Survey reveals UK adults’ low confidence in climate-related claims

Be a part of our rising military of changemakers and get limitless entry to our premium content material

A survey of two,000 adults within the UK has revealed that the majority really feel extra assured of their understanding of inexperienced claims referring to supplies and recycling than of their information of climate-related phrases.

The outcomes, printed this week by FleishmanHillard, reveal that seven in ten individuals really feel assured after they encounter merchandise and packaging that state ‘100% recyclable’ or ‘absolutely recyclable’.

The bulk additionally felt they understood claims like ‘makes use of a share of sustainable supplies’ or ‘made with much less plastic’.

However ranges of understanding had been combined when the survey respondents had been offered with frequent climate-related on-pack claims.

Solely 28% mentioned they’d be assured understanding a carbon depth label, like ‘this product produces X kg of CO2e per kg’.

Only one-third mentioned they understood what ‘carbon-negative’ meant and the proportion was the identical for the declare: ‘75% much less carbon than the rival product’.

4 in ten mentioned they had been assured in deciphering the ‘licensed carbon-neutral’ label, however this nonetheless means that almost all are confused concerning the which means of the time period.

FleishmanHillard’s sustainability communications specialist Imogen Sackey defined: “Companies should keep away from jargon, use easy language and provides buyers easy accessibility to extra data that explains what these frequent claims imply and particulars the impression. Above all, they should guarantee environmental communications is evidence-based and holds as much as ever-rising scrutiny.

“Manufacturers that achieve this will win on a number of fronts — delivering desperately wanted impression whereas driving larger belief and defending market share in a difficult enterprise surroundings.”

The survey did reveal that the majority buyers are cautious of inexperienced claims on merchandise, largely when they’re unable to simply discover extra data. Nearly seven in ten mentioned that they had beforehand appeared for extra particulars after seeing a inexperienced declare, however struggled to seek out this data.

Clamping down on greenwashing

Companies in lots of markets are dealing with elevated regulatory stress to make sure that their inexperienced claims don’t mislead shoppers.

This pattern is most pronounced in Europe. The EU, after finalising its inexperienced finance taxonomy final yr, is now new requirements that can limit which bonds and different monetary merchandise could be known as ‘inexperienced’ or ‘accountable’.

The bloc can be labelling on shopper items. In Might, the European Parliament backed guidelines limiting the usage of carbon-related claims on merchandise to these manufacturers in a position to present sturdy proof to prospects in an easy-to-understand format. That is a part of a broader inexperienced claims directive.

Additionally it is engaged on common carbon labelling on merchandise together with meals and drinks. If labelling is standardised and comparable, proponents argue, buyers will quickly be capable of interpret and evaluate labels the identical manner they at present do for dietary data.

These modifications will have an effect on UK-headquartered corporations that promote within the EU. Additionally within the UK, the Competitors and Markets Authority (CMA) is conducting analysis and making focused interventions in response to proof of greenwashing in sectors together with style and cleansing merchandise.

Author: ZeroToHero