Net Zero Emissions By 2030: UK Live Music Sector Launches Climate Campaign

As festivalgoers depart, the cleanup begins.
Matt Cardy/Getty Images
– As festivalgoers depart, the cleanup begins.
This photo was taken in front of the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury, June 26, 2017.

The UK’s live music sector today launched an industry campaign to deliver climate action, setting its commitment to reach net zero emissions by the year 2030.

The campaign is spearheaded by LIVE Green, the sustainability arm of live music umbrella trade body LIVE, officially formed at the beginning of 2021. 
The campaign “builds on significant efforts across the sector to boost sustainability, ranging from the end of single use plastic at festivals to sector-wide efforts to reduce the environmental impact of touring,” according to the announcement.
The group intends to “identify and signpost how live music businesses can accelerate their transition to a low carbon future, setting out a roadmap for action in line with the Paris Agreement on climate change.”
Previous research has shown that live concerts and performances generate 400,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions every year, with accommodation, merchandise, and promotions all contributing further.
In addition to the efforts already being made across the sector to address these issues, LIVE Green will facilitate “further action and engagement through the provision of practical resources, on-going knowledge sharing, education and training alongside measurement tools to allow the business to study its progression towards a climate positive position.”
All 13 association members of LIVE have ratified the Beyond Zero Declaration, a voluntary sector-specific commitment to deliver measurable and targeted action on climate change, with the ultimate aim of reaching net zero emissions by 2030. 
John Langford
– John Langford
COO of AEG Europe, and Chair of LIVE Green.

Signatories to the declaration agree to:

·         Work with LIVE Green to set reduction targets and reduce operational and business travel Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions, reporting on progress annually;
·         Develop a net zero roadmap and action plan – taking responsibility for actions in energy, waste, procurement, transport, food and governance;
·         Understand and define emissions within value chains, follow best practice to affect change in areas outside of direct control and collaborate with suppliers and clients to reduce them; and
·         Ensure staff undertake climate education and have an ongoing commitment to knowledge sharing within the live music sector and beyond.
“The initiative will also provide research, expertise and cross-industry innovation in order to support the sector’s transition to a regenerative future,” the campaign announcement states.
Members of LIVE Green’s working group include Julie’s Bicycle, AGreenerFestival, Powerful Thinking, Vision: 2025, The Tour Production Group and a collective of like-minded professionals from the live music sector.
John Langford, AEG Europe COO and Chair of LIVE Green, commented, “We are now at a tipping point for our climate: this is not a rehearsal. We want to tap into the power of music to help deliver a step-change in the environmental impact of our sector – from carbon emissions through to plastic waste – helping us demonstrate that moving faster towards decarbonization is a route to a competitive advantage.”
Tom Schroeder, Partner at Paradigm Talent Agency, said, “There can be no shying away from the environmental impact of our global business, and although there has been significant progress across the live music sector, now is the time to accelerate our efforts.
“By bringing together the active specialists and initiatives under one banner, LIVE Green is pioneering a means to fast-track decarbonisation across the sector through education, awareness and tangible action. We look forward to building on the sector’s progress so far, to make our low carbon future a reality.”
LIVE Green also aims to ensure meaningful climate investments are made to achieve the sector’s collective targets in the short, medium and long term, establishing an industry-wide approach on permanent emissions drawdown by 2030.