Take your green glasses off

Anke Steinbach | 20 October, 2021

            A picture of Anke steinbach with the description: Podcast episode - Anke Steinbach on greenwashing

Nowadays, everyone is living sustainably and everyone is going green. But how sustainable are companies really and what are false promises? With companies that advertise with green topics, it is important to take a closer look - and consumers should also be informed about greenwashing and learn to differentiate between serious efforts and empty promises and exaggerations. Anke Steinbach talks about this topic in the Lea podcast and takes off our green-colored glasses.


The challenge: do better business!

In many points, the world is largely controlled by the economy. In the new podcast episode from the Lea Podcast, Anke Steinbach calls for people to do business more sustainably and better.

Public awareness has increased in recent years, and more and more companies are dealing with sustainability. But one often hears the accusation of greenwashing: companies are accused of deliberately glossing over their actions, exaggerating them and thus “putting on a green cloak”. Is all green advertising a false promise, and is every sustainability report only aimed at companies showing their best behavior? It's not that easy.


Greenwashing or not, who decides?

Greenwashing is in the eye of the beholder and is usually represented by an individual opinion of the people or groups of people. The fact is that greenwashing can often not be determined on the basis of clear criteria, as it usually affects the gray areas. At the end of the day it is usually the observer who decides at what point you see something as being too glossed over or not.

It is important to consider one's own role and to question why we as citizens or consumers consider certain activities to be greenwashing and others not. Do we pay particular attention to companies where we already have a bad image and are therefore biased?

Do we also like to look the other way when it comes to our favorite products, even though we know that they have not been managed sustainably?

Moderator Christina Grubendorfer discusses some exciting examples with Anke Steinbach in which the line cannot always be drawn so clearly.


In the specification: more action, more honest communication

But Anke Steinbach wouldn't be a consultant if she didn't also take the companies to court. For almost 20 years she has been campaigning for companies to do better business and promote sustainability. She has accompanied large companies in many industries on their way to transformation and knows where the pitfalls lurk. For example, the danger of greenwashing is often simply underestimated. Communication has to become more approachable and often more honest. Companies should take all issues that are really important from a sustainability perspective seriously. Many companies shy away from getting out of their comfort zone and courageously making difficult decisions, that sustainability automatically entails. This can be done better! - she says and encourages us all to go forward in a appreciative, constructive - and courageous way!


You can listen to the podcast here!

In the book “Do you speak sustainability?“ Anke Steinbach devotes an entire chapter to greenwashing. You can get the book here!