The FTC's proposed update of its "Green Guides," which haven't been revised since 1998, would dissuade companies from making general statements such as saying their products are "eco-friendly" or from using certain seals of approval without specifying the reason for the claims. The FTC is also looking to push company marketers using terms such as "degradable," "compostable" or "free of" a certain substance to better define what those terms mean.
U.S. regulators are looking to prevent companies from "greenwashing," or saying their products provide certain environmental benefits relative to the competition without proving the claim. About 9% of product advertisements in mainstream magazines have some sort of green message, The New York Times reported, citing Underwriter Laboratories' TerraChoice Group.
The 229-page document outlining the proposed revisions is available on the FTC's Website. The FTC set a Dec. 10 deadline for public comments.