The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has proposed revisions to its environmental marketing guidelines that would require companies to provide specific information regarding claims about the “green” benefits of a product. The proposed revisions, signed October 6, 2010, cover a range of claims, including those involving biodegradability, renewable energy and carbon offsets. They prohibit companies from making environmental claims without providing easily accessible information about what the claims precisely mean and evidence that they are true.

The proposed revisions also require a company to disclose its relationship with a third-party certification body, the requirements met for certification and associated product labels, which would be not be allowed to promote overly broad environmental claims. The proposed revisions have been published in the Federal Register, and FTC will accept comments until December 10, 2010.