Yourope Releases Green Festival Roadmap

Glastonbury Festival 2023 Day 1
The term sustainability encompasses far more than just waste management, but waste management is a large part of sustainability. This picture shows overflowing rubbish bins on day one of Glastonbury Festival 2023, June 21, 2023. (Photo by Kate Green/Getty Images)

European festival association Yourope developed and published its so-called “European Green Festival Roadmap 2030,” aimed to give European festivals and events “a reliable guide for sustainable actions, including measures they will need to accomplish the inevitable process of transformation until the end of the decade.”

The guidelines laid out in the roadmap are based on the EU’s Green Deal, which wants to cut emissions in Europe by at least 55% by 2030. The roadmap “also considers the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and industry requirements,” and is “the result of a collaboration with experts from A Greener Future (AGF) and Greener Events Norway as well as Yourope’s GO Group (Green Operations Europe) think tank,” the press release continues.

As Yourope states, “to bring about the necessary change towards more sustainable events, it is important to set clear goals, think large and long-term.” The “European Green Festival Roadmap 2030” wants to achieve that by providing festivals with “a comprehensive framework for the ambitious sustainable improvement of cultural events” across seven fields of actions.

These actions range from management structures to specific practical measures in the creation and production process. The roadmap is public and free to use for any European festival or cultural event, as well as anybody beyond the boarders of the EU taking inspiration from it.

It is “the first pan-European publication of its kind to be jointly developed and published by and for the festival sector,” by Yourope’s own admission.

Screenshot 2023 07 17 at 14.14.16
European festival association Yourope published its “European Green Festival Roadmap 2030”.

Holger Jan Schmidt, Yourope general secretary and GO Group co-founder, commented, “Improving our festivals and increasing sustainability throughout the industry is an ongoing topic for Yourope and also for me personally. That’s why it’s a particular pleasure to present the European Green Festival Roadmap as the icing on the cake of tools we recently published – all are open source, accessible to everyone and transferable to other cultural areas. We believe that the roadmap is a big step in the only right direction. Also, it serves as an excellent basis for further exciting and helpful projects.”

Claire O’Neill, CEO of A Greener Future, added, “After nearly two decades working with festivals worldwide for sustainability, we’re really happy to harness and share learnings in this European Green Festival Roadmap with Yourope. The roadmap helps prioritize and simplify the actions individual festivals need to take, and shines a light on areas for collective effort by the industry and beyond.”

Linnéa Svensson of Greener Events Norway, and a GO Group co-founder, said, “Climate change is already upon us. Heavy rain and severe drought are becoming increasingly normal, which tells us there’s no time to lose. It is time to act now – and this roadmap will guide you to get started or even to get more advanced. If you haven’t already, just start by starting!”

The roadmap is part of Yourope’s 3F project, which stands for “Future-Fit Festivals”, a three-year project funded with EU money, aimed at making festivals more resilient, responsible, and relevant going forward.

The “European Green Festival Roadmap 2023” can be downloaded here.

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