Tide Cold Water Campaign claims that switching to cold water when washing your clothes is more environmentally friendly and can still clean your laundry as well as warm and hat water. They encouraged consumers to switch to cold water washing methods for one week to celebrate Earth Days. P&G claims that switching to cold water saves energy and reduces the cost of running your washing machine which leads to an overall reduction in CO2 emissions. On P&G’s website is listed their benefits of cold water washing:
“Cold water washing can contribute to dramatic energy savings around the US.
Switching to cold water washing can save enough energy in 1 year to charge a smartphone for a lifetime.*
If all US loads of laundry were switched to cold washing for 1 year, it could power the Empire State Building for up to 86 years.**
If all Las Vegas households switched to cold washing for 1 month, it could power the Strip for up to 6 days.***
If all US loads were switched to cold washing for 1 year, it could save the same amount of energy as produced for up to 20 months by the Hoover dam.****
Cold water washing can save enough energy in 1 year to power a TV for 4 months.*****”
The asters at the end of each claim indicate the special conditions that each claim is made under. These can be found at the bottom of the P&G Tide Cold Water Campaign website page.
I think this ad is guilty of the “Seven Sins of greenwashing” we discussed the other day in class. The one sin that I will discuss is the “Hidden Trade-Off”. Tide insists that their cold water laundry detergent is better for the environment because it reduces the average household energy production and then reducing CO2 emissions by not having to heat water in order to do laundry. What does does not want people to think about, though, is how much CO2 emissions are produced when created their product. By making their own laundry cleaner, people could reduce the emission that are produced from making the heavy chemical detergent and the big plastic jug.
Gretchen Marie Semancik