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Designboom: Greenpeace drowns rugby world cup 2023 arena in crude oil (cont'd)


Greenpeace France and production company Studio Birthplace, represented by Park Village in the UK, created and released their campaign video against fossil fuel sponsorship in the Rugby World Cup 2023. The sporting event is sponsored by French fuel and energy giant TotalEnergies, and in the animated video named ‘TotalPollution: A Dirty Game’, Studio Birthplace and Greenpeace France illustrate the amount of crude oil that the global fossil fuel industry, TotalEnergies included, collectively produces in 3 hours and 37 minutes.

‘That’s more than six and a half stadiums worth of oil every 24 hours,’ the team states. As Greenpeace France reports, the Rugby World Cup Limited even tried to block the release of the video with a cease and desist letter sent to Greenpeace International on Tuesday, August 29th, 2023, the day before the video was due to go public. The team adds that fuel and energy companies like TotalEnergies sponsor events like the Rugby World Cup to distract everyone from their climate destruction.

‘Integrity, passion, solidarity, discipline and respect – those are rugby values. But fossil fuel companies like TotalEnergies piggyback those values by sponsoring popular sports events like the Rugby World Cup, to distract everyone from their climate destruction. Meanwhile, fossil fuel companies won’t stop extracting fossil fuels – even though they know it’s jeopardizing a livable future for us all – because they like the record-breaking profits they’re making,’ says Edina Ifticene, Campaigner at Greenpeace France.


The short animated film by Studio Birthplace, represented by Park Village in the UK, and in collaboration with Greenpeace France shows crude oil flooding the Stade De France, the stadium in Paris where the first match between France and the New Zealand All Blacks will take place on September 8th, 2023. It features the voice-overs from Irish comedian and actor Seán Burke and French comedian and radio columnist Guillaume Meurice.

As part of calling out TotalEnergies, one of the sponsors of the Rugby World Cup 2023, the animated video also shows oil spilling out of the company’s logos dotted around the stadium, knocking over the rugby players and fans in their seats. The last 10 seconds of the video feature footage of real climate destruction caused both directly and indirectly by the fossil fuel industry.

Greenpeace France states that TotalEnergies’ Chairman and CEO Patrick Pouyanné said ‘integrity, passion, solidarity, discipline and respect are key features of this sport, and they match our company’s values’ when its sponsorship for the Rugby World Cup 2023 was announced. A Greenpeace Central and Eastern Europe report released last week, which analyzed the 2022 annual reports of six global fossil fuel majors and six European oil and gas companies, revealed that 0.3% of their combined energy production came from renewable power.

Greenpeace France shares that the report documents that 99% of TotalEnergies’ energy production last year which came from fossil fuels, meaning only 1% came from genuinely renewable sources. ‘The fossil-fuelled climate crisis has already started to negatively impact rugby itself,’ says Edina Ifticene.

A typhoon disrupted the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan, and major Pacific Island rugby nations are threatened by rising sea levels. And some of France’s host cities have decided to keep TotalEnergies out of their fan zones. Everyone is waking up to the fact that there is no place for fossil fuels, not in rugby, or anywhere else. We will not be stopped from calling out the truth,’ Edina Ifticene adds.

Written by: Matthew Burgos

Source: Designboom

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