Summer Sonic Keeps Cool

Creativeman Productions, the organizers of the Summer Sonic festival in Tokyo and Osaka the weekend of Aug. 13-14, was faced with a challenge this year.

Following the failure of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear reactor as a result of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, the government has called on businesses and households to cut back on power consumption.

The response has been remarkable, with energy savings of up to 15 percent even though most of the archipelago was hit by a record heat wave during August.

The challenge for Creativeman was to reduce power consumption during Summer Sonic. Unlike many summer rock festivals, a good deal of SS is held indoors.

At the Tokyo end, four of the seven stages are located in the Makuhari Messe Convention Center.

Consequently, in order to ensure the health and safety of festivalgoers, air conditioning would have to be set at a suitable level, with savings made in other areas.

Thermostats in the headquarters and dressing room areas were set at 28 degrees centigrade (82.4 F), while lighting was reduced backstage in concourses and toilets.

As a result, the festival was able to reduce electricity usage by 30 percent.

In addition, power for the stages as well as for the concessions was supplied by Ground Power Unit trucks, and during load-in and load-out air conditioning was turned off and lighting reduced by one-third.