“It’s Been Difficult To Watch”: Former Wallabies Captain David Pocock Calls Out Santos’ Rugby Australia Sponsorship

“It’s Been Difficult To Watch”: Former Wallabies Captain David Pocock Calls Out Santos’ Rugby Australia Sponsorship
B&T Magazine
Edited by B&T Magazine



Among calls for advertising agencies to stop working with fossil fuel producing clients, a former Rugby Australia captain has called out a partnership between Santos and the Wallabies.

David Pocock, a former Wallabies captain who is known for his work regarding climate change action, has criticised Santos’ sponsorship of the Wallabies.

As reported by The Guardian, Pocock said “I was always proud to represent my country. As a rugby player, that’s what you dream of. It’s been difficult to watch a partnership emerge with Santos.”

“I really think fossil fuel sponsorship is the new cigarette sponsorship, where they are advertising a product that we now know is destroying our home planet and our futures.”

Santos is a South Australian based oil and gas producer, who in October extended its relationship with the Wallabies, coming on board as a ‘major partner’.

The three year partnership will mean, for one, that the Santos logo will appear on the Wallabies’ logo.

It is not the first time Santos has sponsored the sport, with sponsorships for state teams including the Queensland Reds, NSW Waratahs, Western Force, Buildcorp Wallarooes, and the Australian women’s rugby sevens team.

At the time, Rugby Australia CEO Andy Marinos said, “we are excited to expand our association with Santos following our partnership with the Buildcorp Wallaroos and Australian Women’s Sevens side, where we have enjoyed a terrific relationship to date. Thank you to Kevin Gallagher and his team – we are delighted to integrate you further into the Rugby Australia family.”

Pocock’s criticism of the partnership comes with the backdrop of the UN’s climate change summit in Glasgow, called COP26.

Australia has already been criticised by politicians for including a stand from Santos in its pavilion at the conference. The display focused on Santos’ carbon capture development at Moomba in SA.

According to SBS, the display was criticised by former Liberal Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who was present at the climate summit.

Turnbull told reporters, “look at the Australian stand – you’ve got a gas company highlighted apparently at the insistence of the Energy Minister, who thinks that our energy policy should be all about burning gas.”

“The whole object is to stop burning fossil fuels.”

The Climate Change Performance Index gave Australia a score of zero and ranked it last place in its climate policy rating table in a report released during COP26.

Featured Image: Facebook/Rugby Australia. 




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