Throwing a festival comes with roughly a million considerations. Beyond the obvious concerns like a strong lineup, the perfect venue, the right artwork and a fair ticket price, organisers also have to consider things like plumbing, available healthcare, and hopefully, the damage a festival can potentially do to a local ecosystem.
Environmental concerns have been raised time and time again in regards to festivals. Whether it’s a staggering amount of rubbish being left on the grounds or even the environmental horror glitter can cause, it’s in the hands of our best festivals to start making changes.
The time for festivals to disregard the environment is long gone. Luckily, Australia’s best are leading the charge to go green.
Return To Rio and Subsonic Music Festival are recent standouts. And funnily enough, it was at their bars that some of the more progressive changes occurred. 42BELOW Vodka had a presence at both festivals, so hats off to them for playing a part in these fixes.
Recycling accounts for a huge amount of waste after any festival. Leftover cups, cans and other bar paraphernalia is a massive part of this, which is why Return To Rio stocked eco-friendly, biodegradable cups. Meanwhile Subsonic even instituted a ‘Keep Cup’ system, offering $1 off the next drink if you returned your cup to the bar. Both of these initiatives were spearheaded by 42BELOW.
A quick browse around the websites for some of our country’s biggest festivals shows that we’re currently in a great place. Splendour in the Grass, Falls Festival, and Lost Paradise all have a prominent sustainability clause, outlining the events’ responsibilities and promises where the environment is concerned.
Special mention goes to Lost Paradise, who have upped their game each and every year the festival has been going. They’ve been the architects of the change as well, firstly acknowledging the damage they had caused (and remedied) in the past and instituting a variety of changes to make sure it never happens again.
Whether it’s something as small as solar-powered phone charging stations or something as far-reaching as an entire sustainability policy, there’s no longer any excuses for a festival to escape these considerations.
And one last thing, while the organisers themselves stand at the forefront of the battle, you have a part to play too. Don’t leave your shitty tent at the festival site. Use the recycling facilities these events provide. These festivals can put forward thousands of fantastic ideas, but it’s up to you to take part in them.