IAB Europe releases European Common Commitment for sustainable digital advertising

IAB Europe CEO, Townsend Feehan

IAB Europe, the European-level industry association for the digital marketing and advertising ecosystem, has released a new European IAB Common Commitment Agreement on Sustainability signed by 18 National IABs and Federations across Europe. The Commitment demonstrates the need and wants from National Federations for a collaborative and consistent approach to the measurement methodology of carbon emissions. This includes the regulatory and policy taxonomy, and the mapping and standardisation of best practices for the delivery of ads across the digital supply chain.

French think tank, The Shift Project, estimates that carbon emissions associated with the internet, devices, and supporting systems have reached almost 4 per cent of global greenhouse emissions. With these emissions projected to double in the near future,IAB Europe said it is crucial for the industry to acknowledge the climate crisis and take decisive action now. This, it said, will help to ensure a sustainable advertising choice for brands while most importantly, helping to reduce the overall carbon footprint of the digital advertising ecosystem.

In response to this urgent need, IAB Europe, along with National IABs and Federation signatories, said it is committed to providing guidance and support to organisations on their sustainability journeys. By working collectively, they aim to establish consistent European standards, practices, and solutions that address the critical issues of sustainability.

The Common Commitment reflects a shared vision and dedication to a comprehensive work plan. This plan will be delivered by IAB Europe’s Sustainability Standards Committee and will involve developing strategies, guidelines, and taxonomies that align with regulations and policies while considering the broader aspects of sustainability, including environmental, social, and economic impacts. It will also help elevate work being done at a National level to bring it up to a European level in a consistent manner, and will prioritise the reduction of carbon emissions specifically associated with digital advertising and emphasise the importance of climate action. 

“The aspiration to reduce CO? emissions in the digital advertising supply chain will test our capacity to act in unison more than any other policy or business goal,” said IAB Europe CEO, Townsend Feehan. “The Common Commitment we are announcing today is a modest but critical step, enabling our European network to collaborate at an unprecedented pace internally and bringing critical mass to our engagement with global partners.”