Not to be confused with greenwashing, which is when a company presents itself as more sustainable than it actually is, greenhushing occurs when companies intentionally keep quiet about their sustainability efforts, whether they are successful or not. This silence is driven by the fear of backlash, the inability to achieve goals, or the desire to cover up greenwashing practices.
As customers hold companies accountable for greenwashing and ESG has become hotly politicized, greenhushing has emerged as a new trend. Instead of being transparent, some organizations choose silence for fear of being called out. In doing so, they actively hide their environmental, social, and governance (ESG) goals, despite these themes being an attractive quality to consumers, stakeholders, and team members.