This morning, Environmental Leader broke the news that controversial bottled-water giant Fiji Water would be the focus of a class action lawsuit that alleges the company “has profited by greenwashing claims that it’s water products are carbon negative.”
The suit, which was filed in California by the Newport Trial Group on behalf of Desiree Worthington and others, seeks restitution for “the false claims from which [Fiji Water Company has] richly profited.”
After widespread criticism for the immense carbon footprint of collecting, packaging, and shipping its plastic bottled water products to consumers all over the world, Fiji Water made a public pledge to go carbon-negative (not just carbon neutral) in 2007.
To make good on the claim that it is “the world’s only carbon negative bottled water,” which the company has used to aggressively market their products to earth-conscious consumers for years, Fiji would have to remove more carbon pollution from the atmosphere than they release into it during production.
According to the Newport Trial Group’s complaint, the “Defendants [Fiji Water Company] justify this claim by employing a discredited carbon accounting method known as ‘forward crediting.’ Thus, Defendants do not remove more carbon pollution than they create; they simply claim credit for carbon removal that may or may not take place – up to several decades in the future.”
Currently, no information is available about the amount of restitution being sought by the plaintiffs.
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