Monday 24th October 2016                 Change text size:

Glastonbury: A green festival

Glastonbury By neal whitehouse piper via Flickr

With Foo Fighters being confirmed as a headline act at Glastonbury this summer, we take a look at the steps the festival is taking to ensure it minimises its impact on the environment and encouraging festival goers to consider their effect of their decisions.

Last year the festival recycled half of all waste generated, from cans and glass to electronic equipment and wood. This year it is hoped that this can be increased to 60%, in total over 1,300 volunteers work on recycling during the event.

The festival has also introduced renewable energy, taking power from the sun directly to the stage. Solar power and green technology have been introduced to the Theatre & Circus and Shangri-la areas, whilst all cafes, stalls and stages above the Green Fields are powered by clean energy. Worthy Farm, where the festival is held, has also taken steps to install even more solar panels, generating enough to power around 40 homes each year.

Other measures the event has taken include only allowing compostable or re-useable plates and cutlery, reducing road deliveries, planting over 10,000 trees, and cutting the festival’s carbon footprint. The event also supports green organisation, such as WaterAid and Oxfam, and is the world’s biggest single regular donor to Greenpeace.

The festival’s organisers also actively encourage those attending the event to consider sustainability, urging them to take their tents and equipment home, rather than leaving them behind to end up as waste. Festival-goers are urged to use more sustainable ways of travelling to the site, such as bus and train, in 2015 the organisers aim for 40,000, almost a third of those attending the event, to arrive in this way.

The site contains two reservoirs to allow the festival to become more sustainable for water, but organisers add that this doesn’t mean they want to use lots more as “it is really important to conserve water”. The tap water at the event is also monitored and tested twice daily to try and encourage people to reduce their consumption of bottled water, cutting down on waste.

Photo: neal whitehouse piper via Flickr

Further reading:

War on plastic bottles declared at Glastonbury festival

Glastonbury festival site will remain free from fracking, Eavis family says

Glastonbury: animal rights activists seek festival ban for Metallica

2014 guide to the UK’s top sustainable and green festivals

Honing festival sustainability: from travel to renewable energy

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