Standard Chartered - beautiful weather
Standard Chartered Bank is once again sponsoring the Weather Photographer of The Year competition.
In their words 'Harnassing the power of weather and climate photography'.... It 'celebrates striking images that help focus our attention on the impact of weather and our changing climate'. The competition is held in collaboration with the Royal Metrological Society; The shortlist shows some beautiful images of different weather events. So far so good.
But what they fail to say is their bank is one of the leading funders of fossil fuel expansion - having provided $46 billion in finance since 2016. By the way 2016 is when the landmark Paris COP was held, with 194 parties agreeing to take action to limit temperature rises caused by increasing GHG in emissions. Standard Chartered presumably saw it as an opportunity to invest in fossil fuels.
A group of protestors has been going to the bank's HQ in London for a year now to call out their behaviour and demand they stop. The bank believe they are making a difference - and argue it is important to work with the oil companies and the oil exporters. That'll keep the banks profits flowing.
Edelman working for Al Jaber’s bid to Lead COP28 Climate Conference
This is a sadly typical long sorry story for a country that has the highest per capita carbon emissions in the world. Several times higher than other cities in similar climates. Perhaps it'll keep an opportunity for the UAE to sell their oil?
"With three months to go until the COP28 United Nations climate talks begin in Dubai, critics have stepped up their condemnation of the decision to put Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, the head of Abu Dhabi’s state oil company ADNOC, in charge of the conference.
What few may realize, however, is that Al Jaber’s ascent to the highest levels of climate diplomacy began 16 years ago, and Edelman, the largest public relations firm in the world, played a crucial role."
"To enhance the UAE’s green image, Edelman worked on what was known as the Masdar Initiative. The campaign promoted the state-owned renewable energy company Masdar and Masdar City — the UAE’s futuristic “zero-carbon” metropolis — while casting Al Jaber, the head of the Masdar company, as the face of the petrostate’s promised clean energy future."
Gas companies attacking electric heat pumps
They are at it again - DeSmog reports on how Gas companies are up to their old tricks "Gas-linked companies’ attack on electric heating confuses consumers and leaves UK trailing behind Europe, say experts".
An energy trade association is using a PR firm to put out stories throwing doubt on electrical heat pumps and trying to influence givernment policy.
"Negative stories about electric heat pumps have featured in outlets such as The Sun, Telegraph and The Express, in which damning headlines dub the technology “Soviet-style”, “financially irrational” as well as “costly and noisy”. Broadcast media has amplified similar messages on BBC 2’s Newsnight, LBC, TalkTV and GB News.
The company driving this coverage is the Birmingham-based WPR Agency, which was hired by the EUA to deliver an “integrated PR and social media campaign” to “help change the direction of government policy”.
Blue Hydrogen - coming to save us or a greenwashing smokescreen?
Blue hydrogen is being enthusiastically promoted by natural gas producers as the simplest and cheapest answer to decarbonising our economies. But recent studies have shown that it's overall greenhouse gas emissions footprint is worse than natural gas. So, is this just the latest in a long series of diversions and deceptions from the fossil fuel industry?
Double Agents. Oil and Gas lobbyists working for Green Groups
Reported in The Guardian "More than 1,500 lobbyists in the US are working on behalf of fossil-fuel companies while at the same time representing hundreds of liberal-run cities, universities, technology companies and environmental groups that say they are tackling the climate crisis, the Guardian can reveal.
Lobbyists for oil, gas and coal interests are also employed by a vast sweep of institutions, ranging from the city governments of Los Angeles, Chicago and Philadelphia; tech giants such as Apple and Google; more than 150 universities; some of the country’s leading environmental groups – and even ski resorts seeing their snow melted by global heating."
Have a look at the database here showing who works for which fossil fuel company and what else they are up to!
A guilt free Cruise !
Cruise ships are being promoted as green - because theya re using LPG. Reported by Transport and Environment T&E is working to reverse shipping’s growing addiction to liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a marine fuel – responsible for global warming through carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and methane (CH4) slips.
whatever kind of fossil fuel used it comes down to the same problems - increasing greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere. LPG releases more methine up to 80 x stronger as a greenhouse gas than CO2.
Google profiting from Big Oil
The Center for Countering Digital Hate comprehensively details how Google enables Big Oil’s greenwashing.
We reveal that nearly half of the $23.7 million spent on Google search ads by oil and gas companies in the last two years have targeted search terms on environmental sustainability. The five companies studied in this report, ExxonMobil, British Petroleum (BP), Chevron, Shell, and Aramco, have polluted our search results while Google raked in their dirty money.
Net Zero Scrutiny Group - who are they?
DeSmog reports on a recent letter in the Telegraph:
High-Profile Allies of Anti-Net Zero Parliamentary Group Revealed in Telegraph Letter
Former Conservative ministers and high-ranking MPs among those who have backed Net Zero Scrutiny Group’s new attack on green policy
"The list of NZSG allies released today includes individuals associated with the Global Warming Policy Foundation(GWPF), the UK’s principal climate science denial group, which has extensive ties with the parliamentary caucus. The letter in the Telegraph was signed by Conservative MP Andrea Jenkyns and Lord Frost, both of whom are directors at the GWPF, which regularly questions the scientific basis of human-caused climate change.
The majority (54 percent) of Conservative MPs who signed the NZSG letter are either current or former members of the European Research Group (ERG) – a faction of the Conservative Party that supported a ‘hard’ Brexit and was reportedly the model for the NZSG.
What is #greenhushing & why are brands doing it? Greenhushing is when companies choose to not communicate their sustainability efforts "While #greenwashing deliberately exaggerates a company’s sustainability claims to mislead people to think that they are more sustainable than they actually are, greenhushing deliberately under-communicates a company’s sustainable practices. So by definition, they’re the inverse of each other. "
Why is greenhushing bad? It keeps sustainability from becoming the norm, doesn't allow clients to make informed decisions and can be misleading.
Why are brands greenhushing?
1. The fear of being criticized and getting a bad reputation
2. To reduce customer guilt
3. There’s a negative perception of sustainable products
4. Companies are not confident they’ll meet their goals
5. There’s pressure on smaller companies
6. Companies are unsure when or how to communicate sustainability efforts
How to avoid greenhushing?
1. Be transparent
2. Admit imperfection
3. Let the laws do the talking
4. Choose your partners carefully
FIFA made false statements about carbon-neutral tournament
Fifa made false statements about the reduced environmental impact of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, a Swiss regulator has said. Football's world governing body claimed the tournament would be the first "fully carbon-neutral World Cup".
Advertising regulator the Swiss Fairness Commission (SLK) has upheld complaints from five European nations. "Fifa was not able to provide proof that the claims were accurate during the proceedings," the SLK said.
Read more on fossil free football
.... "The advertising authority states FIFA should “refrain in future from making the contested allegations, unless it can provide, at the time of communication, full proof of the calculation, using generally accepted methods, of all CO2 emissions caused by the tournament, and proof that these CO2 emissions have been fully offset”.
UK Government: investing in fossil fuels
The UK government is under attack for investing taxpayers’ money in fossil fuel companies, a hospital in Kenya accused of imprisoning patients who couldn’t pay for treatment, and a business in the Democratic Republic of the Congo that exposed workers to dangerous chemicals and dumped untreated industrial waste.
MPs on the international development committee said the British International Investment holds at least 20 investments in fossil fuel companies, as revealed by Open Democracy last year. It has invested, through a third party, in Dangote Industries, owned by Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote. (Dangote Industries is a business conglomerate that owns Dangote Cement, Africa’s leading cement producer, and runs the “largest coal mining” operation in Nigeria.) Read the full story here in The Guardian
Greenwashing Adverts face UK ban
Adverts claiming products are carbon neutral by using offsetting face UK ban. The Guardian reports "Advertising watchdog to begin stricter enfiorcement on use of terms such as 'carbon neutral' amid concerns over offsets" Read the story here.
About time the trickery of some of these companies and their claims were exposed.
Greenwash from energy companies
Greenwash in meat production
Greenwash in aviation
greenwash: mind your language
You've been hearing them all year, the way the government and big business talk about their progress in reducing emissions. Admittedly from time to time the stories are true, but are mostly exaggerated and are mostly just deceiptful. They want to tell us about all the great things they are doing but it's important to understand how they tell their stories and how in doing this how they mislead us all - into believing they're actually doing something positive. A recent article suggests we must be on alert all the time to spot Greenwash - "To survive this post-Cambridge Analytica world you must treat everything you encounter as if it might be a #sponsoredpost". Read the article here
The biggest myth of all is that we can look forward to infinite growth. In 1961 the UN produced statistics to show that the world population was living within what nature could support. Since then the estimated level of resources and ecosystem services required to support human activities today is just over 1.7 Earths, fast moving to becoming 2 Earths by 2030. (reference). If everyone on the planet lived like the population of the UK we would need 3 Earths. That's pretty simple to understand; what we urgently need to do is slow down, stop some of our destructive habits and help nature recover. We carry on, the truth manipulated, destructive behaviour continuing and denial all around. Companies and governments across the world making it look as if they are trying and doing something. Watch carefully.
In spite of the occasional bit of good news, most of the landscape is pretty bleak. Big corporations and governments around the world are finally starting to say the right things about the Climate And Ecological Emergency; it's only taken them 50 years since science showed unequivocally what a catastrophe we are heading towards. Unfortunately their fine words are often accompanied by lies, half truths and disinformation. We will be highlighting some of the most spectacular examples of this cynical behaviour and awarding them "Certified 100% Greenwash".