Christian Aid and Impero Launch #StopRugbySinking Campaign to Spotlight Climate Injustice During Rugby World Cup

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London, 7th October 2023: Christian Aid and creative agency Impero have partnered on a new social campaign to raise awareness for climate injustice during The Rugby World Cup

London, 7th October 2023: Christian Aid and creative agency Impero have partnered on a new social campaign to raise awareness for climate injustice during The Rugby World Cup. #StopRugbySinking is inspired by the very real threat of rising sea levels faced by three of the smallest countries in the tournament (Fiji, Tonga, Samoa) because of fossil fuel burning by many of the richest.

The campaign is designed to start conversations about climate justice, and loss and damage to smaller countries. #StopRugbySinking will roll out across social channels and coincides with the launch of Christian Aid’s updated report, World in Disunion (originally published in 2019).

Influenced by the Pacific Islands' famous traditional war dancing, the hero film shows UK-based Pacific Island dance group Beats of Polynesia from Tonga, Samoa and Fiji, dancing in central London, knee deep in the Thames. The campaign forces people to consider the consequences of rising waters in countries that have had almost no part in the catastrophe that is facing them. The choreography tells the story of their troubles with climate change and is accompanied by a chant specifically written for the campaign called “The Battle for Climate Change”.

The campaign will be live from 7th October through to the end of the World Cup.

Patrick Watt, Chief Executive of Christian Aid, said: “The Rugby World Cup brings together some of the world’s biggest carbon emitters, and some of the most climate-vulnerable countries. When it comes to the climate crisis, there is no level playing field.

“The actions of big polluting countries like Australia, France and the UK have devastating consequences for low lying island nations in the Pacific, in the form of storms, and rising sea levels and temperatures.

“It is time for the big emitters to play by the rules, meet their commitments to limit climate change and repair the damage caused to climate-vulnerable communities. The wealthiest countries need to deliver the finance they’ve pledged for adaptation and commit to the loss and damage fund.”

Chris Tyas, Chief Strategy Officer at Impero adds: “We have been working with Christian Aid over the past few years to call out the injustices of the world. It is often those who have done the least to cause the climate crisis who are paying for its impact. The Rugby World Cup has the potential to act as a global stage for this important message to be seen and heard. It has been wonderful working with Kim and our Christian Aid team on this important campaign to raise awareness for climate justice.”