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USW Slams DuPont Over Greenwashing

The United Steelworkers says that instead of being a “sustainable” chemical company, DuPont engages in “greenwashing,” LOHAS reports.

A key aspect of the USW report (PDF) details the climate impact of DuPont’s products, which, according to the article, the chemical giant has refused to calculate.

“DuPont is skillful in giving the public the impression it truly is concerned and engaging in activities to create a ‘better, safer, healthier planet,’ but when its profit motive collides with the environment, profit usually wins out,” said USW International president Leo Gerard.

Behind DuPont’s green public image, the company engages in behind-the-scenes lobbying to control the regulation of environmental issues, according to the USW. The Union also says that by participating in voluntary reporting efforts, the company can avoid revealing anything but the most general and favorable information, while avoiding facility-level reporting that would present a more accurate and problematic picture.

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2 thoughts on “USW Slams DuPont Over Greenwashing

  1. I really don’t mind DuPont being exposed for their “greenwashing”. However, I am not sure that USW, or any other organized union has the right to point the finger. I’ve been participating in the wind power industry for the last 28 years, and only very recently have the unions been paying positive attention to renewable energy. It wasn’t that long ago that the union lobbies could always – without exception – be counted upon to oppose any, and every renewable energy proposition eminating from Congress.

    The wind industry had often used union labor in high voltage and wind turbine erection operations without any controversy. Today, more and more union requirements are being imposed on developers and their contractors with varying degrees of success, and a noticeable increase in costs.

    The wind industry has, and will continue to welcome all new players to this fast growing, exciting, and necessary industry. I hope that the value of political contribution is accompanied by skill and efficiency.


  2. Mr. Haller certainly is entitled to his point of view, and his support for the exposure of DuPont and other corporate greenwashers is welcome. However his opinion that labor unions have no right to bring such information to the public is misguided at best. It is specifically mistaken in respect to the United Steelworkers. Activism and policy advocacy on behalf of the environment is nothing new for us. Our union has been supporting environmental initiatives and the responsible use of energy for over 30 years because of our belief that an environmentally responsible economy will provide more, not fewer jobs, for unionized workers, and because the lives and health of our children and grandchildren depend upon getting it right. We are a founding member of the Apollo Alliance and our president serves as its co-chair. We expose companies like DuPont because their behavior harms workers and communities. We support and encourage companies like wind turbine manufacturer Gamesa in western Pennsylvania because they understand the value of work and community, and because they contribute directly to a sustainable future for all of us.

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