More Data to Bust the Greenwashing Myth

  • Myth: Electronic communication is more environmentally friendly than paper-based communication.
  • Fact: Tons of e-waste are generated globally each year, and only a small percentage is collected and reused.

As more consumers adopted digital devices over the last decades, many brands loved the ease with which they could communicate sans paper. So they started asking their customers to “go green” and choose digital bills and communications instead of paper.

Yet the “go green” debate is not black and white, as Two Sides NA explains.

They point to more research that brings to light the environmental impact of our increasingly digital lifestyle, while also pointing out the sustainability of paper. And apparently, the message is getting through.

“A study by Two Sides found that half the leading Fortune 500 telecommunications companies, banks and utilities were making unsubstantiated claims about the environmental benefits of electronic billing,” the article notes. “In response, Two Sides initiated a campaign to educate senior executives on the sustainability of print and paper and to encourage them to abandon misleading environmental claims. To date, 100 North American companies, and over 275 globally have removed or changed inaccurate anti-paper claims.”

We are pleased to see the myths being replaced by facts around this hot button issue and continue to urge companies to be open and transparent about consumer choice. An easy way to do this is to download and distribute Two Side NA’s booklet on the myths and facts of the issue.

Consumers should have a say in how they receive communications, but they should never be greenwashed into believing digital will help the environment. It won’t. That facts of the matter just don’t bear that out.