Sydney Considers a Ban on Advertising Promoting Fossil Fuels

Image: Ivan Tsaregorodtsev

Advertising that promotes fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and gas could soon be a thing of the past in Sydney, Australia where the government is considering banning ads from buildings and public spaces.

This possible move follows an open letter from more than 200 health professionals and organizations, that called on the bans citing the health and climate effects of burning coal, oil, and gas.

Deputy Lord Mayor Jess Scully said: “I am proud to be leading a motion that would see a blanket ban on fossil fuels advertising.


“The motion asks council to advocate for the state and federal governments to restrict the advertising of fossil fuels similarly to the federal ban on tobacco advertising in 1992.”

She said the strong influence held by fossil fuel companies, which spends millions on advertising each year, contributed to insufficient action taken on climate change.

“This is about drawing a line in the sand, saying no more, we see through this whitewashing, we see through the marketing spin,” Cr Scully said.

Scully will move a motion at Monday’s council meeting requesting an investigation into restricting fossil fuel ads and sponsorship deals.


“Air pollution from burning fossil fuels takes 8.7 million lives prematurely each year — worse than tobacco,” Cr Scully’s motion stated.

Among those ads targeted could be cars, and gas-heated swimming pools.

“People don’t realize how many fossil fuel messages there are in their day-to-day lives,” Scully said.

Comms Declare founder Belinda Noble added that, “Australia was a world leader in stopping tobacco advertising and sponsorships and now we are poised to become leaders in curtailing the promotion of toxic, high emissions fossil fuels.

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