How to avoid greenwash with eco certification


Greenwash claims can affect your business reputation and ultimately your bottom line, so how can you prove your products and services do what they say? One way is by seeking independent verification.

An organisation offering just that is not-for-profit Good Environmental Choice Australia(GECA). Established in 2000, GECA has certified more than 3000 products across Australia.

Its standards ensure products have a lower impact on the environment, human health, are ethically made and fit for purpose. With stringent auditing procedures GECA’s ecolabel certification provides an independent tick to specifiers and purchasers, indicating a better choice for our planet and people.

Based in Sydney, the company provides both national and international certification through its membership of the Global Ecolabelling Network. This is useful for companies working on overseas projects and international companies seeking Australian certification.

GECA’s chief executive officer Kate Harris, says uncertainty around environmental claims is all too common, but that certification cuts through the greenwash.

“We make it easy for architects, specifiers, procurement professionals and consumers to decide if a product really is as environmentally responsible as it claims to be,” Kate says.

In addition to providing solutions for sustainable consumption and production, the benefits of eco-certification can include increasing procurement opportunities for products and services and making it easier to comply with green building rating programs.

Kate says, “The GECA ecolabel is recognised by government agencies and green building schemes such as Green Star, WELL, ISCA and NABERS and our product database is linked to procurement sites across many sectors.”

In another initiative to help organisations move beyond token statements, GECA has launched a Positive Procurement Pledge working with organisations to develop, document and implement sustainable procurement policies and practices. You can sign up here.

GECA’s standards follow ISO14024 principles for global best practice in ecolabelling, which are then independently audited by JAS-ANZ accredited Conformance Assessment Bodies before a product can achieve GECA certification.


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