Greenwash & Public Relations

NEW YORK -- CorpWatch warned today that the newly formed Business Action for Sustainable Development (BASD), an industry grouping organized to influence the Earth Summit in 2002 will be scrutinized and monitored by NGOs concerned with excessive corporate influence at the UN.
A $50 billion plan by a Hong Kong based developer to cut a canal through Nicaragua to allow ocean going cargo ships cross back and forth from the Atlantic to the Pacific ocean has suffered major setbacks after fierce opposition by environmentalists and local communities.
Since Aventis signed on to the Global Compact in July 2000, their genetically engineered StarLinkTM corn has illegally contaminated the food supply and seed stock. A look at the company's behavior regarding StarLink shows that before, during and after signing the Compact, Aventis violated Global Compact's Principle 7, which is drawn from the Rio Declaration and supports ''a precautionary approach to environmental challenges.''
In the months following the discovery and expose of Unilever's polluting practices in Kodaikanal, many of the responses and statements by the company have been contrary to facts. The time line below outlines a few. (Emphasis is the author's.)
Hedge fund billionaire George Soros is making a killing buying and selling farmland in South America after converting them to biofuel production. While this has caused the land prices to increase dramatically, the ecological impact is questionable.
Let's give credit where credit is due: When it comes to greenwash, Shell is simply superb.
The former chief executive officer of ABB, Goran Lindahl, will not be allowed to continue his prestigious post as special advisor to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan. Lindahl was pressured to resign after a pension scandal at ABB.
Starbucks, the world's largest coffee shop chain, and the Ethiopian government are on the verge of unveiling a deal that the company hopes will end attacks on the company's carefully constructed ethical image.
An international coalition of public-health professionals and activists has asked the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) to stop "lending its good name and endorsement to McDonald's" and cancel its participation with the fast-food giant in 'World Children's Day' on November 20.