Northern District of Illinois Addresses “Greenwashing” Claims in Recent Case
In Curtis v. 7-Eleven, No. 21-cv-6079, 2022 WL 4182384, at * 1 (N.D. Ill. Sept. 13, 2022), the Honorable Steven C. Seeger of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois delivered an eminently readable and entertaining decision, granting in part and dismissing in part 7-Eleven’s motion to dismiss a number of “greenwashing” claims brought against it by putative class representative, Devon Curtis. Greenwashing is defined as “the act or practice of making a product, policy, activity, etc. appear to be more environmentally friendly or less environmentally damaging than it really is.” In her complaint, Curtis alleges that she purchased foam plates, foam cups, party cups, and freezer bags from 7-Eleven. Even though these products were labeled “recyclable”, Curtis alleges that they never really were, either because very few recycling facilities accept these products or because some of the products lacked markings, known as RIC numbers, which recycling facilities use to sort products by plastic type.
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