illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on the Guardian or enjoy below:
🗞️ Driving the news: Recordings and reports reveal that the Propane Education & Research Council (Perc), a U.S. lobbying group, has been marketing propane as renewable or "clean energy," despite its fossil fuel origins
• Perc's board members have acknowledged the inaccuracy of this characterization in a recorded meeting, as they strategized to align propane with the perception of being environmentally friendly.
🔭 The context: Perc has spent nearly $30m on advertisements over two years, promoting propane as clean and renewable, despite it being primarily a by-product of natural gas and crude oil refining
• The group's internal discussions and marketing strategies have been focused on reshaping propane's image, particularly among younger, climate-conscious demographics
🌍 Why it matters for the planet: Misrepresenting propane as a renewable or clean energy source contributes to greenwashing, misleading the public and policymakers about its environmental impact
• This mischaracterization could hinder efforts to transition to truly renewable and low-emission energy sources necessary for mitigating climate change.
⏭️ What's next: As scrutiny over fossil fuel greenwashing increases, the propane industry’s marketing efforts face challenges in balancing commercial interests with accurate environmental messaging
• Perc plans to continue rebranding propane in 2024, but must navigate growing awareness and skepticism about fossil fuel impacts.
💬 One quote: “We’re trying to be part of the solution,” said Erin Hatcher, Perc’s senior vice-president of communications and marketing, despite the scientific consensus that addressing climate change involves reducing fossil fuel reliance
📈 One stat: Perc’s advertising spending increased over 17-fold from 2021 to 2022-23, from $1.7m to nearly $30m, targeting various media outlets and audiences.
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