Published: 07/03/2009 - Updated: 06/30/2016
With the idea of avoiding misleading consumers, the Spanish Environment Ministry has restricted the use of eco-advertising. Since the regulation may be used if the words in ads only if that feature can be checked.
The measure was taken after the ministry is concerned at the proliferation of ads with environmental and green as decoy. Secretary of State for Climate Change, Teresa Ribera, explains the matter: "The first effect is positive because it helps to differentiate the products" and added that it was expected that the use of slogans sustainable arise "the risk of saturation and disbelief between the consumer."
The ministry said it had to act for fear of reiterating that the "phenomenon of the bios and the healthy products", which had to impose very strict rules to compose the situation. Today with the proliferation of green cars, oil companies that respect the environment and to the "saving forests" was a need for new regulation to avoid a repetition of the situation.
So the Secretary of State for Climate Change I choose to begin with the self: call in September to automotive companies and energy to write a code restricting green advertising, signed by the next July 9 and will enter into force on 1 of September.
Francisco Heras, Technical Education Center's Environmental Ministry indicates that the new code requires that the messages are "evident," and explains: "To say that something is green, sustainable or friend of the environment is ambiguous." Bank agrees: "A car cannot be called organic matter in their emissions. Neither can mislead us to turn the light helps the environment." In this way the new code limits the use of these words: green, eco, sustainable, but can be used "if the ad says immediately what they mean," added Heras.
The Association for Business Communication of the Self will monitor compliance with the rule. Any breach may terminate the text and signatories companies accept their opinions. The new rule also provides that advertisements "should not display behaviors damaging to the environment." It is, according to Heras, "to avoid the car in the beach at full speed or in a protected space."
So far, there is no regulation, which allowed excess, as the study found that treatment of the environment in advertising, University of Valladolid, commissioned by the Environment. The team led by sociology professor Ana Teresa López Pastor analyzed 1317 ads in 2006 and 2007. The study concludes: "The environmental issues appear in the advertising of discontinuous, often contradictory and in a chaotic and somewhat superficial."
Furthermore, the investigation revealed that 90% of the ads use a reason related to the environment, the word "emissions" appeared in 28.8% of ads on cars, carbon dioxide (CO2) in 15.4% and ecological in 14.7%. But it detected a strong presence in the car [...] a little context of sustainable use (46.2%), either by carrying a single occupant or invade areas not prepared for the car. Kia, Chrysler, Citroen, Renault, Peugeot, Volkswagen, Audi, Skoda, Seat and Ford signed the agreement.
By a decree, car ads are only obliged to include CO2 emissions from their vehicles and making it to the size of the "primary information". Marks, as reported Ecologists in Action and Consumers Union of Spain, include the message in small print, so the Catalan Agency for Consumer Affairs opened files to Nissan, Honda, Seat and Volkswagen-Audi. Between the energy, have already signed code Cepsa, Repsol, Endesa and Acciona.
Heras said that the regulation should lead to these companies to rethink their advertising. Where advertisers find that empty slits the rule does not preclude Environment harden.
The issue in Latin America: the case of Argentina
In Argentina, there is a code that governs the terms that can be used in advertisements. While the country is still not widely used commercially the advantage of being "green" or "sustainable", even in that sense there are any restrictions or work towards.
Fernando Braga Menéndez publicist, who was a client Greenpeace for ten years, agreed to the limits placed on Spain. "Unfortunately, this legislation is lagging behind what is termed" ecological makeup. "I agree to be regulated. You cannot lie. There are many environmental campaigns that are lying," he said, adding: "It's going in other countries such as Mexico."
Baintrub Martin, who heads the agency Persuasion, felt: "I know the rules, and I am very interested in favor of regulating things that promote the communication of deception. Here, for example. The campaigns themselves are regulated, but not satisfied. Those things that serve to protect the citizen and the consumer seem well to me."
Baintrub said that after restricted use of the terms light and diet, the Department of Policy, Regulation and Relations Health and the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Food issued joint resolutions. Two parameters were established for the use of the term light: the absolute, which is estimated according to the amount of fat, sugar or energy value per 100 g (solids) or 100 ml (liquids), and the comparison is provided in connection with similar goods in accordance with a table of percentages.
Source: La Nación / El País