The video has been taken down, but local outrage lingers.
A roughly nine-minute video clip, published by Red Bull TV and posted online on Aug. 20 as part of the company’s ‘Who is JOB’ series starring professional Hawaiian surfer Jamie O’Brien, included a scene where stunts were performed over a log that had been set on fire in the middle of Kennedy Lake.
The scene quickly drew ire as online commenters condemned the suspected use of gasoline to set the fire within a sensitive watershed.
Red Bull took the video down and issued an apology on Monday, though that apology suggests the video was removed because the company failed to obtain the necessary permits to film within a Provincial Park.
In an emailed statement to the Westerly News, Red Bull spokesperson Patrice Radden declined to answer whether gasoline was used during the shoot and did not address any environmental impacts the filming may have caused.
“While one of our athletes was visiting Kennedy Lake, one of the producers we hired videoed him performing stunts,” Radden wrote. “It has now come to our attention that this was done without permission from BC Parks. This should not have happened and we regret it. We have apologized to BC Parks and we have taken down the video clip.”
This statement isn’t up to snuff in the eyes of Tofino local Josh Temple who first saw the video on Saturday and has been adamantly calling for both an apology and restitution from Red Bull.
Temple shared his response to Red Bull’s statement with the Westerly News on Wednesday morning.
“Your statement is not a sufficient apology as you simply conceded that you did not have permission from [B.C.] Parks to film there,” Temple wrote.
“Your continued inability to seriously condemn the actions of your Red Bull representatives, and subsequently your inability to take responsibility for these actions and issue a public apology to the community, only further serves to prove that Red Bull has no intention of taking responsibility for these actions.”
He reminded the company that pouring gasoline into a sensitive watershed like Kennedy Lake, Vancouver Island’s largest body of fresh water, is both dangerous and illegal and assured he would “vehemently” pursue charges through B.C.’s Ministry of Environment.
Ministry of Environment spokesperson David Karn told the Westerly on Monday that the Conservation Officer Service is looking into the incident.
The Westerly reached out to Red Bull for further comment but did not immediately hear back Wednesday morning.