By Jennifer Farley

Redesign BP’s Logo

By Jennifer Farley

Unless you’ve been living in a cave, you’re probably well aware that one of the worst oil spills ever is causing massive environmental damage and destroying vast areas of the coast of the Southern United States. BP who are the owners of the equipment and rigs which caused the spill are in the middle of both an environmental and public relations disaster.

Greenpeace UK have launched a competition and are inviting designers to create a new logo for BP, which stands for “Beyond Petroleum”. BP is pursuing ‘unconventional oil’ – the Canadian tar sands and deepwater drilling and causing massive damage as they go, not to mention the total disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.

Your brief is to create a logo for BP which shows that the company is not ‘beyond petroleum’ – they’re up to their necks in tar sands and deepwater drilling.

Depending on how you feel about logo design competitions, you may be interested in joining this one if only as a method to vent your anger. The winning entry will be used in Greenpeace efforts against BP. The judges are looking for concepts and ideas so you don’t need to be a professional designer as the logo will be finished by a “top graphic designer”. There are three categories: professional designers and design students; the general public; and those under 18. The competition close on June 28, 2010 at 5:30 GMT and you can enter by filling in a form on the Greenpeace site, downloading a template and then uploading your concept art work to the Greenpeace Flickr group.

According to the web site they have been overwhelmed with entries, here’s a small sample of the designs that have been uploaded to the Flickr site so far.




BP4 4


What do you think of these rebrands? Will you be entering one of your own?

  • clussman

    We should just declare @BPGlobalPR the winner and move on…

  • Is this the same Greenpeace with the petroleum-powered boats?

  • Sophia

    BP stands for “British Petroleum”, not “Beyond Petroleum.”

    • Hi Sophia, you’re right. It originally was British Petroleum but in 2001 the company formally renamed itself as BP plc and adopted the tagline “Beyond Petroleum,” which remains in use today.

      • It is only a tagline though, BP itself is British Petroleum.

      • bill green

        Sorry Jennifer, BP became ‘Beyond Petroleum’ due to the 1998 merger with Amoco. British Petroleum’s strong asset was considered, and BP stuck as the new group title; the new identity was developed by Landor in 1999. Beyond Petroleum was coined by Ogilvy & Mather.
        However, that said, all this re-design drive from Greenpeace is total pap, so are the creative responses.

  • Beck&Caul

    I second clussman

  • Anything I entered would feature a noose.

  • How is this legal? This is open slander.

    • There’s a huge difference between satire and slander, at least under American law. Corporations like BP would love to create some “corporate Taliban” legal structure where they could imprison me or you for saying or designing anything that might reflect poorly on them. Me, I defend the designers’ right to satire BP as harshly as they choose — and their right to satire Obama, Gordon Brown, Kevin Rudd, Greenpeace, the US “tea parties”, or any other public figures or entities that they choose.

  • corbyboy

    I think you need to be careful about getting into political debates on a site like this. There are so many things to think about before you come down so hard on BP.

    Your statement about BP owning the equipment and rigs is not true. A company called Transocean own the rig and have leased it to BP until 2013.

    • Hi Chris, the post wasn’t really intended to provoke a political debate but I suppose with everything that’s going on in the world with oil companies it can bring up strong emotions. As this is a design blog, I think the story is relevant though.

      • I can see how you didn’t intend to provide a political debate – there’s nothing political about Greenpeace or slandering a public company because you are mad at them. That’s just design talk, right?

        Your loose language like ‘destroying vast areas of the coast’ and the incorrect definition of ‘BP’ isn’t going to exacerbate the risk of political talk, right?

      • BP’s actions have destroyed vast areas of the Gulf of Mexico’s ecosystem. BP operates the Deepwater Horizon oil rig under its policies and practices, which makes both BP and Transocean culpable. The beaches, wetlands and barrier islands of the Gulf Coast — Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Texas, parts of eastern Mexico — have already been irreparably and catastrophically damaged. Tens of thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands, of small businesses and individual entrepreneurs have lost, or are going to lose, their livelihoods. And the damage keeps mounting. These are facts, regardless of whether they offend your sensibilities or not.

        While this is first and foremost a design blog, we design in the real world and react to real-world events. You’re welcome to defend BP all you like, but while people run to deflect the blame and make excuses for BP’s actions, the Gulf ecosystem is dying. Whether we’re designers, bricklayers, or CEOs, we need to operate in the real world, acknowledge the reality of events, and go from there.

      • More loose language? I didn’t defend BP or make excuses, so I’m not sure where you got that. Irreparable and catastrophic damage to beaches, wetlands areas, and barrier islands in Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Texas, parts of eastern Mexico – that is certainly not a confirmed fact at this point and only in a few years will we have some understanding of the scope of the damage. Those are simply not facts, they are conjecture.

        Not unlike the world reaction when Katrina hit us in Louisiana, both fact and fiction run wild in the media and in public opinion. The funny thing about facts, however, is that they aren’t as subjective as people would like. Like all disasters, the true facts and story will [hopefully] be revealed over time – although this never really happened after Katrina as the world chose to go with the CNN narrative on how it unfolded.

  • WoodchipWilbur

    Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.
    I’m a million miles from trying to defend BP or any other oil co. but… if you drive a car; if you fly; if you turn on a light… it is YOU who is demanding this petroleum and it is YOU who is demanding the exploration in increasingly challenging environments.

    • tofuwarrior

      Spot on.
      BP and the other oil companies suck because they could push better fuel sources but I don’t see all these people jumping on the bandwagon doing anything about the cheap flights they take or the air freighted food or the gas guzzling cars they buy. For the americans to get uppety about BP given their record as a nation of fuel consumers and given the oil businessman they elected TWICE is beyond hypocrisy – you reap what you sow.

      • It was Greenpeace UK that started this logo thing, tofuwarrior. The UK is not part of the US, FYI, and people in the UK and evidently Sitepoint from Australia seem to be taking positions, too. But thanks for keeping this blog post and comment thread non-political :)

    • Very valid points Wilbur.

    • I disagree. We participate in economy because we have essentially no choice. If I could buy a car that was manufactured and runs with zero carbon footprint, maybe I would. But given that I don’t have that choice, am I to blame for making the best of the choices I do have?

      Consumers are not primarily responsible for the excesses of consumer capitalism. Suppliers are. Consumers merely buy what’s available.

      Sure we want cheaper prices, and when cheaper prices come along we buy into them. Then the suppliers turn round and say that this behavior is consumers “demanding” lower prices. But it isn’t, it’s innocent people making the best of the world they were born into.

      • Poor helpless consumers, making the best of the world they were born into! Consumers are just doing their best, those innocent people :) Oh brother!

      • Very astute comment, James. Thanks for adding more light and turning down the heat a bit.

  • Marcel

    BP = Big Problem

  • I did some research the other day into global oil usage (barrels/day) and the number of barrels leaked into the Gulf of Mexico by this accident.

    It turns out, that if all the oil leaked so far had been captured and used, it would last only 8 1/2 minutes at global oil usage rates… insane!

  • So much for the ‘no politics’ on Sitepoint.

    • Sagewing: Like Jennifer said, this is relevant to the design blog. Like it or not, it’s her call on whether a comment should be allowed on her blog, and the guidelines for what we allow on the forums are separate. The forum is not the blog.

  • Regarding consumer responsibility vs. provider responsibility, I think we all have a hand in the problem. I work 6.2 miles from home and choose to drive an older car mostly because I know the are isn’t likely to spontaneously combust like the GM high-end SUV’s with the flaming windshield washer systems. Also, I can work on older cars.

    One day I chose to walk to and from work and didn’t do it again because of safety concerns. It’s also not very practical during Houston’s mid-summer, but it can be done. It’s a choice. I could choose to ride a bicycle as well.

    I could choose not to use toothpaste since it requires a manufacturing plant to produce and comes in a plastic container. I could choose not to shower since the water requires a treatment plant, plumbing, etc. I could choose not to use a computer that requires all sorts of petroleum products, other chemicals, power plants, batteries, etc, ad nauseum.

    The point of all this is that we all have a hand it in it. Blaming BP won’t fix anything.

    Almost forgot. Do some research on the environmental hazards of those “green” windmills with 130 foot blades. I watch them come out of the Port of Houston on the back of more than an 18-wheeler. The windmills are manufactured, require paint, steel, lubricants and aren’t biodegradable when it comes time to replace the blades.

  • Name

    Can’t agree that it’s all about consumers choice. Did you know taht oil companies have bought rights on patents of improved battery technologies? Why? To prevent the development of electric cars, of course. A lot of alternative energy sources have been found but oil companies have blocked them all and are willing to do that in the future ANY cost.

    • Are you claiming that ‘oil companies’ have bought all rights on ‘improved battery technologies’ and that oil companies are blocking the development of ‘all alternative energy sources’ ? That is a pretty wild claim to make with such vague language, no sources, and no details. I’m amazed that you can see into the future to see what oil companies will do, too!

      My friend has a solar powered house and in most months sells energy back to the power company. He uses his solar power to charge his electric car, and his wife’s car is a hybrid.

      He must have snuck one by oil companies! Poor consumer has no options :)

  • partelo
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