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New Boycott Bush Website

New Website Targets Bush Bankrollers
EthicalConsumer.org (ECRA)
April 19th, 2001

The website, www.boycottbush.net, has been set up to allow individuals to influence the global politics of climate change. In March, President George Bush abandoned the USA's commitment to the Kyoto climate agreement, attracting worldwide condemnation. Now a new website, set up by UK-based campaign organisation ECRA, seeks to show that by targeting the companies that bankrolled Bush to victory in November, individuals can force his hand at climate talks in Bonn this July.

The site lists the top twenty corporate donors to the Republican Party with consumer brands, while at the same time noting more ethical alternatives. "These companies have bought access at the highest level," says Rob Harrison of ECRA. "Now let them use it to tell Bush he is wrong on this one."


Top Twenty Republican Donors with Global Consumer Brands

  1. Philip Morris - $4,554,732

  2. BP (ARCO) - $1,865,458

  3. Amway - $1,729,500

  4. News Corp - $1,204,950

  5. Enron - $1,146,615

  6. Citigroup $1,079,225

  7. MCI Worldcom - $1,074,608

  8. Federal Express (FDX Corp) - $1,057,550

  9. Pfizer - $1,051,225

  10. Chevron Texaco - $862,056

  11. Bristol-Myers Squibb - $848,556

  12. Revlon Group/ MacAndrews & Forbes - $761,000

  13. Limited Inc - $750,000

  14. Glaxo-Wellcome - $702,795

  15. Walt Disney - $663,625

  16. Anheuser-Busch - $663,025

  17. Archer Daniels Midland - $660,000

  18. Microsoft - $644,816

  19. Coca Cola - $610,875

  20. Schering-Plough - $600,685

ECRA calls on consumers who support urgent international action to address climate change to boycott the brands of these companies until such time as George Bush undertakes to implement the Kyoto agreement in full. Although companies like Microsoft, Disney and Kraft may not have directly pressed the Republicans to repudiate Kyoto, they must bear some responsibility for the government that their funds have helped to elect.

ECRA believes the site will become a focus for debate and information on the growing pressure from consumers around the world for Bush to step back from his position on Kyoto. ECRA urges critics, supporters and other campaigners to let them know what they think, or what they're up to by emailing ECRA at boycottbush@ethicalconsumer.org. Over the next few weeks, ECRA hopes to add further brands to the list, as its analysis of the information at the opensecrets.org website progresses.


Further Information

This article, the notes below and the consumer guide are all free of copyright. Please distribute it as widely as you wish. It was written by the staff at ECRA in April 2001. For comment on Tuesday 17th and thereafter please call ECRA on [+44] (0)161 226 2929.


What's Bush Up To?

It was March 29th when the Bush Administration shocked the world with its announcement that the US was to abandon plans to implement the Kyoto agreement, signed by President Clinton in 1997. In an astounding step backwards, the US energy plan is apparently to focus on the further exploitation of US natural gas reserves and attempts to reverse the Clinton Administration's banning of oil exploration in Alaska's National Wildlife Refuge.

Responding to international criticism surrounding the increased carbon emissions resulting from such a plan, Vice President Dick Cheney, who has been leading the debate on energy issues, has set up a committee to look into the further utilisation of nuclear power. In an interview for US television, Cheney argued that the US needed to build 65 new power stations per year for the next twenty years, some of which should be nuclear, which he believes to be the 'environmentally sound way to go'. This is a reversal of twenty years of energy policy thinking for the US, which has not licensed any new nuclear power stations since the Three Mile Island accident in 1979.


Other NGO campaigns

The response from environmental Non Governmental Organisation's and consumer groups in Europe has been swift, with Friends of the Earth organising the sending of over 50,000 emails to the White House within five days. The Green Group of Members of the European Parliament and the Free Alliance have been calling for sanctions against the US, including a consumer boycott of the US oil companies Texaco, Exxon (Esso) and Chevron. In the US, polls show that three quarters of the population are unhappy with President Bush's stance on climate change, and US Greenpeace has written to the top 100 US corporations, demanding that they state their support for resuming Kyoto negotiations or 'face the consequences'.


The New Website

www.boycottbush.net also lists alternative brands to buy for many of the boycotted products. In addition, it provides email links to the 20 companies concerned, helping consumers to write to them explaining what actions they intend to take. The lists of products to boycott, and detailed consumer advice, has also been circulated to hundreds of thousands of consumers around the world via environmental campaign group email networks.


The Consumer Guide


Amway
Brands to boycott: Amway household cleaners
Alternatives (ec54): Bio D, Ecover; Jeyes brands: Sanilav, Parozone, Ibcol; Reckitt Benckiser: Dettox, Mr Sheen, Lysol, Brasso
Brands to boycott: Amway vitamins
Alternatives: (ec64) Viridian, Quest, Perfectil


Anheuser-Busch
Brands to boycott: Budweiser, Michelob, Killarney's
Alternative brands: Becks, John Smiths, Theakstons


Archer Daniels Midland
Brands to boycott: Granose, Organic, Protoveg, RealEat, White Wave


Bristol-Myers Squibb
Brand to boycott: Clairol, Born Blonde
Alternatives: Shampoo (ec52): Honesty, Beauty Without Cruelty, Neals Yard, Body Shop
Brand to boycott: Mum deodorant
Alternatives: (ec37) Weleda, Beauty Without Cruelty, Tom's of Maine


BP (ARCO)/Chevron-Texaco
There has been a call to boycott the US oil companies Exxon/Mobil and Chevron/Texaco. BP is also on the list of donors to Bush. Our Best Buy for the petrol and diesel report is another, smaller US oil company, Murphy Oil (Murco brand). Next Best Buy was the Q8 brand, owned by Kuwait Petroleum. The 'UK' brand, owned by CPL Industries, was also a Best Buy, but the company is only a distributor, not a producer, and therefore buys its petrol from one of the other oil companies.


Citigroup
Brands to boycott: Citibank
Alternatives: Co-operative Bank, Triodos Bank, The Ecology Building Society (EC60)
Brands to Boycott: Citigroup Insurance
Alternatives for insurance available in the UK: Britannic, Royal London Mutual and CGNU


Coca Cola
Brands to boycott: Coca Cola, Coke, Sprite, Fanta, Lift, Minute Maid Alternative brands: Irn-Bru, Tizer, Aqua Libra, Am, Vimto, Whole Earth


Enron
Brands to Boycott: Enron Direct (Electricity and gas)
Alternatives: Unit[e], Scottish and Southern, Scottish Power and Swalec (EC70).


FDX Corp
Brands to Boycott: Federal Express
Alternatives: Securicor


Glaxo Smithkline
Brands to boycott: Macleans, Aquafresh toothpaste
Alternatives: (ec69) Green People, Tom's of Maine, Kingfisher, Nelson, Sarakan
Brands to boycott: Lucozade, Ribena
Alternatives: (ec65) Whole Earth, Barr (Irn Bru), Vimto, Rubicon, Aqua Libra, Purdeys, Virgin Cola
Brands to boycott: Horlicks
Brands to boycott: Solpadeine
Alternatives: (ec55) Lloyds Chemists generic painkillers, Unichem generic painkillers, Disprin (Reckitt Benckiser)
Brands to boycott: Tagamet, Tums
Alternatives: (ec32) Windcheaters (Napp Pharmaceutical)


Limited Inc.
Brands to boycott: Victoria's Secret lingerie, Body & Bath Works toiletries


MCI Worldcom
Brands to Boycott: Worldcom, uunet
Alternatives: Greenet, Poptel and World Online


Microsoft Corp
Brands to Boycott: Windows, Frontpage, Internet Explorer
Alternatives: Apple Computers OS, Linux


News Corp
Brands to Boycott: 20th Century Fox, BSB, The Times, The Sun, News of the World, Harper Collins


Pfizer
Brands to boycott: Zantac
Alternatives: Indigestion (ec32): Windcheaters (Napp Pharmaceutical)
Brands to boycott: Actifed, Benylin, Sudafed, Halls cough remedies
Alternatives: Cold remedies (ec32): Olbas, Coldenza, Coldeeze, Lemsip (Reckitt Benckiser)
Brand to boycott: Listerine
Alternatives: Toothpastes (ec69): Green People, Tom's of Maine, Kingfisher, Nelson, Sarakan, Thursday Plantation
Brand to boycott: Warner Lambert
Brand to boycott: Viagra


Philip Morris
Brands to boycott: Miller, Kraft, Nabisco, Maxwell House, Kenco, Jacobs Suchard, Toblerone, Daim
Alternative brands: Becks, Caf Campesino, Equal Exchange, Cafdirect, Divine, Ritter Sport, Maya Gold


Revlon/MacAndrews & Forbes
Brand to boycott: Revlon cosmetics
Alternatives: (ec64) Body Shop, Beauty Without Cruelty, Clarins Brand to boycott: Charlie perfume
Alternatives: (ec47) Body Shop, Beauty Without Cruelty, Estee Lauder (Aramis, White Linen, Youth Dew)


Schering Plough
Brands to boycott: Dr Scholl footcare
Brands to boycott: Coppertone suncare
Alternatives: (ec65) Honesty, Body Shop, Delph, Hawaiian Tropic, Malibu, Clarins, NoAd


Walt Disney
Brands to Boycott: The Disney Store, ABC Magazines, Buena Vista Home Entertainment
Alternatives: Lego (EC55 Toys)


Other Campaigns and Contacts

Flood Bush! - Friends of the Earth Europe are running a campaign to flood the White House with email protests, currently over 100,000 emails have been sent and the resulting chaos is reported to have brought down the White House email server twice already.

Rising Tide is a UK coalition of groups and activists committed to a grassroots approach to fighting climate change.

On Tuesday April 11th a cross party group of MPs from the UK Parliament, launched an unprecedented email campaign to persuade Coca Cola to use its influence to reverse Bush's decision.


Other Boycotts

Families Against Bush (For Our Climate), are calling for a boycott of all Bush's funders who do not specifically state their opposition to the Kyoto pull out.

Greenpeace is working towards worldwide actions and protests to coincide with the COP 6.5 conference on climate change in Bonn, Germany in July

Recognition of the urgency of the global warming issue is no longer confined to the radical and environmental press, an interesting summary of the current scientific debate.


ECRA's Research Details


Targeted Brands

ECRA has looked at the top fifty corporate donors to the Bush/Republican election campaign (2000 election cycle) listed on the website. These are complex totals which include cash as well as donations in kind and individual contributions from Directors.

ECRA has then assessed whether or not these 50 donors have global consumer brands which are vulnerable to consumer pressure. Although significant donors with consumer brands, tobacco companies have not been included on the list because no alternative (non-Republican donor) companies supply these products. For simplicity, companies undergoing complex recent takeovers or restructuring such as Seagram or RJR Nabisco, have been omitted.


Alternatives

Alternative brands have been listed where appropriate. Some of these alternatives will only be available to UK consumers, and have been taken from previously published reports in Ethical Consumer magazine. These lists were then checked against the excellent list of corporate political donors at the website www.opensecrets.org. Some alternatives may be listed as funding lobbyists but not making campaign donations.

The references such as (EC57) show that the information came from issue 57 of Ethical Consumer magazine. Where products are not easily substitutable, such as books or films, no alternative brands have been listed. Not all the brands of very large consumer product companies like Philip Morris have been listed at this stage for reasons of simplicity.


Company Addresses

Amway Public Relations Dept, Amway Corporation, 7575 Fulton St E, Ada, Michigan 49355-0001

Anheuser-Busch Co Inc. - 1 Busch Pl, Saint Louis, Missouri 63118-1849

Archer Daniels Midland Co 4666 E Faries Parkway, Decatur, Illinois 62526-5666

Bristol-Myers Squibb Company Inc - Public Relations Dept, 345 Park Ave, New York 10154-0004

BP Public Relations, Britannic House, 1 Finsbury Circus, London EC2M 7BA, England, UK

Chevron - 575 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94105

Citigroup Inc 388 Greenwich St, New York 10013-2375

Coca Cola - Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc. P.O. Box 723040, Atlanta, GA USA

Enron Corp. Public Relations Dept. P.O. Box 1188, Suite 4933 Houston, TX 77251-1188

FDX Corp 2005 Corporate Ave, Memphis, Tennessee 38132-1702

Glaxo SmithKline Glaxo Wellcome House, Berkeley Ave, Greenford, Middlesex UB6 ONN, England, UK

Limited Inc Public Relations, Limited Inc, 3 Limited Parkway, Colombus, Ohio 43230-1467

MCI Equities Corporation 200 Bellevue Parkway, Ste 500, Wilmington, Delaware 19809-3741

Microsoft - Corporate headquarters: One Microsoft Way, Redmond, WA 98052-6399

News Corp - The News Corporation Limited, 1211 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10036

Pfizer Inc Customer Relations, Pfizer Inc, 235 E 42 St, New York, 10017-5703

Philip Morris - Public Relations, Philip Morris Companies Inc. 120 Park Avenue New York, NY 10017

Revlon Group/ MAFCO Holdings Inc 35 E 62nd St, New York 10021-8016

Schering-Plough - 2000 Galloping Hill Road, Kenilworth, N.J. 07033-0530

Walt Disney 500 S Buena Vista St, Burbank, California, 91521-0004