On the heels of congressional Democrats calling the heads of fossil fuel companies and industry lobbying groups to testify about their role in spreading climate disinformation, campaigners published a report Tuesday exposing the contributions of major advertising and public relations firms.\r\n\r\n\u0022There is no room for ad and PR professionals to continue promoting companies that are doing so much damage to our future.\u0022\r\n—Duncan Meisel, Clean Creatives\r\n\r\nThe aim of Clean Creatives\u0026#039; report, as its introduction explains, was to \u0022document the many known relationships between PR, advertising, and other creative agencies and fossil fuel companies that are responsible for climate change, and compare holding company pledges for climate action with their work for polluting clients.\u0022\r\n\r\nUnveiled last year by the nonprofit Fossil Free Media, the Clean Creatives campaign pressures ad and PR agencies to ditch clients fueling the climate emergency.\r\n\r\n\u0022Fossil fuel companies are the biggest polluters, the biggest greenwashers, and the biggest opponents of life-saving climate action. There is no room for ad and PR professionals to continue promoting companies that are doing so much damage to our future,\u0022 said Clean Creatives director Duncan Meisel in a statement about the report, entitled The F-List 2021.\r\n\r\n\u0022The most important step any agency can take to address the climate crisis is to rule out working with fossil fuel companies,\u0022 Meisel added. \u0022We need creatives and communications experts to bring their full energy towards ending this crisis, not extending it.\u0022\r\n\r\nThe report focuses on the work of 90 agencies across three different regions—Australia, Europe, and North America—and notes that \u0022fossil fuel industry clients include the full range of corporations involved in the business of extracting, transporting, refining, and selling fossil fuels, their trade associations, and front groups representing their interests.\u0022\r\n\r\nIn the United States, the fossil fuel companies have \u0022expanded their efforts to oppose and water down major climate legislation under the Biden administration,\u0022 the report says. In Europe, they face a \u0022stricter regulatory environment targeting their products, and a tightening space for their advertisements,\u0022 but \u0022these measures have not stopped fossil interests—both in the business of extraction, and power generation—from attacking major proposals for climate action.\u0022\r\n\r\nIn Australia, one of the world\u0026#039;s top exporters of gas and coal, \u0022the influence of fossil fuel companies goes all the way to the top,\u0022 the report points out, \u0022with Prime Minister Scott Morrison famously brandishing a lump of coal in Parliament and holidaying in Hawaii as the country faced catastrophic bushfires.\u0022\r\n\r\nBelinda Noble, founder of Comms Declare, which co-authored the report, explained that \u0022Australia is unique because three prime ministers have lost their jobs for trying to limit greenhouse gases.\u0022\r\n\r\n\u0022With corporate giants continuing to pump tens of millions into sponsorships, PR, lobbying, and marketing every year,\u0022 she added, \u0022it\u0026#039;s no wonder Australia has no net-zero commitment and is playing a wrecking role in international climate negotiations.\u0022\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nThe report notes how the industry-friendly concept of net-zero emissions \u0022has rapidly proliferated through corporate communications\u0022 since the Paris agreement was signed in 2015, and \u0022the term has taken on even greater importance\u0022 going into this year\u0026#039;s COP 26 summit in Glasgow, Scotland.\r\n\r\nDefining what \u0022net-zero\u0022 is and isn\u0026#039;t \u0022will need to be a central focus of advertising and PR trade associations, regulators, and internal ethics watchdogs for agencies with fossil fuel clients,\u0022 the report says, warning of how it could be used for \u0022a growing number of fossil fuel PR and ad campaigns, in a large and widespread greenwashing effort towards the end of 2021.\u0022\r\n\r\nThe report features a chart showing which firms serve which fossil fuel clients, noting when an ad or PR agency is tied to a holding company. It also highlights conflicts between the polluter clients and sustainability pledges of major holding companies—WPP, Interpublic, Dentsu, Publicis, and Omnicom.\r\n\r\nThere are also three case studies, detailing:\r\n\r\n\r\n\tEdelman\u0026#039;s work for ExxonMobil\u0026#039;s \u0022Exxchange\u0022 platform;\r\n\tProject Cesar, \u0022an operation created by the firm Crosby Textor to astroturf support for coal projects, and oppose measures to address climate change in Australia,\u0022 revealed by The Guardian in 2019; and\r\n\tthe European Union\u0026#039;s greenwash of blue hydrogen.\r\n\r\n\r\n\u0022Exxon has become one of the top spenders on climate issues on Facebook, frequently sharing misleading statistics about proposed climate action, and encouraging users to \u0026#039;take action\u0026#039; to stop them on their website Exxon Exxchange,\u0022 the report says, highlighting the key role of social media giants in the dissemination of climate disinformation.\u0026nbsp;\r\n\r\nExxonMobil has faced heightened scrutiny for its efforts to influence U.S. politics in the wake of an exposé published earlier this summer. CEO Darren Woods is among those invited to appear before the U.S. House Oversight and Reform Committee next month for a hearing reminiscent of the 1990s congressional investigations into Big Tobacco.\r\n\r\nIf Woods—along with BP America CEO David Lawler, Chevron CEO Michael Wirth, Shell president Gretchen Watkins, American Petroleum Institute (API) president Mike Sommers, and U.S. Chamber of Commerce president and CEO Suzanne Clark—refuses to testify or turn over materials to the House panel, Democrats may issue subpoenas.