Bono and the U2 Boys Greenwashing

bonoU2 has launched one of the largest, most over-the-top tour production tsunamis known to rock n’ roll.  189 trucks will roll cross the world supporting what’s sure to be a really big show. Their PR team swears the tour is green (story). I think this is a perfect example of what’s wrong with the growing support for buying indulgences (carbon credits). I can pollute like crazy, waste resources and then buy my way into green heaven.

Producing 65,000 tons in carbon emissions, this tour smacks of Greenwashing to me.

Here’s the process Bono and company likely went through: 1)Let’s make the biggest bang ever for a rock concert tour (with no thought for the environment – the bang makes up for lagging brand equity) 2)Public Relations team says, “Well guys, since Mr. Bono has been talking a good Green PR game in public, this is gonna raise some Green eyebrows with a Carbon footprint of 65,000…” 3)The team hatches a plan to donate to the right green charities and buy enough carbon credits (ie cap n trade indulgences) to offset the extravagance. 4) All is right with the green rock n’ roll world. Bono and the boys get richer and still call themselves socially responsible.

I don’t buy it even though there are a few U2 songs I can’t do without, and even though I’ve enjoyed playing rock and blues bass for many years. We teach our clients that when it comes to corporate social responsibility, you should BE GOOD before you talk about being good.  Are you listening, Mr. Bono?

What do you think?

POLL: 

Is the new U2 tour Green like their PR team says?

  • No (100%, 3 Votes)
  • Yes (0%, 0 Votes)
  • I don’t care, rock on! (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 3

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About the Author:

As founder of PilmerPR, John Pilmer, APR serves as a PR and marketing communications advisor for both emerging and established companies. He offers customers more than 20 years of results-driven business PR and marketing experience. John and the firm have provided PR consultation and campaigns for clients such as Mozy, Novell, AdvancedMD, Certiport, NextPage, ElectraTherm, Altiris, Avamar, EmergeCore Networks, FSLogic, INVISUS, 10x Marketing, MWI, Project Insight, REIC, Seastone, US Synthetic and Funding Universe (now Lendio), among others.
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