Many thanks to our colleague Barry Seddon at indefilms.net for this short film.
Dame Vivienne Westwood’s son Joe Corré delivered an Open Letter on Wednesday morning to the World Sailing HQ in Paddington. He was accompanied by 6ft Ocean animals including a dolphin, penguin, seal and seagull, all with INEOS plastic bags over their heads.
Talk Fracking boss Joe Corré says: “If INEOS get their way and fulfil their ambition to frack the length and breadth of the UK, they will be making a vast contribution to the already growing pile of cheap plastics in the world today. INEOS have a horrendous environmental track record in Europe and have been responsible for toxic chemicals, leaks, fires and explosions that have endangered workers, communities and the environment. Now they plan to bring those dangers to hundreds of communities across the UK, just to make more plastics that we don’t want. World Sailing entertaining the greenwasher INEOS as a sponsor of the America’s Cup entrant Team UK smacks of total hypocrisy. They must make a stand on behalf of our Oceans, drowning in plastic. Sir Ben Ainslie should be ashamed of himself taking US$153 million of Jim Ratcliffe’s dirty money to enter the America’s Cup. Ben Ainslie turning a blind eye to what INEOS really are doesn’t cut it”.
The Open Letter was composed by Jennifer Robinson, Human Rights Barrister of Doughty Street Chambers.
Kendall Harris, Legal Counsel for World Sailing read a response to the Open Letter.
See the full Open Letter at www.BanINEOSFromAmericasCup2021.com
In the Open Letter, Ms. Robinson says: “It is with grave concern and disappointment that we have witnessed World Sailing’s ongoing silence and complicity in relation to INEOS Team UK, an America’s Cup 2021 entrant sponsored by a company known for its environmentally destructive practices and ongoing assault on the democratic right to protest”.
“Mr Andersen, we know that you are already all too aware of the pressing issues posed by the plastic contamination of our oceans. In June this year, World Sailing joined the Clean Seas Campaign, partnering with the International Olympic Committee and UN Environment to “beat plastic pollution”.
“In the case of INEOS, its fracking production in the UK and USA to provide cheap feedstocks (ethane, propane) for plastic production. INEOS is one of Europe’s biggest producers of disposable plastic”.
The World Sailing Code of Ethics promises to protect the environment at its events, and World Sailing have joined the ‘Clean Seas Campaign’ to help clean up plastic pollution. But INEOS wants to frack in the UK in order to produce more ocean polluting petro-chemical plastics.
The letter calls for World Sailing to disassociate itself from Sir Ben Ainslie’s UK sailing team which is sponsored by INEOS.
Ms. Robinson writes: “Your decision to permit the participation of any team sponsored by INEOS undermine’s World Sailing’s commitments to respecting and safeguarding our environment … commitments … World Sailing has made consistently clear across each of its governing documents, including most recently in the Sustainability Agenda 2030”.
“The ongoing presence of INEOS Team UK in World Sailing’s headline event single-handedly shatters these endeavours, bringing both World Sailing, and yourself, into disrepute”.
Ms. Robinson asks World Sailing to adopt an “ethical and environmentally friendly sponsorship policy” ruling out companies like INEOS whose core business exacerbates … climate change and human rights abuse”.
The World Sailing action comes at the same time that the National Teachers Union have just passed a motion strongly condemning INEOS’S involvement in the Daily Mile and will be contacting schools to raise awareness of INEOS to head teachers.
Delphine Lévi Alvarès, European coordinator of ‘Break Free From Plastic’ says: “The #breakfreefromplastic movement brings nearly 1,300 organisations around the world together to fight plastic pollution. INEOS are fuelling the plastics expansion with cheap plastics that will pollute our environment, but together we can put a stop to their polluting practices. Zero waste cities on the front line of the fight against plastic pollution and strong policy action against single-use plastics can reverse the tide for a clean future!”
Wenonah Hauter, Executive Director and Founder of Food & Water Watch says: “Plastic production wreaks havoc on people and the planet—from the fracking wells and pipelines in Pennsylvania to the beaches and oceans across the globe that are polluted by plastic manufactured in Scotland and elsewhere. We are literally drowning In plastic, and companies like Ineos are making billions with the destruction of our climate and oceans. It is time to unite and stop them once and for all.”
The World Sailing action comes at the same time that the National Teachers Union have passed a motion to oppose INEOS sponsorship of The Daily Mile – which promotes getting children out of the classroom for fifteen minutes everyday to run or job.
Co-signatories include Greenpeace UK, Friends of the Earth Ireland, #BreakFreeFromPlastic, Food & Water Watch/Europe, the Centre for Environmental Law, Aberdeen Climate Action, Frack Free United, Oil Change International, Earthworks, and Mission LifeForce.
Others to sign include Dame Vivienne Westwood, Joe Corré, the Editor in Chief of the International Journal of Human Rights, Professor Peter Strachan, Professor of Energy Policy at Robert Gordon University at Aberdeen Business School, Prof. Robert Howarth, Professor of Ecology and Environmental Biology, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, and Cross Party Frack Free.
The letter delivery will also mark the Global Gasdown Frackdown Day of Action on October 13th.