Sustainability and green living have gained a great deal of attention in the past few years. This much-needed awareness is continuing to rise, even more through the escalating usage of social media. However, one particular issue all environmental advocates face is green shaming.
Green shaming or eco-shaming is described as any kind of mockery or ridicule an individual uses to shame another for not doing enough to protect the environment. In other words, no matter how one tries to be sustainable, there will always be a person who will come out and declare all these actions inadequate.
Sustainable living is definitely hard. Green products are usually on the expensive side, and it would be difficult to deem such products affordable since we can never know the living circumstances of everyone. Aside from money, some may be struggling with health issues that may hinder them from going on certain diets, or any other issues that limit their sustainable actions. Additionally, each person has his or her own priorities when it comes to green living. One person may be focused on using less plastic. Another may focus on consuming more organic products. Both are taking action to save our planet, but neither are doing everything perfectly, and that’s okay!
However, the reality is that many environmental influencers or celebrities are getting shamed and bullied on social media for leading imperfect zero-waste lives. Cases similar to a certain environmentalist having to fly frequently and being called out a hypocrite even though this individual is helping the environment in other ways. Another scenario where an influencer is receiving hate comments for not buying organic produce or for not being vegan. More often than not, the individual getting shamed already feels guilty for their shortcomings, but “perfect zero-waste” is an incredibly challenging goal to achieve.