Monthly Archives: January 2017

A Greener Festival Announce 2016 European and US Award Winners

  • agf_award_2016-logo25 festivals across 13 countries awarded the Greener Festival Award for 2016.
  • 10thyear of the Greener Festival Awards
  • Tougher standards raise the bar and challenge events.
  • Awards presented at EPIC, Eurosonic Noorderslag, Netherlands.

A Greener Festival (AGF) have announced all 25 winners of the Greener Festival Award since the schemes relaunch in 2016. These are the first events to receive this prestigious award since it’s relaunch last year, with additional requirements of events who apply.

An Awards ceremony for winners was held at EPIC, Eurosonic Noorderslag, in partnership with Green Event Netherlands on Friday 13th January, 2017. AGF Director Teresa Moore presented certificates to winners including  Das Fest (Germany), Body & Soul (Ireland) and Glastonbury Festival (UK) (pictured left to right).

Co-Founder of AGF, Claire O’Neill said “Events who have achieved the Greener Festival Award 2016 have shown an incredible dedication to walking the talk, minimising the environmental impact of their events and using them as a positive and much needed portal for change. It has not at all been easy, with the most challenging assessments to face events in our 10 year history. We salute all of you!”

To participate festivals are required to complete a self-assessment looking at 11 categories of sustainability including travel & transport, waste, local ecosystems and external reach and behaviour. Independent AGF Auditors visit the event to inspect the actions on the ground, and work with the organisers post event to gather supporting evidence and data.

“After five years of raising the bar on the environmental and community impact of Green Music Fest, A Greener Festival challenged us to critically analyze all aspects of event operations. Bright Beat now brings this elevated level of awareness to all of our events, as ‘a rising bar lifts all festivals” said Stephanie Katsaros, Sustainability Director of Highly Commended Award winner, Green Music Fest (Chicago, USA) and Bright Beat Founder.

Green Music festival with their Award

Greenbelt UK

Nozstock the Hidden Valley

And the 2016 winners are:

OUTSTANDING
Boom Festival (Portugal)
We Love Green (France)

HIGHLY COMMENDED
Cambridge Folk Festival (UK)
DGTL Festival (Netherlands)
Glastonbury Festival (UK)
Green Music Fest (USA)
Heart of Glass Heart of Gold (France)
Øya Festival (Norway)
Welcome to the Future (Netherlands)

COMMENDED
Bona Nit Barcelona (Spain)
Das Fest (Germany)
Extrema Outdoors (Netherlands)
Greenbelt Festival (UK)
Kew the Music (UK)
Liberation Festival (Netherlands)
Malmofestivalen (Sweden)
Northside Festival (Denmark)
Primavera Sound (Spain)
Wood Festival (UK)

IMPROVERS
Arla Food Fest (Denmark)
Body & Soul (Eire)
LaSemo (Belgium)
Metal Days (Slovenia)
Nozstock: the Hidden Valley (UK)
Paradise City (Belgium)

An insight to what these events are doing, and what is on the horizon for sustainable events will be presented at the 9th annual Green Events & Innovations Conference, London, 7th March, in association with the International Live Music Conference (ILMC).

André Soares, Sustainability Designer of Boom Festival (Portugal) said Boom Festival 2016 was a great personal challenge and this award means more than you can imagine. I appreciate all the work [A Greener Festival] have done to increment the evaluation criteria and I believe the results of your work will have a lasting impact in the music and festival industry.”

Robert Gomez, Green Music Fest (Chicago, USA) Founder shared that, “Being ‘Highly Commended’ by A Greener Festival really validates Green Music Fest’s environmentally sustainable and socially responsible practices and, we hope, inspires other local festivals to consider doing the same.”

Artur Mendes, Boom Festival “”We are happy to get the award once again, for the 5th time in a row the Greener Festival auditors recognised Boom with the Outstanding prize. It is the only eco award for festivals that we give credibility as there is a team visiting the festivals and this year the evaluation was more thorough and detailed; Boom is totally independent, no sponsors, and engaging in sustainability is made strictly with our own resources and an amazing contribution of our fabulous Boomers. On the other hand, we are using the Boom experience to reforest the Boomland and act on many fronts such as charity, on the integration of people, and positively affect the surrounding area of the festival which is one of the poorest in Portugal with unemployment rate of 16% and more than 50% pensioners. We dedicate this award to all Boomers”.

ANOTHER PLANET?

Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore

Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore

In the USA Democrats have promised to try to thwart the appointment of Scott Pruitt as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, amid fears within the agency that he will trigger an “unprecedented disaster” for America’s environment and public health. Donald Trump has nominated Pruitt to lead an agency he has sued multiple times in his role as attorney general of Oklahoma. Pruitt has vowed to dismantle serried environmental rules and is currently involved in a legal effort by 27 states to overturn Barack Obama’s clean power plan, the president’s centerpiece policy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Giraffes have seen a 38% decline in their numbers since 1985, falling from about 157,000 to 97,500 today. They sadly join the “red list” compiled by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which has also added more than 700 newly recognised bird species, but 13 of these are already extinct. But there is good news in the list as well with the rediscovery of a few species thought to have been lost, such a Madagascan freshwater fish which had not been seen since the 1960s, and the recovery of the Seychelles white-eye bird after conservation efforts.

Google’s data centres and the offices for its 60,000 staff will be powered entirely by renewable energy from next year, in what the company has called a “landmark moment”. The Guardian reports that the internet giant is already the world’s biggest corporate buyer of renewable electricity, last year buying 44% of its power from wind and solar farms. Now it will be 100%, and an executive said it would not rule out investing in nuclear power in the future, too.

Paris had a second day of free public transport due to a spike in air pollution – and some cars were barred from the roads. The city is suffering its worst and most prolonged winter pollution for at least 10 years, the Airparif agency which measures the levels said on Wednesday. In the week Authorities said only drivers with odd-numbered registration plates can drive in the capital region on Wednesday. Drivers of even-numbered cars were given the same opportunity on Tuesday, but could now be fined up to €35 if they are caught behind the wheel. More than 1,700 motorists were fined for violations on Tuesday. Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo said images of smog blanketing the capital were proof of the need to reduce vehicle use in the city centre.

London mayor Sadiq Khan will  more than double funding to clean up the capital’s dirty air. London is one of the most polluted of dozens of cities in the UK that breach EU standards on nitrogen dioxide (NO2), a toxic gas caused by diesel vehicles. Air pollution has been linked to nearly 9,500 premature deaths in the city each year. Funding for air quality measures over the next five years will be more than doubled to £875m, under new plans, up from the £425m committed under the former mayor Boris Johnson. Khan will has also promised to spend £770m on cycling initiatives over the course of his term, saying he wants to make riding a bike the “safe and obvious” transport choice for all Londoners.

Two prestigious organisations have warned that England may have tipped into deforestation, with more trees being cut down than planted for the first time in possibly 40 years. “We are only planting 700 hectares (1,730 acres) a year, almost certainly less than we are felling,” said Austin Brady, the conservation director of the Woodland Trust charity which, with commercial forestry groups, wants government to pledge to meet its planting targets at a parliamentary debate. Stuart Goodall, chief executive of Confor, the trade association for the UK forestry industry, said planting was at its lowest level in England in more than 40 years. “Forests are being lost to development and infrastructure; we are cutting a lot and planting so few, so it may be that England is technically deforesting,” said Goodall. More here.

The level of household waste which is recycled in the UK has fallen for the first time, figures have shown. The Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs statistics show that 44.3% of household rubbish was recycled in 2015, down from 44.9% in 2014. It is the first fall since 2010 when monitoring began, though is still the second-highest annual rate on record. Waste company Biffa Municipal warned that recyclables that are not clean (where they are contaminated) can cause “lorry-loads” to be rejected. There is a European Union target for the UK to recycle at least 50% of household waste by 2020.
People working in green buildings think better in the office and sleep better when they get home, a new study has revealed. The research indicates that better ventilation, lighting and heat control improves workers’ performance and could boost their productivity by thousands of dollars a year. It also suggests that more subjective aspects, such as beautiful design, may make workers happier and more productive. An increasing number of green buildings are being constructed by developers as the cost and health benefits become better known, but this the first study to show such buildings can make their occupants brainier. The research analysed workers in certified green buildings in five US cities and compared them with other workers in the same cities employed in different offices owned by the same companies.

The world’s most widely used insecticides harm the ability of bees to vibrate flowers and shake out the pollen to fertilise crops, according to preliminary results from a new study. Some flowers, such as those of crops like tomatoes and potatoes, must be shaken to release pollen and bumblebees are particularly good at creating the buzz needed to do this. But the research shows that bumblebees exposed to realistic levels of a neonicotinoid pesticide fail to learn how to create the greatest buzz and collect less pollen as a result. The research is consistent with previous work that has shown neonicotinoid pesticides reduce learning and memory in bees. A moratorium on the use of three neonicotinoids on flowering crops was put in place in Europe in 2013 and will be reviewed next year.

The rogue practice of removing vital pollution filters from the exhausts of diesel vehicles has suffered a blow with the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) for the first time banning an advert for the service.

2016 EUROPEAN FESTIVAL AWARDS – the winners

efasThe 2016 EUROPEAN FESTIVAL AWARDS are done and dusted, with live performances from James TW, Roosevelt and The Children of the Revolution, and those winners are:

Best Small European Festival: SNOWBOMBING (Austria)

Best Line Up: PRIMAVERSA SOUND (Spain)

Brand Activation Award: PUKKLEPOP – Smart Energy Grid (Belgium)

Agent of the Year: NATASHA BENT (Coda Agency, UK)

Best Indoor Festival: REEPERBAHN Festival (Germany)

Best New Festival: MAD COOL (Spain)

Artist’s Favourite Festival: SZIGET (Hungary)

museHeadliner of the Year: MUSE

Health & Safety Award: SOUTHSIDE Festival (Germany)

Best Medium Sized Festival: PALEO FESTIVAL Nyon (Switzerland)

Green Operation award: SHAMBALA Festival (UK)

Newcomer of the Year: DUA LIPA

Promoter of the Year: AFTER ART (Poland)

Best Major Festival: ROCK WERCHTER (Belgium)

Award for Excellent and Passion: CHRISTOF HUBER

Lifetime Achievement Award: DAN PANAITESCU

A Greener Festival Award Winners Announced at EuroSonic

Greener Fesival Award winners Body & Soul, Das Fest and the Glastonbury Festival

Greener Fesival Award winners Body & Soul, Das Fest and the Glastonbury Festival

The European and US festivals who have won of the prestigious Greener Festival Award 2016 have been announced at the Eurosonic Noorderslag festival and conference in Groningen, the Netherlands. The winners are a select elite of sustainable events who have entered the Greener Festival Awards scheme, and submitted their environmental good practice to an external independent assessment. AGF’s Teresa Moore made three awards in person, to Body & Soul, Das Fest and the Glastonbury Festival. The Awards ceremony also announced a new initiative from the municipality of Utrecht, A Greener Festival and Green Events Nederland. Utrecht’s Hedwih Leijten and Green Events Paul Schurink were on hand to explain that Utrecht would now support festivals to enter the Greener Festival Awards scheme, and that the scheme is likely to spread to other Dutch municipalities.

The Greener Festival Award 2016 winners:

IMPROVING
Arla Food Fest
Body & Soul
La Sema
Metal Days
Nozstock – the Hidden Valley
Paradise City

COMMENDED
Bona Nit BCN
Das Fest
Extrema Outdoors
Greenbelt Festival
Kew the Music
Liberation Festival
Malmofestivalen
Northside Festival
Primavera Sound
Wood Festival

HIGHLY COMMENDED
Cambridge Folk Festival
DGTL
Glastonbury Festival
Green Music Festival
Heart of Glass Heart of Gold
Oya Festival
Welcome to the Future

OUTSTANDING
Boom Festival
We Love Green