Advertised Emissions

Advertised Emissions – starting to measure the impact of advertising
Purpose Disruptors
DKK 3,734,286
Programme Area
Sustainable Behaviour

Roughly 70 pct. [1] of global greenhouse gases are directly related to household consumption, and a primary goal of the advertising industry is often to increase that very consumption. As an annual USD 600bn industry, most people on the planet are touched and influenced by advertising, e.g. on their phones, TVs, radios and computers. At present, the advertising industry takes very little responsibility for its role in driving unsustainable levels of consumption in many countries.

Purpose Disruptors address this issue, aiming to create systemic change within the advertising industry. Their big vision is to “reshape the advertising and marketing communications industry to only promote attitudes, lifestyles, behaviours and brands aligned with a net zero world by 2030”.

At COP26 in November 2021, Purpose Disruptors launched the Advertised Emissions Report. Borrowing from the idea of Financed Emissions, already established within the finance industry, "Advertised Emissions" is offered as an idea and methodology to help the advertising industry measure and reduce the climate impact resulting from the uplift in sales generated by advertising.

To illustrate how the concept works, the report includes new research on the extent of advertised emissions in the UK and finds that this number is around 186 times bigger than the operational emissions of the UK advertising industry, and that the advertising industry is adding an extra 28 pct. to the annual carbon footprint of every single person in UK. This methodology will be further tested and refined during the grant period with KR Foundation.

Purpose Disruptors
Purpose Disruptors is a community-based non-profit organisation in the UK, established in February 2020. Their vision is for advertising and marketing communications industry to only work on promoting brands, behaviours and lifestyles that are compatible with a 1.5-degree world.