Greenwashing – It’s Not a New Salad Spinner

What is “greenwashing”? It’s a word of fairly recent vintage, now O.E.D.- accepted. Which means it’s here to stay. It borrows from the term “whitewashing” as in cover up.

1green (environmentalist) + brainwashing
Date: 1989
: expressions of environmentalist concerns especially as a cover for products, policies, or activities

There are so many examples of greenwashing these days, it’s enough to make you green at the gills.

The new spate of television shows purporting to be “green” are a perfect example of greenwashing. Here’s a good overview.

Bite Me

Here’s another example I found particularly disturbing. I met a nice, earnest young guy in Monterey who is with the new IdealBite newsletter (think: “green Daily Candy”). I’ve been reading it each day and just when I was beginning feel it was just a sales wolf in green clothing, I read their blog admitting that none of their staff will do the simple task of putting a pitcher under the shower to save the water that’s wasted while the shower heats up.

Even I do that one! And they’re preaching the green gospel to all the readers – while they themselves are not taking their own advice – and while they sell us all the cool new “green” gear.

Remember: the “greenest” thing you can buy is nothing. The first R in the three R mantra is REDUCE, then RECYCLE, the RE-USE. It is meant to be a heirarchy.

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  1. Tales of the Cocktail may be over but the fun continues. Check the blogs and podcasts for all the news that fit to drink!
  2. The Maori art of facial tatooing is called moko. It is a powerful expression of tribal identity which has only recently enjoyed a resurgence as the colonial Christian prohibitions against it have lessened. Go to the Peabody Essex Museum for this rare opportunity to catch a glimpse of this amazing cultural tradition. The documentary I saw at Sundance years ago on moko, was one of the most powerful films I have ever seen.
  3. The Audubon Insectarium is a new and top-notch attraction in New Orleans. We passed by it and wondered why we'd missed it before. Turns out it's just now opening. No time this last trip, but it's on the list for the next time. Check here for info.

What's on my list?

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