An open letter to Netball Australia.

Dear Netball Australia,

I am writing this open letter to ask you to end your partnership with Origin Energy.

Origin Energy is a fossil fuel company which is profiting from the destruction of the planet, and is exploiting your organisation for sportswashing.

According to the company:

We’re joining the team at all levels, from your local club right up to the Suncorp Super Netball League and the Australian national side – who’ll now be known as the Origin Diamonds!

Origin Energy and the remainder of the fossil fuel industry are destroying the planet. According to Greenpeace:

Fossil fuel companies are wrecking our climate

Fossil fuel companies are spending to lock-in climate pollution

Fossil fuel companies cause deadly air pollution

Fossil fuel companies cause water pollution

Fossil fuel companies perpetuate environmental injustice

Fossil fuel companies don’t treat workers fairly

Fossil fuel companies have misled the public about the climate threat

Fossil fuel companies are attacking solutions, while raking in tax breaks

Furthermore, Origin pleaded guilty to flooding precious land in Queensland with almost 800,000 litres of contaminated gas wastewater. Studies into fracking gasfields globally have proven wastewater contains dangerous chemicals linked to cancer, asthma, kidney damage, and birth defects.2

[1] Origin Energy pleads guilty to releasing contaminated coal seam gas water, Sydney Morning Herald, 6 September 2022.
[2] ‘The Harms of Fracking’: New Report Details Increased Risks of Asthma, Birth Defects and Cancer, Rolling Stone, 13 March 2018.

Australia has the highest per capita carbon footprint of any nation on earth, and Aussies love sport. Fossil fuel corporations understand full well the power of sportwashing in a sports-mad nation, and their partnership with your organisation is clearly an attempt to exploit Australian culture in an attempt to protect their public image. Furthermore, according to Canstar Blue, Origin Energy is only ‘Partly Australian-owned”

Burning fossil fuels also threatens the very existence of many sports, and could place elite athletes in danger if they are forced to push their body beyond its physical limits in extreme weather conditions.

Cutting ties with a fossil fuel corporation is possible. Tennis Australia ended its partnership with Santos, and still manages to host the Australian Open, one of only four majors. Yes, sport is a business. Yes, sporting organisations need money. I’m asking that you source that money from elsewhere, and not from Origin Energy.

Yours Sincerely,

Kieran Blake

Image: Netball Australia


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