Google is banning ads that promote climate change denialism in a new tweak to its ads and monetization policies.
The update, made on Thursday, will affect YouTube creators, Google advertisers and online publishers.
The rule change is the latest in a series of moves that restrict violating ads from running on YouTube, in search results, and the rest of the internet. Google will not allow an ad that “contradicts well-established scientific consensus around the existence and causes of climate change,” the company announced.
“Advertisers simply don’t want their ads to appear next to this content,” Google’s announcement stated. “And publishers and creators don’t want ads promoting these claims to appear on their pages or videos.”
Google has been trying to clean up its sprawling ad ecosystem that serves ads across the internet to millions of websites, including its own. Google has drafted similar bans on misinformation in advertising, especially during the pandemic when it tried to block anti-vaccine ads and ads that promote uncertain medical claims.
In this case, Google is going after climate change denial, which could be a politically sensitive subject. Google said it consulted world-recognized environmental organizations to determine the contours of the policy. The company is “differentiating between content that states a false claim as fact, versus content that reports on or discusses that claim,” the announcement said. “We will also continue to allow ads and monetization on other climate-related topics, including public debates on climate policy, the varying impacts of climate change, new research and more.”