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THE Southbank Centre and British Film Institute (BFI) in London announced today they will end sponsorship from oil and gas giant Shell this year following pressure from campaigners.
The latest decision means that the whole South Bank area, where Shell UK’s headquarters is also located, will be free of oil sponsorship after the National Theatre also cut ties in October.
Culture Unstained co-director Dr Chris Garrard said: “From its HQ on the South Bank, Shell has pursued a business plan that has trampled indigenous peoples’ rights and pushed the world deeper into climate crisis while sponsoring its cultural neighbours in a cynical attempt to deflect attention from the damage it was causing.
“But with mounting pressure from artists, workers and the public these partnerships have stopped helping Shell launder its image and instead shone a spotlight on its climate crashing activities.
“Until it commits to leaving fossil fuels in the ground this decade, Shell will be standing in the way of the zero-carbon transition we urgently need and should not be welcomed into our arts institutions.”
Leading musician Mark Padmore welcomed the decision and said: “We all need to examine our way of life and the implications of our actions, as we respond to the growing climate emergency.
“Making beautiful music does not excuse us from seeking to understand how our work is funded and asking questions about the kind of unsustainable businesses those partnerships might promote.”
The British Museum, National Portrait Gallery, Science Museum Group and Royal Opera House continue to face intensifying opposition to sponsorship deals amid the climate emergency.
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