Nikita Mishra
Apr 22, 2024

World Earth Day 2024: 1,000 agencies say no to fossil fuels

Asia Pacific joins the Clean Creatives movement with 67 regional pledges. To mark this occasion, the anti-fossil fuel campaign group has released a new film, lampooning the advertising industry.

World Earth Day 2024: 1,000 agencies say no to fossil fuels

Globally, 1,000 advertising and PR agencies have pledged to uphold Clean Creatives' commitment and reject collaboration with fossil fuel polluters. This development is particularly significant because the world’s six largest advertising and PR companies—Omnicom Group, WPP, Interpublic Group (IPG), Publicis Groupe, Dentsu, and Havas—reportedly maintain ties to the fossil fuel industry.

Over the years, the Clean Creatives campaign has gained significant traction, marking a doubling in participation since last April. The movement encompasses diverse creative forces: 223 design agencies, 201 creative agencies, 197 branding agencies, and 183 PR agencies are all on board. Furthermore, 138 of these agencies have achieved B Corp certification.

Among the 1,000 agencies that have pledged, the United States leads with 350 headquarters, followed by the United Kingdom with 265. Canada ranks third with 65 pledges, followed by the Asia Pacific region with 67, and South Africa with 57.

Zooming in on the Asia Pacific region:

  • Australia takes the lead, contributing 37 pledges.
  • Singapore follows suit, with 11 agencies onboard.
  • India rounds out the list with 9 committed participants.
  • Finally, BangladeshChinaJapan, and Indonesia are driving positive change in the creative industry, one pledge at a time.

Notable additions to Clean Creatives’ roster include Vero’s Indonesia office, Think HQ, and Icon Agency from Australia.

To commemorate this occasion, the anti-fossil fuel campaign group has unveiled a playful video satirising the advertising industry.

The video features a Rube Goldberg machine, famously seen in Honda’s iconic ‘The Cog’ ad. Without delving into specifics here, I can reveal that the video concludes with a whimsical twist: a dumpster fire being extinguished by a Clean Creative, urging ad executives to embrace innovation and become champions in the fight against global warming.

Regarding the impact of the Clean Creatives pledge on business, executive director Duncan Meisel of Clean Creatives states: "The Clean Creatives pledge has galvanised a global community of agencies committed to serious climate action, and they are seeing countless benefits in employee engagement, client positioning, and alignment with purpose. We’re grateful to every agency that has stepped up to lead on this issue. They are demonstrating the importance of leadership, and I believe we can anticipate many more agencies joining them.”

In addition to this milestone, Clean Creatives conducted a survey among 95 of the 1,000 pledged agencies. The survey reveals that agencies signed the pledge primarily due to alignment with values and mission, closely followed by the desire to make a positive impact on the climate.

Interestingly, 37% of agencies reported positive effects on client relationships after demonstrating their commitment. Remarkably, no agency experienced any negative consequences from taking this bold step.

Vero, as the first PR agency in Asia to formally pledge against working for fossil fuel companies and their front groups, recognizes the harm that support for the fossil fuel industry inflicts on our planet and future. Chief Operating Officer Raphael Lachkar of Vero, ASEAN, adds: "Taking the Clean Creative pledge was a simple yet radical decision to do the right thing.

“We understand that any support for the fossil fuel industry harms our planet and our future. The clean creative movement will continue to grow, especially as progressive, industry-leading clients begin to hold PR agencies accountable for their work with fossil fuel brands. Client leaders can and should encourage more PR agencies to abstain from working for fossil fuel companies. The PR industry needs more agencies to stop greenwashing for fossil fuel brands. At Vero, we recognise the need for further work on our own sustainability journey. However, we are proud of our decision and affirm that we want to be part of the solution, not part of the problem. Upholding the Clean Creative Pledge keeps us on this path.”

The Clean Creatives campaign annually releases ‘F-List’ reports, which reveal contracts between fossil fuel firms and agencies. The group also holds major agencies like Edelman and Havas accountable and advocates for stricter regulations and accreditation from sustainability bodies like Ad Net Zero.


Brand/Client: Clean Creatives

Executive Director: Duncan Meisel

Creative Strategist: Joe Cole

Social Media Director: Ellie Rountree

Head of Community Organizing: Laura Comer

BTS/Stills: Shadi Perez

Executive Producer: Jonathan Hsu

Junior Producer: Peter Mamontoff

Director: Sami Kriegstein

Strategy Lead: Mike Jacobson, Creative Yam

DP: Noah Fowler

1st AC: Kerri McConnell

Gaffer: Wayne Mcelroy

Grip: Alvin Adadevoh

Sound Engineer: Anthony Thompson

Stills: Nathan Podshadley

Location: Windmill Studios

JFMX Fire Specialist: Jeff Moratti

JFMX Fire Specialist: George Fernandez

PA: Mariana Otalora

Gorilla Suit: Walker Morgan

Campaign Asia

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