Will You Look For The WindMade Label?

After two years of gaining little notice as a certification for companies that run substantially on wind power, WindMade is going where the eyeballs are. It’s aiming for package space on products themselves, just like other feel-good stamps of approval, like “fair trade” and “organic.”

The organization, hatched by Vestas and backed by WWF, said on Monday that its WindMade product label can now be applied to any product or service “that used a minimum share of 75% of renewable energy of their production’s total electricity footprint, with wind power representing the largest share.”

WindMade

image via WindMade

WindMade had lured several companies into its corporate program since its launch in 2011, but there was little evidence to be found that even its biggest backers – its founding partners – were doing much of anything with the label in their communications. Now that a product label has been instituted, the organization is encouraging consumers to help in raising the WindMade profile with a social media campaign it calls “Show Your Care.”

“Now it is time for consumers to speak out,” Angelika Pullen, WindMade’s communications director, said in a statement. “We know that they care, and we know that they want to see more companies using wind power. With our campaign, we invite them to actively show their support, and to put pressure on their favourite brands to use this clean, emissions-free energy source for manufacturing our most beloved products.”

WindMade said that its product certification takes into consideration the entire manufacturing process of a product, covering “the entire power consumption for all product components, from the extraction of the raw materials all the way to the product leaving the factory gate.”

WWF said it’s for real.

“The cradle-to-gate approach ensures that the label is meaningful, and it makes it robust and credible to consumers,” said Susanne Fratzscher, senior advisor on renewable energy of WWF’s Global Climate and Energy Initiative, and a member of WindMade’s technical committee.

Pete Danko is a writer and editor based in Portland, Oregon. His work has appeared in Breaking Energy, National Geographic's Energy Blog, The New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle and elsewhere.

  • Alec Sevins

    For many of us, “WindMade” just represents more landscapes blighted by these massive industrial towers. You can call it “green” but it’s really white, stark and too bloody big. One must practice selective blindness to not see 400+ foot towers as out of place in rural areas.

    A certain cereal company has quaint drawings of wind turbines on its boxes, making them seem no taller than old fashioned water-pump windmills, which are also gray and don’t stand out nearly as much in contrast to surroundings.

    If these white monsters were installed directly in urban areas (where most of the power seems to go) you’d see a lot less self-congratulatory fawning. They’d have more of a “War of the Worlds” (tripods) effect, possibly scaring kids. I don’t think a lot of people really appreciate their scale. They dwarf most other man-made structures except skyscrapers.

    Solar panels on existing roofs are far more ecologically-sound and respectful of nature. Of course, power companies don’t like decentralization of power sources.