Many companies within corporate America, particularly clothiers and banks, have folded to social pressures to assign climate change blame entirely to the oil and gas industry. Some companies have sworn against engaging in business dealings with oil and gas companies without acknowledging the industry’s critical role and how their business itself exists, or at minimum, benefits from American oil and gas products.
For example, many lenders have sworn off approving loans for oil and gas projects. The few (but loudest) activists that have yet to consider the importance of industry to their lives and livelihoods celebrate these business embargoes. Similarly, ‘ESG’ investing mirrors this, placing an emphasis on ‘environmental, social, governance’ concerns ahead of returns when investing in capital markets. As a result, fossil fuel divestment movements have swept the country and even state pension funds.
The latest instance of companies discriminating against oil and gas industry members comes courtesy of The North Face. The outdoor clothing retailer refused to fill a custom jacket order for Innovex Downhole Solutions, an oil and gas services company, for reportedly not meeting their “brand standards.” Innovex Downhole Solutions CEO Adam Anderson’s now-viral response to parent company VF Corp. reveals The North Face would not sell the company jackets because of their business in the oil and gas industry.
Anderson notes the incredible modern achievements and significant quality of life improvements (particularly medical) that relied on materials or energy from oil and gas production. Anderson rightfully points out that North Face needs oil and gas materials to manufacture their clothes…making their denial a masterclass in hypocrisy.
In Addition, the Denver Business Journal last year reported that North Face’s parent company, VF Corp., had purchased a swath of land near a Denver area airport so that it could build a personal hangar for its company’s private corporate jets.
So just to recap this hypocrisy: The North Face won’t have an oil and gas company’s logo appear on their jackets – jackets that were manufactured with petroleum products – but have no problem taking jet fuel to accommodate their corporate travel and continue to benefit from the affordable energy and resources provided by the U.S. oil and gas industry for their continued business success.