European Commission


Case detail

B a c k

Directive article Article 6 1.
Article 6 1. (b)
Article 6 2.
Article 6 2. (a)
National ID 16 O 560/10
Country Germany Decision date 07/12/2010
Common name Decision type Court decision, first degree
Court Landgericht Berlin Plaintiff(s)
Court translation District Court Berlin Defendant(s)
Subject environmental claim
Keywords advertisementcomparative advertisingenvironmental marketingunfair competition

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(1) The publishing of statistics can be considered a commercial practice.

 (2) The publishing of statistics may constitute a misleading comparative advertisement under certain circumstances.


The defendant, an association in the nuclear energy industry, published a photomontage in which it mapped wind turbines next to nuclear power stations and compared the environmental compatibility of both energy sources, coming to the conclusion that nuclear energy is as ecological as wind energy because there are no CO2 emissions.

The plaintiff is the largest operator of wind energy plants.

The plaintiff requested a cease-and-desist order against the defendant to use the advertisement concerned.

Legal issue

(1) Can the publishing of statistics be considered a commercial practice?

 (2) If so, can the publishing of statistics constitute a misleading comparative advertisement?


(1) The court established that the publishing of the above described statistics, constituted a commercial practice in terms of § 2 No. 1 UWG, because it serves the acceptance of nuclear energy and thus also the sales at the disadvantage of alternative energy sources. 

The publication of statistics may therefore constitute a commercial practice pursuant to the UCP Directive.

(2) The court further concluded that the published statistics constituted a violation of § 6 para. 2 No. 4 UWG because the defendant exploited the good reputation of wind energy in an unfair way as it transfered the good reputation of the plaintiff's energy source onto its own product, which is a so-called "image transfer".

  URL Decision Decision full text


Plaintiff's request was granted.

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