The oil industry’s top trade group will be among the advertisers vying for attention during halftime of Sunday’s Super Bowl game, according to an ad contract obtained by a political spending database.
The Sunlight Foundation, a nonproft open government group that maintains the database tracking political ad buys, showed that the American Petroleum Institute bought a 30-second spot for $100,000 from WRC-TV, the NBC affiliate for the Washington, D.C. area. According to the foundation, the ad was the single most expensive television spot of API’s recent campaign promoting the Keystone XL pipeline and other industry priorities as the new Republican-led Congress debates several energy-related bills.
An API spokeswoman said the group will fill the spot with its “Energy Superpower” ad championing hydraulic fracturing, the drilling technique that has led to a surge in natural gas production and made the U.S. the largest producer in the world. The Sunlight Foundation reported that API recently spent about $80,000 on a separate ad with WRC.
The lobbying firm spent $73.5 million on advertising and promotion in 2012, the last year for which the organization’s tax forms were available.
The 2014 Super Bowl was the most watched television program in U.S. history, with an average of 112.2 million viewers.