Amanda Brown, Deputy General Secretary of the National Education Union, said:
“The National Education Union (NEU) is opposed to fracking which encourages reliance on fossil fuels and takes the focus away from investing in renewable forms of energy. It is not the solution to the UK’s energy challenges. The young people taught by our members recognise this and are demanding change, as witnessed when thousands of students walked out of school to demand climate justice as part of the youth strike 4 climate movement.
“The NEU fully supports the notion of the Daily Mile and its intention of improving the physical and mental health of young children, instilling in them a lifelong habit of exercise. However, we strongly object to Ineos sponsorship of this initiative. Ineos holds multiple licences to frack for shale gas and, for the sake of the planet and particularly our children’s futures, we need to move quickly away from a carbon economy. We are also concerned about the manufacture of plastics by Ineos; many of the children taught by our members are alarmed at the effect of plastics on marine life.
“Schools are beginning to discover that the Daily Mile is sponsored by a company which is profiting from climate change as a significant player in the oil and gas market, and as a result are withdrawing. Sponsorship by Ineos will not encourage participation in the Daily Mile. We would urge Ineos to consider its position and Daily Mile to urgently seek a replacement sponsor.”