The EU’s fight against greenwashing

There are enough advertisements praising the supposed environmental sustainability of products without scientific evidence to prove them. In other words, forget about greenwashing, a word that we can translate as “frontline environmentalism” and refers to a set of practices that various companies and economic operators implement (maliciously) to hide the true environmental impact of their products and products. activities, misleading consumers and customers. This is what the new law, definitively approved by the European Parliament in Strasbourg, provides.

The directive aims to regulate misleading commercial practices by banning overly general environmental claims (e.g. words such as “organic”, “ecological”, “natural” and similar words) and to make the labeling of products offered for sale clearer and more reliable. adequate tests or certifications.

In particular, the law regulates the use of so-called sustainability marks on a wide range of products and services offered to consumers: it will no longer be possible to display a sustainable product label if there is no sufficient “scientific” basis to justify this (either directly by public authorities or by independent third-party organizations designated by them will need to be verified), but it will no longer be possible for airlines, for example, to boast of selling “neutral” flights. CO2 emissions (because this is not possible).


A new harmonized label will then be introduced across all Member States, which must contain accurate information on the durability and repairability of products offered for sale in order to prevent premature obsolescence of various types of products that begin to deteriorate when the legal warranty expires. Expires 2 to 3 years from date of purchase. Regarding the repair, information on the availability of replacement components, procedures to be followed, and an estimate of repair costs should be shown.

Unfair business practices

Finally, Parliament requests the prohibition of other false or misleading commercial practices, such as the obligation to periodically update the software of digital devices or the imposition of using only components of digital devices, even if this is not actually necessary to improve the functionality of digital devices. Same brand of product purchased.

Providing a general framework, these rules will work in synergy with the rules contained in the directive on environmental claims currently being debated in a parliamentary committee, and will more specifically define the conditions that companies must comply with to use certain claims. environmental impacts of its products.

The other two fronts being worked on in Brussels are eco-design, i.e. a set of minimum standards for the sustainable production of products sold in the single market, and the right to repair, which has already been touched upon in today’s vote. Promote the circular economy and further reduce waste and waste.

Source: Today IT