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The Go Green Decision Tree

Posted 5 May 2008 by Jacob Malthouse to Opinion.

Here’s how you can easily make the best green choices in the shopping aisles of almost every retailer.

It’s simple, straightforward, and you know you’ve made your best effort to go green:

BEST CHOICE = Look for an independent “green” or “eco” labelExample:A. Ecologo Green Paper Towel;┬áBEST CHOICEB: Loblaw’s Green Paper Towel.

Note: Not sure about label? Investigate at

OK CHOICE = Green or eco words used on productExample: “natural, earth friendly, organic, green, eco-friendly, climate friendly”Risks: A good list of greenwashing examples from the LA Times.

EVERY BIT HELPS CHOICE = Recycled packaging

Be aware that the product inside won’t be green, but if there aren’t any better options then go for it, every little bit helps!

  • Single attributes as described above seem to me to have an increased likelihood of falling prey to those who are greenwashing. Multiple environmental attributes are better. Statistically more often than not marketers who offer single claims of being green are not really valid green claims. See ’07 TerraChoice Marketing Study.

  • Generally I would agree with this philosophy, however the other day I read a blog on Clorox and their new green line that is approved by the Sierra Club and other environmental organizations. Apparently Clorox consulted with them to help get in line with green values. When I initially saw my friend using a Clorox brand ‘green’ product I was skeptical. I guess it’s up to the consumer to research what they are buying.

    organic apparel

  • ruffstuff

    c’mon people…clorox going green? wake up…a marketing ploy to enlarge consumer base…….eg organic ketchup from heinz….you greenies don’t know how hard you’re takin it in the wallet!

  • Quite frankly the key to environmental living is to stop buying in to the consumer culture. Stop shopping save the earth! It’s just that simple… whether its clorox or Gucci it’s not environmentally sound. See ya in the mall!