The Daily Express is treating the planet hatefully – Find better places to advertise

The Daily Express is fuelling people to hate carbon reduction. That puts doubt into people’s minds – doubt that the planet can ill afford. Encourage advertisers to spend their money in better ways and change these narratives that feed the climate crisis.

The Problem

The vast majority of us want to live in a safe and sustainable world – and therefore to rapidly counter the climate crisis.

So it’s sad to see The Daily Express, one of the UK’s largest newspapers, using their platforms to stir up resentment towards carbon reduction efforts.

For whatever reason, the paper seems to have embarked on a crusade against ‘net zero’, with a string of sensationalist headlines portraying the term as a malicious threat. Just to pick a few of the dozens and dozens of examples:

–  Mad rush for Net Zero makes us a laughing stock around the world, says Esther McVey

–  Medieval net zero policies will take the UK back to the dark ages, warns Lord Frost

–  Drive for Net Zero is economic suicide, says Esther Krakue

This is in spite of the fact that even the paper’s owners, Reach PLC, have made extensive public commitments to protecting the environment, including by cutting carbon. They proudly (and laudably) announce being on a ‘journey to Net Carbon Zero, [with] targets and metrics’ and ‘a member of the Ad NetZero initiative’.

Whatever the reason for the Express’s anti-net-zero rhetoric, this kind of blanket, misleading, bogeyman coverage sows seeds of public anger and mistrust, muddies the waters about how climate change works and directly contributes to climate denial.

If you’ve ever wondered why people can be so hostile to the idea of protecting the environment (even when it seems clear it would be to their own benefit), misinformational stories like these have a big part to play.

The Express’s attacks on attempts to reduce carbon emissions (net zero) are directly at odds with the stated aims of the paper’s owners – and of many of the companies who fund the Express through their advertising budgets.

For example, look at some of the brands paying to feature in the Express this very week. Each of them has made public statements about their own efforts to reach net zero:


 ‘We were the first business to set a zero carbon goal…Our goal [is] to be net zero from farm to fork by 2050’ 

Read more >


Hyundai is in progress to achieve carbon neutrality by 2045…We aim to be carbon neutral from production to operation

Read more >


We believe we have an obligation to stop climate change, and reducing carbon emission to zero will have a big impact. We want to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2040’

Read more >


Škoda Auto is forging ahead with decarbonising the company. All three Czech plants will be operating with net-zero carbon emissions by 2030’

Read more >

And yet these advertisers are – probably without even realising it – spending money supporting stories that seek to undermine these stated goals.

But it doesn’t have to stay like this.

What you can do about it

If you’re tired of climate change narratives taking so long to shift, angered by media outlets spreading climate misinformation, or just plain exasperated by the inefficiency of companies trying to promote a planet-positive agenda with one hand whilst funding climate denial with the other, then here’s a simple way you can make a difference.

Encourage advertisers to take their money elsewhere!

It’s easy to do:

–  Grab a screenshot from a Daily Express misinformation story that includes a brand advertisement (Check out the list of articles below that we’ve put together for you)

–  Write a polite message to the company to let them know they are funding this (You can use our messaging guide if you’re not sure what to say) 

–  Inform the brand (on social media, via email or a letter), so they can #StopFundingHeat 

It’s simple but it works!

You’ll often see these companies make a change to where they’re spending their money once they notice what’s happening. And that in turn can and does make a difference to media narratives.

We know our media can do better. Let’s make it unprofitable for The Daily Express and other papers to run stories like this – by persuading advertisers to pull their support from publications that spread climate misinformation.

The Stop Funding Heat Team