The global push to reduce atmospheric carbon is being compromised by confusing terminology and misleading claims, argues Dezeen founder and editor-in-chief Marcus Fairs.
Carbon washing is the new greenwashing. Growing alarm about climate change has triggered a rise in the number of companies making questionable claims that they are addressing the issue.
Phrases such as “climate neutral”, “carbon negative”, “net-zero” and “offsetting” are casually bandied around, replacing terms such as “biodegradable”, “compostable”, “circular” and “ocean plastic”, which were the hot bullshit buzzwords a couple of years ago.
Today, many companies appear to have switched bandwagons, swapping their plastic angst for climate concern. The new carbon jargon is designed to give the impression that new buildings and products make no contribution to atmospheric carbon, or even help reduce it.
Companies are simply taking advantage of vague and often meaningless terminology
The claims rarely stand up to scrutiny. Most often, companies are … Read more