the highest number of such claims in any particular publication but then realised that this would be too easy – one could just count the number of press releases. About 90% or so of these would invariably refer to improvements in the manufacturing process or the product itself. This drive to identify environmental problems and fix them is encouraging, but it often appears that many of these improvements are not driven purely by a desire to reduce environmental impact. Cost saving exercises or a simple desire to make a product appeal to an increasingly environmental-conscious public often appears to be the real reason behind the eye-catching headlines. The problem is widespread through all industries of course, not just construction - but it pays to read between the lines to see exactly what you are getting foy your money.

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