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EU warns airlines on 'greenwashing'


Europe's airlines, twenty of them at least, have been called on the carpet by the European Commission over 'greenwashing,' false or misleading claims about what they are doing to protect or clean up the environment.

The Commission, which is the EU's executive body, issued letters to the airlines asking them to respond to "several types" of "misleading green claims" they made to appeal to consumers. The letters give the airlines 30 days to respond, giving their plan to bring their practices into line with EU law.

The commission did not name the airlines, but among the carriers listed in the initial complaint the Commission was responding to are a broad range of well-known airlines: KLM, together with Air Baltic, Air Dolomiti, Air France, Austrian, Brussels Airlines, Eurowings, Finnair, Lufthansa, Norwegian, Ryanair, SAS, Swiss, TAP, Volotea, Vueling and Wizz Air.

Among the claims that are labeled misleading because there is no scientific evidence for them, are use of the terms 'green,' 'sustainable,' and 'responsible' in advertising, claims of future net-zero emissions without clear and verified targets, and inaccurate reporting of CO2 data.

Photo: Benjamin van Waart/Flickr

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