Tuesday 3 September 2019 12:59 pm

New York Times drops sponsorship of London oil conference after climate protests

The New York Times has dropped its sponsorship of an oil conference in London next month following pressure from climate activists.

Climate campaigners including Extinction Rebellion held protests outside the newspaper’s Manhattan offices over its sponsorship of the Oil & Money conference.

Read more: Climate change activists threaten chaos at Heathrow with drone protest

The event, which is in its 40th year, is due to take place at the Intercontinental Hotel on Park Lane in October, and is expected to attract top executives and policy makers from the energy industry.

The chief executives of BP, Royal Dutch Shell and Total are all listed as speakers at the conference, alongside officials from the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Opec.

However, The New York Times has decided to scrap its deal with Oil & Money, saying the subject matter of the conference gave it “cause for concern”.

“Over the last several years The [New York] Times has significantly expanded its reporting on climate change and its impact, as well as broader investigative and explanatory coverage of energy and environmental policy,” the firm said in a statement.

“We want there to be no question of our independence or even the potential appearance of a conflict of interest.”

The New York Times has also faced criticism over its coverage of climate issues, with Extinction Rebellion calling for the newspaper to use “climate emergency language” that states the risks of climate change more clearly.

Read more: Climate protesters throw red paint at Brazil’s London embassy

Roughly 70 people were arrested earlier this summer when protesters blocked roads in front of the media organisation’s headquarters.

A spokeswoman for the newspaper said at the time: “We fully support this group’s right to express their point of view, even when we disagree with it as it relates to our coverage.”

Main image credit: Getty