>>> Update, 7 December 2022: Following a complaint by Adfree Cities over these ads, the ASA has launched an investigation into Shell for breaching the advertising code regarding misleading advertising and environmental claims. We hope the regulator will take swift action against Shell, since this type of greenwashing by energy companies is all too common and is delaying real action on climate change (see our full complaint for more detail).
Shell’s new adverts, made by agency Wunderman Thompson, show imagery of EV charging points, wind turbines and….. all the other usual blah blah blah.
The ads, spotted on Bristol billboards and online, are the latest attempt by Shell to push a falsely ‘green’ brand image. Despite still pushing major oil and gas expansion around the world, including the controversial new Jackdaw oil field in the North Sea, Shell’s ads overwhelmingly focus on clean energy provision – claiming they are #PoweringProgress and talking up EV charging and wind power projects.
Shell is one of the 10 most polluting companies in the world, and has been held liable in Dutch courts for enormous damage caused to the climate. Under Shell’s current plans, the energy giant would be spending just 1% – 1.25% of its revenue on green UK energy tech projects per year – not the impression it gives in its ads.
Adfree Cities have submitted a complaint against Shell’s ‘Cleaner Energy’ ads to the UK Advertising Standards Authority. If you’d like to do likewise, go to the ASA’s Make a complaint webpage, submit a photo of the ad from this blog or one you’ve spotted yourself, and say why you think this advert is misleading. Here’s some ideas and our full complaint – but make it personal to you. Your complaint doesn’t have to be long.
> If you like, you can also submit a complaint over BP’s ‘Backing Britain’ adverts.