BP’s brand is all over the Olympics. Incredibly, it has landed the prestigious title of ‘Sustainability Partner’. It is bankrolling educational and cultural initiatives, providing fuel for the Games, and sponsoring many athletes. The Olympics are the perfect vehicle for BP to try to convince the public that it is a good corporate citizen, playing an important social and environmental role.
But BP is one of the most unsustainable companies on the planet. It is entirely focused on extracting every last fossil fuel it can get its hands on, including tar sands, the most destructive industrial project on the planet. If the Canadian tar sands are fully exploited as planned, they will contribute more than 10% of all the carbon emissions that humanity can afford to emit, ever, if we are to prevent runaway climate change. Extracting oil from tar sands also destroys swathes of boreal forest, uses huge amounts of fresh water, and causes soaring rates of illness in local communities.
And despite the Deepwater Horizon disaster having permanently destroyed large portions of the Gulf Coast, BP is proudly restarting its deepwater drilling. It is also exploring the Arctic, where the volatile conditions make a Gulf-like spill both more likely to happen and much harder to control – and such a disaster would cause unprecedented damage to the fragile ecoystem. Oh, and BP recently closed down its solar division, giving up on this essential renewable technology, because it just wasn’t profitable enough.
Overall, BP's business plans are based on dangerous scenarios that would lead to a six degree temperature rise and, inevitably, catastrophic climate change.
Vote BP for Greenwash Gold 2012!
“The irony of BP sponsoring the “Greenest Olympics ever” is actually palpable in the Gulf of Mexico. Although the BP media machine professes all is well in the gulf, oil and tar balls still wash ashore with dead dolphins, turtles and other animals; people are sick from toxic exposure, and fisher communities have lost their livelihood.
How quickly the world forgets that on April 20, 2010 — the 40th anniversary of Earth Day— the United States experienced the largest oil drilling disaster in history. BP's blowout introduced 200 million gallons of oil and 2 million gallons of toxic dispersant into the Gulf, the effects of which we are still dealing with today."
Bryan Parras, Gulf Coast Fund for Ecological Health and Community Renewal
Photo credit: Petty Officer First Class John Masson, , U.S. Coast Guard (from the website: http://www.livescience.com/19279-deepwater-horizon-oil-spill-images.html)