When the weather gets hot, millions of festivals-goers start to make their way across the globe. According to a report by Neilsen on music festivals, 32 million people go to at least one festival in the U.S. each year. On average, these people travel over 1,400 kilometres to attend.
What results is mounds of garbage and CO2 emissions released into our environment. Ecoseed.org reported 84,000 tons of carbon dioxide was emitted in the U.K. from diesel generators and trash from music festivals during 2012.
With a little planning and some creative ideas, you can easily make a difference in how much pollution you create this summer.
Here is 10 ways you can do your part to stay green at music festivals:
1) Use and wash your own dishware.
Most festivals will have water supplies like taps, pumps,or hoses for you to use. Try to avoid styrofoam or plastic bags if you can. One picnic set is sure to last you a couple festival seasons, saving you a few dollars each year.
2) Decorate a garbage can.
If you’ve ever been to music festivals you know the bins always seem to be full. Decorate a couple to keep at your site – one for garbage and one for recycling. It might encourage your neighbours to keep their spot clean as well. And, who doesn’t love having a memorable landmark to guide them back to their tent at the end of a the night.
3) Buy food from the farmers’ market.
Unfortunately not always found at every festival, these gems will help you avoid wasteful food packages alongside supporting local producers. So, don’t forget to look out for these as you travel to the show.
Travelling as a group is not only a great way to make memories, it’s eco-friendly. Look for carpool message boards or check social media for people heading to the same festival. Cheaper gas and less CO2 emissions is always a win-win.
It’s easy to pick up two or three cases of water bottles – the convenience is hard to beat. But, try using the permanent water wells on the festival grounds with your own reusable bottles. It will save you a couple dollars alongside avoiding tons of waste.
6) Have a “leave no trace” policy.
Make a pack with your friends to try and leave the place better than when you arrived. Rely on recycling instead of trash cans. Use reusable containers instead of food wrappers.
7) What you don’t take is almost as important as what you do take.
An easy rule to camping: avoid taking unnecessary things. One example is paper towel: try and use a cloth and water instead.
8) Try taking a car instead of a truck or van.
Bringing the 1976 Dodge wagon might seem fun, but probably not be the cleanest choice. Try putting a cargo rack on the top of a car instead to give you more room.
9) Avoid technology.
Try and not use too much power while you are camping. It’s not always easy, but it’s definitely an effective step to limiting your energy use.
10) Cook as much as you can.
Create your own meals instead of relying on the festival’s food stands. Soups, burgers, sandwiches – all easy things you can pack for your weekend. That being said, try to experience the festival as much as you can. Just remember to be conscious of how much you waste.