All images via ACT Responsible.
Like it or not, we’re bombarded with advertisements from companies encouraging us to purchase the latest and greatest products they have to offer each and everyday. Slick magazine ads and TV commercials feature great photography, memorable taglines, models and more to lead us into temptation.
More recently, some of that advertising space has been filled with a different kind of message created by ad agencies who’ve teamed up with environmental groups, government and others to ask us to buy into something else: the protection of the planet. Whether or not you think these ads make us think and act differently, one thing’s for sure – it’s nice to see some socially responsible ads out there! Read on, and you’ll discover 20 awesomely creative environmental ads from around the world.
To see larger resolution images, click on the campaign name link or name of the ad.
1. Face for Green Korea United
Agency: Daehong Communications
Campaign Name: Rescue us
Tagline: We are drowning. Rescue us from global warming.
Produced in South Korea.
A powerful ad showing that rising sea levels directly impact humans. The companion ad in this campaign depicts an island in the shape of a hand, slowly being overtaken by the sea.
2. Swimming Pool for Regional Environmental Awareness
Agency: Naga DDB Malaysia
Produced in Malaysia.
Swimming pool is a really cool ad where a city’s skyline is completely immersed in water. The writing on the wall: “Don’t let this be our future. Save our rainforest, stop global warming.”
3. Industrial Pollution for China Environmental Protection Foundation
Campaign Name: Shan Shui
Produced in China.
A familiar style of Chinese painting called “Shan Shui” – literally “mountain-water” – where artists depict spectacular natural vistas for viewers’ admiration is updated for the reality of the 21st century; a closer inspection of Industrial Revolution reveals “mountains” of high-rise buildings, endless hydro towers and a set of highways. The set of three ads also includes beautiful “paintings” of Global Warming and Automotive Pollution.
4. Lady for Evergreen
Campaign Name: Be the root
Tagline: Be the root. Nature in the city begins with all of us. The harder you try, the more it will thrive. We need your help.
Agency: ZiG Inc.
Produced in Canada.
Putting down your roots has new meaning in this ad that urges us to bring nature back to the city.
5. Green Song for MTV
Agency: 180 Amsterdam
Produced in the Netherlands
A catchy tune and colourful graphics makes this a memorable ad for the MTV generation.
6. Ice for WWF
Campaign Name: Light On
Tagline: When you leave the light on, you are not the only one who pays.
Agency: Ogilvy & Mather
Produced in the Ukraine.
This is a cool series of three ads where nature’s flora and fauna are represented in wallpaper you might find in a child’s bedroom. Ice features cute polar bears and penguins floating on small ice floes.
7. Dolphin for Veolia Environnement
Campaign Name: Veolia Environnement 2009
Tagline: The environment is an industrial challenge
Agency: BETC Euro RSCG
Produced in France.
Dolphin is one of six print ads in the 2009 Veolia Environnement campaign. All feature aerial views of sprawling cities with a strategically placed animal or plant image embedded in the city-scape to create a thought-provoking series of ads.
8. Sand Specimen for Khaleej Times
Tagline: On average 50 to 100 feet of beach is lost for every foot of sea-level rise. How long before land disappears all together? You decide. Help stop global warming.
Agency: Percept Gulf
Produced in the Unite Arab Emirates.
This picture, called Sand Specimen, shows a little bit of sand stored in a jar, and reminds us of those old museum specimens of extinct species.
9. Revenge for Cencosud
Tagline: Bring Your Bag.
Agency: Kepel & Mata
Produced in Argentina.
This is a great video to remind us to bring our own bags to the store. A bit Lion King-ish, but that’s not a bad thing! Translated, the text at the end of the video reads: “We’re all innocent. We’re all guilty. Plastic bags destroy the environment. Bring your bag.”
11. Air Conditioners for Columbia Sportswear Company
Tagline: The air cooling your home is heating the world.
Agency: Prolam/Y&R S.A.
Produced in Chile.
From ACT’s website:
“Columbia Sportswear Company has sponsored a warning to Santiago residents with an outdoor advertisement challenging the use of air conditioners. A banner held against an apartment block wall shows a man and his child struggling to cope in a flood. Air conditioning units project through the art work. ‘El aire que enfria tu hogar. Calienta el mundo’ is translated in English as ‘The air cooling your home is heating the world.’”
12. City Again Forest for Greenpeace
Tagline: Forests for life
Agency: Beijing Dentsu Advertising Co., Ltd.
Produced in China.
Our furry friends have been pushed to the brink of a cliff (read: extinction) in the war between animals and the machines (powered by us humans) in this ad, called City Again Forest.
13. The dying screensaver for Red Sea Coral Rescue Team
Agency: Shimoni Finkelstein DraftFCB
Produced in Isreal.
The text in the 2nd screen in The dying screensaver ad says, “Beauty doesn’t last forever. Only 30% of the red coral sea reef is still alive. Please help protect it. www.redsearescue.org” It’s an interesting take on those pretty desktop aquariums that pop up when computers are left idle; imagine if that aquarium imitated what was really happening in the real world? It wouldn’t be a pretty sight.
14. Agbar desert for Aigües de Barcelona
Tagline: Our water is thirsty.
Produced in Spain.
Instead of green roofs, here’s a cracked, dry land called Agbar desert sitting atop an urban landscape. It’s not a nice sight at all.
15. Treebike for Livegreentoronto
Tagline: Resources. Tips. Debates. Live Green at Toronto.
Produced in Canada.
The City of Toronto’s Live Green Toronto program is a five-year, $20-million initiative that aims to promote and support actions at the local level to reduce emissions, clean the air and protect the climate. Represented by the Treebike here, the program includes community animators who help people find information, link them to environmental groups and cash in on rebates – all to reach Toronto’s target of an 80 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
16. Printer for Trees for Africa
Tagline: Think before you print
Agency: Lowe Bull
Produced in South Africa.
A pretty neat ad that brings the message home about the impact that printing reams of paper has on the African forest.
17. Sea for Biocorner
Campaign Name: Protect our colors
Tagline: Protect our colors
Produced in Belgium.
This side-by-side comparison of a colourful sea and murky waters packs a real punch.