Tell Hollywood: It’s Not Green to “Greenwash” Sewage Sludge in Gardens
Some of Hollywood's "green" celebrities—Rosario Dawson and a bevy of starlets—thought they were promoting organic school gardens for inner-city kids. But the Environmental Media Association (EMA) teamed them up with a secretive corporation whose main business is selling Los Angeles sewage sludge products!
That company calls its Kellogg brand "quality organics" and deceptively labels bags sold at the garden store as "garden soil" made from "compost"—with no mention that they are made from industrial and human waste. Sewage sludge is hazardous material containing dioxins, PCBs, medical waste, industrial solvents, flame retardants, heavy metals, endocrine disruptors and other contaminants. That's why federal law bars the use of sewage sludge-based products in organic gardens.
So, when news broke that Kellogg Garden Products provided sewage sludge products to EMA's organic school gardens—and its spokesperson even posed with those products at the gardens—you'd think EMA and its stars would cut all ties to the sludge industry.
But you'd be wrong. Instead of denouncing the contamination of the kids' gardens and the corporation's effort to "greenwash" its brand through associating with stars devoted to organic produce, EMA is sticking with its corporate donor. So far.
Tell Hollywood it's not green to partner with a company that put sewage sludge on school gardens and that sells this stuff without labeling it to say "This product is derived from sewage sludge." Send your letter to EMA now!
I ask EMA to join us in opposing the deceptive labeling of sewage sludge products as “quality organics,” “soil,” “compost," or "natural fertilizer.” No one should unknowingly grow vegetables in sewage sludge products contaminated with metals, flame retardants, anti-bacterial residues, and more. It’s not organic. It’s not green. And, it’s just not right.
Now that you know your corporate donor contaminated organic school gardens with deceptively labeled sewage sludge products—and even posed with those products with people who are devoted to organic produce—I ask you to do the right thing. Clean up the gardens instead of just cleaning up the word “organically grown” from your website, and clean up your act by helping to blow the whistle on the sewage sludge-to-gardens scam.
I respectfully request that EMA take these actions:
1. End your association with Kellogg Garden Products or any other sewage sludge industry partner, unless they come clean and put an obvious and honest label on their bags of garden supplies reading: "This product is derived from sewage sludge."
2. Tell the schools, the school kids, their parents, and EMA’s celebrities that the gardens may be contaminated with hazardous materials and fix any contamination;
3. Use only certified organic products in the gardens in the future and get them only from companies whose main business is selling genuinely organic products; and
4. Use your spotlight to alert Americans that the sewage sludge industry is trying to pass off its products as “organic” “compost” to unwittingly put on our home gardens.