Fench energy giant Total, one of the world’s largest oil companies, recently announced it would withdraw from its plans to bid for sponsorship of the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Following a meeting with Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo, Total President Patrick Pouyanne decided not to go through with the bid, reports French newspaper Le Monde. Noting Hidalgo’s environmental initiatives and oncoming ban of diesel cars, which is already slowly going into effect, Pouyanne does not want to sponsor Paris 2024 if the company also stands to be ridiculed by the city for the industry it operates in.
In 2018, Paris 2024 President Tony Estanguet, alongside Hidalgo and founder of Grameen Bank Muhammad Yunus, signed an agreement aimed at achieving “triple zero” by the 2024 Games, meaning Paris would strive to wholly eliminate carbon emissions, unemployment, and poverty. Though it may seem contradictory Paris 2024 and Total would ever pursue a partnership given Paris’s focus on making itself a “Clean Green Games,” Total is an established sponsor of international sporting teams and events, including the Africa Cup of Nations, as well as the Total Direct Energie pro cycling team, which operates under Total Direct Energie, formerly Direct Energie, an electric supplier purchased by the fossil fuel giant in 2018.
In addition to Mayor Hidalgo’s efforts to remove carbon-emitting vehicles from Paris’s roads, she has also thrown her support behind an electric car sharing service. Of note, in the 2018 acquisition of Direct Energie, Total also purchased G2mobility, a manufacturer of chargers for electric vehicles.