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Nationals, Environmentalists Clash Over Exxon

Note from Pat: A great example of how important it is for an organization to seriously consider the possible impact of one action on a key audience.? The Washington Nationals appear to have done a wonderful job in building its new stadium – but allowing Exxon to become a key advertiser at the park sends a confusing message to the public.? I have to admit that I was surprised to read that Exxon has spent $1.5 billion since 2004 on energy efficient measures -and the cynical part of me finds it rather disturbing that this spending coincides with a great deal of heat from Capital Hill due to record profits and rising prices – so the other question this story raises is ‘can a company such as Exxon overcome its past and become known and accepted by the public as an organization that is concerned for and involved in the protection of our environment’?

When the Washington Nationals? season opened in March, the team unveiled a stadium any environmentalist could love ? the country?s first certified green major professional sports stadium, with energy-conserving lights and water-conserving plumbing.

Now, the team is the focus of protests from environmentalists who say their issue is not with the stadium, but with the Nationals? advertising relationship with the oil giant ExxonMobil.

The company?s logo appears prominently on the left-field wall and is frequently featured on the stadium?s scoreboard.

Despite the stadium?s recognition for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design by the U.S. Green Building Council, ExxonMobil?s involvement has erased any good will, say the leaders of Strike Out Exxon, a combination of environmental, civic and religious groups.

Source: New York Times

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