Antonio Guterres
Antonio Guterres

PR helps pave the highway to climate hell, according to United Nations secretary Antonio Guterres.

In his notable “Moment of Truth” speech about the climate crisis made June 5 at the American Museum of Natural History, Guteeres accused PR firms and ad agencies of enabling the fossil fuels industry in planetary destruction.

“Many in the fossil fuel industry have shamelessly greenwashed, even as they sought to delay climate action—with lobbying, legal threats and massive ad campaigns," he said. “They have been aided and abetted by advertising and PR companies—Mad Men—remember the TV series—fueling the madness.”

He called on PR firms and ad agencies to drop fossil fuels clients, and stop taking new ones. “Fossil fuels are not only poisoning our planet—they’re toxic for your brand,” Guteeres added.

The former prime minister of Portugal noted that some of the brightest and most creative minds in the communications business are mobilizing around the battle to combat climate change.

“They are gravitating towards companies that are fighting for our planet—not trashing it,” he said.

PR firms and ad agencies with fossil fuels clients have decisions to make.

Do they want to be on the right side of history and work for a sustainable future, or do they remain on the payrolls of those responsible for climate chaos?

Support Ukrainian refugees… Volunteers Tbilisi, which provides food, medicine and temporary housing to the 160K Ukrainians who have fled to Georgia, is looking for pro-bono PR support.

The promotional push is timed to buttress a fundraising program to benefit Ukrainian refugee women and their kids.

VT is looking for firms to spread the word about its work and to generate awareness of the refugee crisis.

Marina Belkina, who handles media, partnerships and fundraising activities, can be reached at [email protected].

Excellent Elon… SpaceX chief Elon Musk, who is not exactly the classiest guy in the world, congratulated Boeing on the first successful manned launch of its Starliner capsule on June 5.

SpaceX president/COO Gwynn Shotwell went a bit further. Shotwell wrote on the X platform: “Congratulations to @NASA, @BoeingSpace and @ULAlaunch on this morning’s launch to the @space-station and Godspeed to Butch [Wilmore] and Suni [Williams] and Starliner on your flight.”

SpaceX has been sending people into space for years. The launch last week was Boeing’s third attempt to send crews into space. Wilmore and Williams are expected to return for a landing in White Sands, NM, on June 14.

Will Elon welcome them back to Earth?