Description

Who: Sydney Council, Australia.

What:

  • A motion to investigate how to ban fossil ads and sponsorships.
  • A motion calling on the federal government to compensate community groups to drop fossil fuel sponsors.

When: 22 August 2022 - ongoing


Sydney became the second major city in the world, after Amsterdam, to tackle advertising for unhealthy, high-emissions coal, petroleum and ‘natural’ gas. Ads in Sydney reach 2 million people per day, making it one of the largest ad networks in the world. Sydney’s move follows an open letter signed by more than 200 health organisations and professionals, asking for Fossil Ad Bans because of the devastating health and climate effects of burning coal, oil and gas.

A new motion is put forward in March 2023, calling on the federal government to compensate community groups to drop fossil fuel sponsors. Sydney will take a motion to the ALGA National General Assembly in June that calls for a national fund to help local groups end sponsorship agreements with coal, petroleum or gas companies.

 

Passed motion

City of Sydney councillors voted on Monday 22 August to prevent coal, oil and gas from being promoted on its properties and events. The motion, put forward by Deputy Mayor, Jess Scully stated; 

  1. the Lord Mayor be requested to:
    1. write to the Federal Minister for Communications, The Hon Michelle Rowland MP, to ask the Federal Government to pass national laws that restrict fossil fuel advertising; and
    2. write to the Minister for Digital Government and Minister for Customer Service, Victor Dominello requesting the NSW Government impose restrictions on fossil fuel advertising; and
  2. the Chief Executive Officer be requested to:
    1. investigate bringing forward the City’s net zero travel target in the City of Sydney’s Strategic Plan in light of the change of Federal Government; 
    2. investigate implementing restrictions on advertising for fossil fuels for any Council controlled signage or property, as well as a ban on accepting sponsorships from companies whose main business is the extraction or sale of coal, oil or gas;
    3. work with other councils, Local Government NSW and the Australian Local Government Association to encourage a consistent approach across local government to fossil fuel advertising; and
    4. ask City staff to undertake a review of City policies or strategies that may allow for the promotion of fossil fuels. 

 

New motion

The City of Sydney motion was passed with bipartisan support, and it calls on the Australian government to:

  1. Recognise local governments are on the front line of the climate transition and that climate related floods and bushfires have left many councils with huge damage to roads and other infrastructure.
  2. Recognise that thriving in the new economy requires communities to adapt to a changing climate, rapidly cut emissions, as well as educating local communities about the impacts and causes of climate change.
  3. Encourage low emissions consumption nationally through public information campaigns, Australian Consumer Law, the Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards Act 2012 (Cth) (GEMS Act) or other relevant Commonwealth powers.
  4. Open a fund to allow councils to sponsor community, education, sporting and cultural groups that currently take funding from the coal, petroleum or gas industry.
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