The Carbon Is The Message: Havas To Manage How Ads Impact Climate

At a time when most big agency organizations seem preoccupied by digital media, Havas is launching a new service practice focusing on one of the most analog media known to man: carbon.

The Paris-based agency holding company this morning said the new practice, dubbed the “Climate Solidarity Initiative,” will help marketers develop methods for offsetting the carbon footprint created by producing campaigns across all media.

The plan, which is being rolled out at the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco this week, may be the ad industry’s most ambitious attempt to manage the impact it has on the planet’s climate.

Havas said the initiative utilizes a methodology developed by carbon strategy consultants Carbone 4 to establish a correlation between the total cost of producing ads and its carbon footprint.



“Our agencies then propose to include in the overall production budget a financial contribution to offset the carbon footprint calculated by this ratio, which represents a percentage of the amount of technical costs incurred,” Havas said in a statement announcing the program. “The contribution will figure as a distinct item in the overall quote for the service, and will represent around 0.2% of the total. In return, clients will receive a carbon offset certificate to incorporate into their own carbon balance.”

Havas said funds generated by the initiative will be invested in Verified Carbon Standard accredited projects managed by Pur Project.

The initiative will initially be deployed via the Havas Paris, Havas Events and BETC units, but Havas Group CEO Yannick Bolloré, Havas Group CEO, stated: “This pioneering initiative will gradually be adopted across the entire Havas Group worldwide."

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