Coke Leads Movement for Clean Energy Billboards

by | Dec 30, 2008

times-square-coke-billboard.jpgJust in time for the big New Year’s celebration in Times Square, Coca-Cola has made the switch to wind power to generate the energy needed for its giant, iconic billboard.

Coke has displayed advertising in Times Square since 1932. Starting Dec. 31, the billboard will showcase the beverage maker’s “Refresh. Recycle. Repeat.” campaign.

Other brands in Times Square are following suit, signing an electrical supply agreement with ConEdison Solutions, a subsidiary of Consolidated Edison Inc – via the Atlanta Business Chronicle.

The collective change to wind power will prevent 1,886 metric tons of carbon dioxide from being released into the environment each year – the equivalent of taking 75 cars off the road or converting 38 houses to clean energy, AdWeek writes.

Last year in December PG&E unveiled the first solar-powered billboard in the U.S. A few months earlier, billboard companies started saying they would make more effort to be green: CBS Outdoor, for one, said it would rid PVC from 17,000 ad faces – 10 percent of the country’s total highway billboard count – by the end of next year.

Other forms of green advertising have been gaining traction. On Earth Day this year the snack brand SunChips ran print ads in U.S. newspapers that revealed a secret message when held up to the sun, touting the launch of its new solar-powered factory in Modesto, CA.

Coca-Cola’s campaign also touts its use of renewable energy and emissions reduction, but also focuses on meeting recycling and reuse goals. It has so far achieved the highest percentage of recycled content in aluminum cans, according to a recent industry report.

Read what Coke’s CEO, John Brock, had to say about the company’s sustainability initiatives.

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