A Bad Romance

By Steve Gates

Dear NRPG members and interested,

As Climate Change, due to burning fossil fuels, is arguably one of the biggest threats to the long term survival of our Environment as we know it, you may like to sign this petition.

Kind regards,
Steve Gates

President, NRPG Bushcarers

Woodside is using the West Australian Symphony Orchestra (WASO) to distract from its climate-wrecking plans.

While WASO is bringing music to the ears of West Australians, Woodside is about to commence seismic blasting for one of the dirtiest new fossil fuel projects, Scarborough gas, off the West Australian coast.

The project could unleash 1.6 billion tonnes of carbon emissions over the next quarter of a century – equivalent to nearly 15 coal-fired power stations – making Scarborough one of Australia’s most damaging fossil fuel developments.

Seismic blasting will disrupt delicate marine habitats, harm dolphins, turtles, sharks, rays, and sea snakes and deafen endangered whales. A deaf whale is a dead whale.

With Woodside set to commence seismic blasting any day now, we must stop any efforts to sanitise this climate-wrecking project through sponsorship of the arts. With your support, we can encourage WASO to end their bad romance with Woodside.

Sign the petition asking WASO to end the bad romance with Woodside today.

WASO has partnered with Woodside on events like “Become Ocean” about climate impacts on the sea – you can’t get much more blatant art-washing than that!

To make matters worst, Woodside CEO Meg O’Neill and Chair of the Board Richard Goyder are both on the board of WASO. 

Today we are launching a new report by Swinburne University researchers into fossil fuel sponsorship of the arts: Bad Romance: Coal, gas, and oil sponsorship in the Australian arts industry.

The findings are clear; fossil fuel sponsorships are as toxic for a brand as cigarette sponsorships were. Arts organisations are ditching the reputational risk in favour of partnerships that align with their values and those of artists and patrons. This is thanks to the growing momentum built by community campaigns, artists speaking out and the agitation of activists just like you.

The release of this report sends a message to organisations dragging their feet: fossil fuel sponsorships are out of step with the expectation of artists, activists and the community, and it’s time to end the bad romance.

The report finds that only 6% of major arts organisations still have sponsorships with fossil fuel companies – it’s time for them to follow the majority of arts organisations, or risk reputational damage for providing a platform for polluting companies like Woodside and Santos.

I love classical music, I grew up playing the oboe. WASO can choose to be on the right side of history, so all kids can grow up enjoying orchestras, but only if they cut all ties with dirty Woodside.

That’s why we are calling on the WASO to end its sponsorship deal with Woodside.

Join the chorus, sign the petition now. 

Sign the petition

Our report showed that the benefit to fossil fuel corporations far outweighs the benefit to arts organisations. Sponsorships from ethical businesses or government funding could easily replace the funding that arts organisations receive from fossil fuel sponsorships. But fossil fuel corporations would struggle to find other avenues to buy public support for their climate-wrecking projects.

Together with our fossil-free sponsorships pledge, we hope to build a symphony of support for ending fossil fuel sponsorships for good.

Lucy, for the whole 350 Australia team 

P.S. Read the full report Bad Romance: Coal, gas, and oil sponsorship in the Australian arts industry, and please share it with your network.

We are building a grassroots movement to stand up to the fossil fuel industry, and support a just transition from coal, oil and gas to a renewable-energy future for all.

Keep 350 Australia strong by chipping in right now:

Chip In Now

350 Australia acknowledges the Traditional Owners throughout Australia and recognises their continuing connection to the land, sea and community. We pay our respects to them and their cultures; and to their Elders past, present and emerging. There can be no climate justice without justice for First Nations people across the globe.

Authorised by Lucy Manne, 350 Australia, Level 1/52 Reservoir St, Surry Hills NSW 2010. ABN: 46 138 155 192. Correspondence in regard to any authorised material can be sent to [email protected].

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