Clean Creatives wreak havoc at Cannes Lions by calling out Edelman’s fossil fuel record

Clean Creatives, an organisation that holds the advertising industry to account over its ties to fossil fuel firms, has disrupted this year’s Cannes Lions festival with a range of protests.

With sustainability high on the agency at Cannes this year, Clean Creatives has vocally targeted agencies that continue to produce work for firms that are still actively engaged in fossil fuel pollution.

Clean Creatives activist Tolmeia Gregory initially challenged comms firm Edelman at a Q&A session following a panel discussing whether Gen Z is closing the gender pay gap, by asking them whether their continued collaboration with Shell, Chevron and Exxon is conducive to maintaining a good relationship with Gen Z.

Activists followed this up by protesting in-person to president and CEO, Richard Edelman to point out his businesses’ hypocrisy, as despite hosting various panels on sustainability in advertising – it continues to work with big-name oil firms.

In a further development, media agency Gale announced this week that it would be signing up to the Clean Creatives’ anti-fossil fuel pledge.

Announced by CEO Brad Simms at Cannes Lions, Gale is the biggest agency to sign up to the pledge so far, in which agencies promise not to work with any clients involved in fossil fuel pollution.

Commenting on the move, Simms said: “Gale signing the Clean Creatives pledge is a commitment to the most important thing we have: our planet.

“Refusing to work with fossil fuel companies is the least we can do to support our future. This pledge represents our commitment to sustainability and progress in climate change and we hope it inspires other agencies to do the same.”


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