A Holiday Wish for Coke: Stop fueling the climate crisis
by Kate Melges
November 24, 2021
In the spirit of fighting back against corporate greed during the holidays, demand Coke reduce its single-use plastic to help tackle the climate crisis.
Coca-Cola’s infamous greenwashing…ahem…I mean…*holiday ad* campaign just launched. It’s the time of the year where Coke works harder than Santa’s elves to spin its polluting brand into a socially conscious company that cares deeply about community and planet. Ho-Ho-Ho, the greenwashing is almost laughable, right?
This year is no different. Just a month ago, Coca-Cola was named the world’s worst plastic polluter for the fourth year running. Yet you wouldn’t know it by Coke’s new ad. The nostalgic messaging masterfully attempts to greenwash a customer into believing that drinking a Coke will make you feel the way that watching the video did: hopeful for the holidays — instead of wondering if Coke ever gets off the naughty list for pumping out more and more plastic bottles made from fossil fuels.
But really is it a surprise? This company has used the holidays to brainwash customers for generations into thinking refillable glass bottles are for polar bears, plastic bottles are for people. All for a greedy CEO to get richer and richer by profiting off the plastic pollution crisis.
As a plastic pollution activist, I know that these holiday ads don’t fool you. Coca-Cola will do and say anything to continue business as usual. Last year, Coke infamously refused to ditch plastic bottles arguing its customers still want to buy them. However, the fossil fuel industry — not customers — want Coca-Cola to keep using plastic because their profits depend on it.
In the spirit of Coca-Cola using the polar bear to sell more and more Coke bottles during the holidays, we are using Coke’s polar bear imagery — the classical symbol of the climate movement at Greenpeace — to call Coke’s CEO. It’s time to tell the real story behind how Big Brands, like Coca-Cola, are working hand in hand with the fossil fuel industry to push petrochemical production — ensuring both industries stay filthy rich until the last drop of oil is pumped from the ground.
This symbiotic relationship between Coca-Cola and Big Oil makes a holiday ad built around a family of polar bears or a family enjoying a Coke Classic even more messed up — when in reality plastic and petrochemical production is poisoning our planet, harming Black, Brown, Indigenous, and low-income communities living in fenceline communities, and fueling the climate crisis that is melting our polar ice caps — including the North Pole.
That’s why this holiday season we need to be LOUDER than ever before to call out Coca-Cola’s greenwashing and its greedy CEO for making no progress on reducing single-use plastics or investing in reuse and refill.
Happy holidays! Together, let’s break free from plastics and fossil fuels.