Expedia offsets carbon, Ford continues to perplex

Expedia offsets carbon, Ford continues to perplex
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In a similar vein as the recent announcement of BP‘s Target Neutral program, the online travel giant Expedia will be offering a similar carbon off-setting program in partnership with TerraPass, a carbon reduction program sponsored by the Ford Motor Company.

Of course, this post is less about flogging Expedia’s new program (which they should be commended for), than it is a segue into a post we have been meaning to do for a while now on TerraPass, the Ford Motor Company and the massive climate change spin machine, the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

It is befuddling to see a company like Ford, on one hand supporting major climate change causes like the TerraPass, while on the other hand continuing to support an organization like the CEI, whose most recent claim to fame was the production and distribution of the most offensive counter-climate change advertisements to date. For those not in the loop, I have included the infamous TV commercial (that ran in 14 US cities this spring) below.

And we’re not the only ones confused about this, check out this from the TerraPass people themselves on their frustration with Ford’s continued involvement with the CEI.

If Ford is serious about climate change, their words should match their actions. An old PR story that speaks to this reputation discrepency is as follows:

A CEO hired a PR guru. In their first meeting the CEO said,” I have a reputation for being an SOB, and I’m hiring you to improve my image.” “Well,” said the PR guru “First you’ll have to stop being an SOB.”

The moral of the story is that good reputations are hard earned. You won’t develop one if you don’t deserve it, no matter how good your PR guru is.

Here’s the video from the CEI, an organization that Ford Motor Company continues to support:

Expedia offsets carbon, Ford continues to perplex

Kevin is a contributor and strategic adviser to DeSmogBlog.

He runs the digital marketing agency Spake Media House. Named a “Green Hero” by Rolling Stone Magazine and one of the “Top 50 Tweeters” on climate change and environment issues, Kevin has appeared in major news media outlets around the world for his work on digital campaigning.

Kevin has been involved in the public policy arena in both the United States and Canada for more than a decade. For five years he was the managing editor of DeSmogBlog.com. In this role, Kevin’s research into the “climate denial industry” and the right-wing think tank networks was featured in news media articles around the world. He is most well known for his ground-breaking research into David and Charles Koch’s massive financial investments in the Republican and tea party networks.

Kevin is the first person to be designated a “Certified Expert” on the political and community organizing platform NationBuilder.

Prior to DeSmogBlog, Kevin worked in various political and government roles. He was Senior Advisor to the Minister of State for Multiculturalism and a Special Assistant to the Minister of State for Asia Pacific, Foreign Affairs for the Government of Canada. Kevin also worked in various roles in the British Columbia provincial government in the Office of the Premier and the Ministry of Health.

In 2008 Kevin co-founded a groundbreaking new online election tool called Vote for Environment which was later nominated for a World Summit Award in recognition of the world’s best e-Content and innovative ICT applications.

Kevin moved to Washington, DC in 2010 where he worked for two years as the Director of Online Strategy for Greenpeace USA and has since returned to his hometown of Vancouver, Canada.

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