“Car advertising on the London Underground and rail network should be banned”

Image: Ivan Mateev/Shutterstock

Climate activists have called on London Underground and rail network operators to remove ads promoting cars to encourage more people to choose more sustainable modes of transport.

Climate Charity Possible, think tank New Weather Institute and activist network Adfree Cities wrote a joint letter to business leaders calling the ads “an extraordinary act of self-sabotage” against public transit.

Leo Murrey, Possible’s co-director, said: “It is clear that advertising cars undermines the interests of a public transport network like TfL.

“In 2019, to reflect the requirements of the Mayor’s London Food Strategy, TfL amended its advertising guidelines to ban junk food advertising to reduce obesity and encourage healthier food purchases.

“If it has been determined that this advertising causes enough harm to public health to merit a full ban from TfL’s estate, then surely it is time that high-carbon advertising was subject to the same logic.”

A TfL spokesman told ELN: “We are reviewing the letter in relation to climate concerns and publicity across our network. We continue to adhere to the guidance of the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), which we know currently takes into account the role of advertising in relation to the environment.

“We will of course ensure that all advertisements on the TfL network comply with any further guidance that the ASA issues on the matter.”

ELN has reached out to Rail Network for comment.

If you liked this story, you can sign up for our weekly email Energy Live News – and if you are interested in learning more about the journey to net zero by 2050, you can also subscribe to future net zero Newsletter.

London Herald