Urge Museum to Sever Ties With Oil Company

Target: Dr Hartwig Fischer

Goal: Do not renew the sponsorship contract between the British Museum and BP.

One of the British Museum’s biggest sponsors is BP, a company whose level of interest in the public good is best exemplified by the BP oil spill. Fortunately, the sponsorship contract between BP and the British Museum will soon expire. This presents the museum with an opportunity to sever its ties with BP and send the message that oil money is not an acceptable source of funding.

Fossil fuel companies spread their money and influence throughout society, a fact that gives them untoward influence on many aspects of our lives. This, in an era where climate science has revealed that fossil fuel companies’ business models endanger our climate, our species, and ecosystems throughout the world.

Perhaps the most insidious form of influence fossil fuel companies have is the funding they give to museums, schools and other educational institutions. In the case of museums, funding from the fossil fuel industry can affect which exhibitions get put on and undermine their status as a place of learning for the public.

London’s British Museum has long been a cultural institution that draws people from across the U.K. and across the world. Sign our petition and ask the new director of the British Museum, Dr Hartwig Fischer, to sever the historic museum’s ties with BP.


Dear Dr. Fischer,

The era of austerity has resulted in even the most prestigious institutions searching for alternative means of funding. However, there must be some ethical guiding principal when it comes to the sources of funding. With the evidence against the continued burning of fossil fuels mounting, it is unconscionable that the British Museum continues to count BP among its sponsors. Sponsorship from such a corporation serves only to undermine the museum’s credibility while providing a company engaged in the destruction of the environment with good PR.

As a global cultural institution that draws visitors from across the globe, I believe it is the British Museum’s duty to take a leadership role in global issues. Funding from BP undermines public trust in your museum and aligns your institution against the public good. I must urge you not to renew the sponsorship contract with BP.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Paul Hudson

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