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Today, the FTC is releasing proposed changes to its Green Guides.  For years, the Green Guides have offered practical steps businesses can take to make sure that claims for a product’s environmental qualities aren’t misleading.

Our Green Guides have been under review for the last few years in an effort to make sure that they are appropriate for a changing marketplace. As part of the review process, the agency sought comments from the public, hosted public workshops, and conducted its own consumer perception study.  The changes the Commission is proposing include guidance on:

  • how to feature environmental certifications for products and services without misleading consumers;
  • how to make truthful and substantiated degradable, recyclable, compostable, and free-of claims; 
  • how not to make general environmental benefit claims, such as “green” and “eco-friendly,” without clearly and prominently limiting the claim to a specific benefit; and
  • how to deal with newer claims like renewable materials, renewable energy, and carbon offsets.

Today’s release is how the agency solicits feedback on the proposed changes – in short, how it tries to get the best thinking on green marketing from inside the Beltway and beyond.

The deadline for filing comments is December 10, 2010. File them here. We look forward to hearing from you.

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