Below the Line

Yule log replaced with Amazon rainforest fire to remind people of deforestation

By Kyle O'Brien | Creative Works Editor

December 17, 2019 | 4 min read

The Yule log fireplace channel is a staple for the holidays, but the Amazon Rainforest Conservancy (ARC) is replacing the peaceful crackling log with visions of burning rainforest scenes.

The ARC has launched its first ever holiday initiative with agency Zulu Alpha Kilo, replacing the classic Yule log fireplace channel using real footage of the Amazon burning to draw attention back to the burning rainforest, with the Rainforest Fire Channel.

The rainforest fires have become increasingly dire with man-made burning causing the highest rate of destruction to the Amazon in more than a decade. The forest has seen an increase in damage of nearly 30% from August 2018 to July 2019, according to the ARC. Though the issue was a hot topic in the summer, the Amazon fires have begun to fade from the news.

Rainforest Fire Channel

The Rainforest Fire Channel

Jana Bell, the president of the Amazon Rainforest Conservancy said: “In August, everyone was talking about the Amazon burning. But now with it out of the media, people think the problem has gone away, and it hasn’t. That’s why we launched this initiative.”

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To bring this issue back to prominence, the ARC will be broadcasting the #RainforestFireChannel across social media. It will livestream the footage, with the idea of getting people to participate, not only by donating, but also by sharing the channel. It will play for the month of December to raise awareness and encourage donations towards the ARC’s efforts to save the Amazon.

The campaign also includes a 30-second PSA that juxtaposes the Yule log with the Amazon burning. The spot opens on the familiar warm, crackling fireplace channel that is popular during the holiday. It slowly transforms into a blazing Amazon fire. Text on screen states: “This holiday, there’s one fire we should all be watching closely”.

“By transforming an old holiday staple, we wanted to make the message relevant again during the holiday season” said Zak Mroueh, founder and chief creative officer of Zulu Alpha Kilo.

Also, through media agency UM, the PSA will run on TV and in cinema. Additional media includes out-of-home and pre-roll on Snapchat.

The Rainforest Fire Channel by Zulu Alpha Kilo

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