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A survey of advertising agencies has found little, if any, interest in the greenhouse gas emissions of highly-polluting clients.

The survey is part of a Comms Declare report, which found a concerning gap between climate aspirations and actions.

This week we're fired up about:
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Belinda Noble
Support Climate Communications
By Matt Bray


Comms Declare has released the first report into climate actions by Australia's advertising and communications world. The report finds that people aged under 30 in the industry care deeply about climate and many are prepared to move jobs if their agency isn't acting accordingly.

Two years of surveys has revealed that agencies know climate is important but they are failing to take the difficult, transformative actions required to make a real difference.

For example, 74% want to reach net zero but only 39% had a clear understanding of their carbon footprint.

The transparency of top agencies when it comes to climate actions and clients is also rated.

Here's some fun facts about the client pollution that is part of an agency's Scope 3 emissions.

To put this in perspective, Che Proximity's clients produce 9% of Australia's annual greenhouse gas emissions.



CHE Proximity clients: 44, 306, 963
M&C Saatchi clients: 18, 400, 826 
GraCosway clients: 13, 638, 033

Australia: 494, 200, 000
Average Australian person: 22

*Tonnes of CO2 equivalent per year
Image by Matt Bray, Comms Declare



1. The Northern Territory Government for hiring a new, private firm to research fracking impacts in Beetaloo, ditching Charles Darwin University researchers that found fracking could harm 11 new species of underground aquatic creatures, known as stygofauna.

2. The Queensland Government for ignoring emissions from diesel generation and LNG plants, making the state's progress report against renewable energy targets look a little better than it should have.

3. The AFR Higher Education Awards for awarding Woodside Petroleum's $66.5m sponsorship of Monash University because it is "an exemplar of a sustainable, beneficial, impactful and scalable relationship... strongly focussed on assisting Australia in its energy transition."  Woodside is so committed to the energy transition its going ahead with Scarborough, Australia's biggest fossil fuel investment in a decade... speaking of which...

4. Woodside CEO Meg O'Neill for penning an opinion article that Scarborough will "help the transition to a net zero future", with no mention of methane emissions (honourable mention to the Australian for the editorial Woodside is a global good with gas). 

5. The Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF) for claiming there is "ongoing reductionism and cancel culture on hydrocarbons". 

6. Saudi Arabia for planning to issue green bonds. Buyer beware.

7. Rugby Australia for extending and expanding its sponsorship deal with gas giant Santos for another three years.

8. Asia Corporate Excellence & Sustainability Awards (ACES) 2021 for giving the "Green Innovation" gong to Shell because it used upcycled bricks in a new petrol station. The judges found "The eco-brick mobility station is an example of Pilipinas Shell's longstanding commitment to sustainability". 

9. Singapore power firm, Singas, for this lovely ad (credit to Robin Hicks at Eco News for calling these out).

10. Sky News Australia for airing 'former radio commentator' Michael Burd saying the science on climate is not settled because: "for every one scientist that believes in man made climate change, there's another two that don't".
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An initiative of Comms Declare

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