EDF Green Energy Day branding faces legal action

LONDON - EDF's Green Energy Day, launched today, has been overshadowed by a rival energy provider, which is to sue the French giant over its green Union flag branding.

EDF...High Court action plus ASA investigation
EDF...High Court action plus ASA investigation

Ecotricity, which develops wind farms and provides electricity to more than 40,000 UK homes, has launched a High Court copyright action.

It claims that the Green Energy Day green Union flag is too similar to its own branding, which it has been using for two years.

A spokeswoman for Ecotricity told Campaign: "A lot of our customers have been contacting us, confused by the EDF branding.

"We know you cannot trademark a flag, but we feel that we have a good case because the colours are so similar."

Ecotricity ran an ad using its own green flag to welcome the Prime Minister Gordon Brown to power in 2007.

EDF Energy is now the largest producer of low-carbon electricity in the UK.

In a separate development, the ASA confirmed that it was investigating 84 complaints about the ad, which claim EDF's advertising is misleading for implying the company is both green and British.

The ASA said it was not investigating 23 separate complaints that the branding is unpatriotic.

A spokesman for EDF Energy said: "We are disappointed by Ecotricity’s comments, particularly given our personal invitation to them to work together on the challenges of climate change, and to become part of our Team Green Britain initiative. This invitation to work together remains open.
"Our record of compliance with the ASA code of practice is industry leading. In fact, unlike many other suppliers, in the past five years we have not had a single complaint upheld against us."