Sponsorship protests escalate as Dow & BP targeted in the same day
The organisers of the campaign to name and shame the worst Olympic sponsor have announced preliminary voting results that show mining company Rio Tinto in the lead with  BP in second place and Dow Chemical third. People have voted in the thousands on the Greenwash Gold website and final results will be announced and medals awarded just before the start of the games.
Protests against Olympic sponsors have been intensifying, protests against Dow and BP taking place on the same day yesterday. At the Camden Roundhouse, an uninvited theatre group took the stage before the BP-sponsored performance of Comedy of Errors took place, while in Trafalgar Square, Drop Dow Now took part in an international protest coordinated with groups in India, US and Canada against the involvement of Dow Chemical in the games.
Richard Solly of London Mining Network said: “Rio Tinto has provided nearly all the metals for the Olympic Medals from mines in Utah where local residents have accused the company of creating so much pollution that it is contributing to premature deaths and respiratory diseases. You can’t pretend to have ‘the greenest games ever’ when you’re working with such a dirty and disreputable company like Rio Tinto.”
Emily Coats from the UK Tar sands Network said: “BP has just launched another shiny advertising campaign to continue to obscure from the public its devastating operations in the Gulf of Mexico, Alberta tar sands and pristine Arctic. With one month still to go before the Olympics we’re hoping to see this world-class climate criminal surge into the lead and win the Greenwash Gold medal.”
Colin Toogood of the Bhopal Medical Appeal said: “Dow Chemical have been refusing to accept that their wholly-owned subsidiary, the Union Carbide Corporation, is wanted on the criminal charges of culpable homicide for the Bhopal Gas Disaster. We cannot understand why the Olympic organisers continue to defend Dow Chemical when these are the facts.”
Meredith Alexander, the ex Olympics ‘ethics tsar’ who resigned over controversies surrounding Olympic sponsorship said: “The London Olympics belongs to all of us; athletes, spectators and Londoners alike. That’s why it is so disappointing that Lord Coe is ignoring people’s concerns about unethical Olympic sponsors. He does not want to hear about BP’s investment in the most polluting form of oil, the environmental problems that come with Rio Tinto’s medals or the fact that Dow Chemical is the company now responsible for the Bhopal tragedy.
For more information/comment, contact
Richard Solly, London Mining Network contact@londonminingnetwork.org, 07929 023 214
Colin Toogood, Bhopal Medical Appeal, ColinToogood@bhopal.org, 07798 845074
Emily Coats, UK Tar Sands Network info@no-tar-sands.org, 07807095669
You can see the Greenwash Gold campaign at www.greenwashgold.org
You can see the Greenwash Gold videos at www.youtube.com/greenwashgold
The ’emotional’ new ad campaign from BP aims to highlight the work from behind the scenes staff such as road sweepers, tea ladies and groundsmen. see http://www.marketingweek.co.uk/sectors/sport/bp-changes-gear-of-olympic-activity/4002418.article
More information about the BP intervention at the Roundhouse can be found here http://bp-or-not-bp.org/news/roundhouse/ and a video of the performance can be seen here http://youtu.be/KL-x4bD2AXI
More information about the Drop Dow Now protest can be found at http://dropdownow.org/2012/06/27/global-solidarity-action-reflects-global-outrage-at-dows-olympic-sponsorhip/