In 2005 General Electric announced a 90 million dollar advertisement campaign on something called Ecomagination. This was GE’s nationwide campaign to convince people that they are committed to being green and committed to using cleaner and more efficient sources of energy. As time went on however, the campaign began to seem more and more like a greenwash as the facts did not back up their claims made to the public.
The ad shown above is GE’s superbowl ad in 2011. In the ad they claim to be using organic waste to fuel bio-gas engines and essentially say that everyone should be really excited about how green they are. In the commercial they even painted their “energy source” green just to show how “green” it is. The commercial also features a rock band composed entirely of cows to show how they are using natural waste.
While GE does have the ability to produce cleaner energy, they are certainly not a green company. According to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Toxic Release Inventory in 2007, General Electric was actually the 5th largest producer of toxic chemicals in the world and another study showed that General Electric is the 6th most toxic company when considering population numbers exposed to their pollution and toxicity level from their plants. This is a perfect example of greenwashing that is unfortunately done by practically every company that advertises to be green while producing a product. They share to the public one small green quality of their company and hope nobody looks into the rest of what they are doing.