Dentsu International is cutting air travel by 65% as part of its plans to reach net zero by 2030, Global CEO Wendy Clark told Cannes Lions Live viewers during a debate on climate change.

Clark joined WPP CEO Mark Read, Unilever’s Chief Digital and Marketing Officer, Conny Braams, plus Google President, EMEA Business & Operations, Matt Brittin to discuss how agencies and clients should collaborate more to better support the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and drive continued consumer behavioural change.

Dentsu announced its plans to be a net zero emissions company by 2030 in October last year. Flights was one of five environmental pillars the business said it would focus on – alongside technology, research & advertising, professional fees, buildings & fleet.

However, no targets were revealed at the time and Dentsu simply stated it would “reduce reliance” on flying staff to global destinations for business.

“Where flying remains necessary, we will analyse and then choose more environmentally-friendly airlines and routes,” the company said at the time.

During the Cannes Lions Live session, entitled 'How is our industry fighting climate change and how can we do it faster together?’ Clark said: “This is not the time to be competitive or sniping at each other. It’s a time to come together and worry about the future of our planet. We’ve decided to tell the industry how much we’re cutting flights by so that by putting it out there, we can push each other forward.”

Maher Nasser, Director of the Outreach Division in the United Nations Department of Global Communications joined the other panellists to urge greater levels of action and support for the SDGs in a time when companies are forming new habits and behaviours as we emerge from the pandemic.

“The advertising industry has the power to shape behaviours and culture and push leadership in the right direction,” Nasser said. 

Sourced from WARC