Since Cecilia Malmström was attending the political fair Almedalen Week in Sweden, Friends of the Earth Sweden took the opportunity to deliver the prize, while she was on her way to a seminar on the same treaty that caused her winning the award.
Today, Friends of the Earth Sweden announced the winner of the Swedish Greenwash Award. Of five nominees, the European Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström was voted winner for her statements about the environment and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).
The Swedish Greenwash Award goes out to organizations and politicians for false green communication. The reason can be everything from lies about environmental work to communicating small green investments to draw attention away from larger shortcomings. Malmström won the award due to her stating that TTIP won’t affect or threaten for example environmental legislations.
– Contrary to what Malmström says, Friends of the Earth Sweden sees the treaty as a great threat to both environment and democracy, says Ellie Cijvat, chairperson of Friends of the Earth Sweden. Leaked documents reveal, very clearly, an ambition to give corporations large opportunities to influence laws and legislations. In that scenario, protection of the environment, public health and workers’ rights are often seen as trade barriers, Cijvat continues.
The prize ceremony took place during the great political fair Almedalen Week. Cecilia Malmström’s has, through her Cabinet Secretary Catrine Norrgard, announced that she can’t travel to Sweden to receive the prize. Nevertheless she will attend a couple of other seminars at the very same place, Almedalen Week. The differencce is that those seminars consist mostly of supporters of TTIP.
This was the sixth annual Swedish Greenwash Award, and it has received more attention than ever. Several candidates have shown that they take the nominations seriously, and have also made public reactions. This should also be seen as proof that this type of cam-paigns does have effect. Besides creating a buzz around the important discussion about greenwashing among those who vote, it also creates a public debate – which is one the environmental movement’s most important goals.
The other candidates 2015 were Rikshem, The Body Shop, Swedish Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and EcoEnergy Africa.
Friends of the Earth is the world’s largest democratic environmental organization, with more than two million members in 75 countries. Questions are welcome to:
Ellie Cijvat, chairperson
Pelle Hällje, head of communication