Fossil fuel adverts 'should be banned', campaigners claim 

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Fossil fuel adverts 'should be banned' unless they have a tobacco-style warning about their contribution to climate change, campaigners claim ClientEarth claims oil giant BP is misleading customers with its TV adverts   Charity is advocating a ban on fossil fuel ads or 'tobacco-style' warnings   A total of 96 per cent of BP's business remains dedicated to fossil fuels  

By Joe Pinkstone For Mailonline

Published: 17:43 GMT, 4 December 2019 | Updated: 18:04 GMT, 4 December 2019

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Adverts for fossil fuels should be banned, or forced to carry tobacco-style warnings, according to an environmental charity. 

ClientEarth, a charity with a reputation for taking legal action on defence of the environment, says oil giant BP is misleading customers in its TV adverts. 

It alleges that the firm is trying to 'greenwash' viewers with images of wind turbines, electric cars and solar panels while the vast majority of its business remains focused on fossil fuels. 

BP, the firm responsible for spilling almost five million barrels of oil into the ocean during the Deepwater Horizon disaster, 'strongly rejects' these claims. 

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ClientEarth, a charity with a reputation for taking legal action on defence of the environment, says oil giant BP is misleading customers in its TV adverts (stock)

ClientEarth, a charity with a reputation for taking legal action on defence of the environment, says oil giant BP is misleading customers in its TV adverts (stock)

ClientEarth says BP portrays itself in its advertisements as a forward-thinking firm that is 'part of the climate solution'.

In actuality, 96 per cent of the multi-billion dollar company's business remains in oil and gas, the charity states. 

For every hundred pounds it spends, only four of them go towards low-carbon investments.

The complaint from the eco-focused charity specifically mentions BP's 'keep advancing' and 'possibilities everywhere' campaigns.

Instead of allowing firms that are heavily reliant on fossil fuels to issue what it deems to be disingenuous content, ClientEarth is advocating a 'tobacco-style' system intended to expose the damage caused by fossil fuels and subsequent greenhouse gases. 

The complaint is being submitted to the Government's UK National Contact Point, the organisation responsible for altering guidelines for ads. 

ClientEarth climate lawyer Sophie Marjanac said: 'BP is spending millions on an advertising campaign to give the impression that it's racing to renewables, that its gas is cleaner, and that it is part of the climate solution.

'While BP's advertising focuses on clean energy, in reality, more than 96 per cent of the company's annual capital expenditure is on oil and gas.

'According to its own figures, BP is

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