Greenwash & Public Relations

Marc Kasky, a self-described environmentalist, viewed the Ernst and Young audit as an opportunity. Enlisting the support of San Francisco attorney Alan Caplan, he filed a suit against Nike in April of 1998. The suit claims that Nike's assertions about the labor conditions in its Asia factories amounted to false advertising.
Today CorpWatch is releasing the sixth in a series of articles written by members of the Alliance for a Corporate-Free UN documenting violations of UN Global Compact Principles by the very companies that have signed onto the controversial UN Compact.
Toyota is expected to announce a billion dollar settlement with the U.S. government for failing to disclose complaints by drivers that its cars were accelerating unintentionally. News of the negotiations were reported by the Wall Street Journal.
An angry mob gathered around a train station, passing out photocopied flyers and shouting protests against an unjust company. Scrappy stickers were slapped on billboards, directing passers-by to a crudely designed website. The company they were railing against was a frequent target of grassroots activism: Nike. And the group running this guerilla-style anti-advertising campaign? None other than Nike itself.
CorpWatch releases a new report called ''Greenwash + 10 -- The UN's Global Compact, Corporate Accountability and the Johannesburg Earth Summit.'' The report documents corporate influence on the United Nations and calls on the UN to implement measures for accountability.
Is Walmart going green? Mike Duke, the company's CEO, says in a new 126 page report that the company is becoming more sustainable and responsible while "building meaningful, long-term change." Activists disagree. Walmart's "environmental impact has only grown over the last seven years" they say in a counter-report.
Multinational industries like tobacco and alcohol have responded to increased global public pressure for accountability around corporate operations by creating Voluntary Codes of Conduct to self-regulate their behavior. But how are the results measuring up?
Big business, whose lust for profit is seen as anathema to sustainable development, must contribute to next month's global summit on poverty and the environment, the man leading corporate interests there said.
Unicef and McDonald's have agreed ''to team up to raise money on behalf of the world's children.'' This perilous partnership is to be launched on November 20, 2002 -- a day that used to be known in Unicef circles as the anniversary of the 1989 adoption of United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. Unicef now calls November 20th ''McDonald's World Children's Day.''
Premiere showing of Fenceline, an awarding winning PBS documentary about the Cancer Alley community struggle may be viewed in San Francisco on July 11, 2002. There will also be an update on the World Summit on the Environment.