One more step to end greenwashing: the new Sustainable Consumption Law is underway

End false green claims, protect consumers and promote more sustainable and honest consumer practices. These are the main objectives of the new Sustainable Consumption Law launched by the Ministry of Social Rights, Consumption and Agenda 2030.

This is a pioneering law in Spain focused exclusively on the sustainable consumption of products and services, both from the point of view of consumers and from production.

Specifically, the regulations propose to put an end to greenwashing , that is, environmental claims without scientific support and all deceptive communication techniques used by some companies to advertise their brands, products or services as sustainable when they really are not.

To do this, it advocates avoiding the use of generalities and opting for clear, simple and specific language that includes relevant and useful information . It also contemplates analyzing and/or contrasting environmental statements in certain cases to prevent claims that give the impression that a product has a positive impact on the environment without foundation or rigor.

On the other hand, it proposes creating a repairability index that allows consumers to recognize the real life of products and compare their characteristics to be able to make more informed purchasing decisions, in addition to extending the warranty of products to encourage repair instead of premature disposal of them.

“The word sustainable is increasingly overused, to the point that it has ended up losing much of its value and meaning. The Ministry’s intention is to take this concept seriously. With this initiative we want to raise awareness, mobilize and regulate the field of sustainable consumption, guaranteeing greater transparency and veracity of the information offered,” in the words of Minister Pablo Bustinduy , during an appearance in the Congress of Deputies.

Regarding this, the Ministry has also launched a Sustainable Communication Guide aimed at companies that includes examples, tools and advice on good and bad communication practices. Likewise, it warns that abusing generalities (expressions such as ‘eco-friendly’ or ‘green’) can be considered an unfair practice for violating consumer regulations and entailing financial penalties of up to 100,000 euros.

The Sustainable Consumption Law is currently in the process stage , after closing a prior public consultation in which citizens, companies and associations have contributed their opinions, proposals and comments to outline the future regulatory framework.

This new legislative proposal follows the line of the European directive for the prohibition of greenwashing approved by the European Parliament last January.

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