‘Towards Zero Waste Festivals’ Report Highlights Waste Management Challenges

March 29, 2023
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© Lenscap Photography / Unsplash

Live music industry stakeholders published a report highlighting the challenges and environmental benefits of waste management at UK festivals. The ‘Towards Zero Waste Festivals’ report used specialist knowledge from industry players like Festival Republic and sustainability-forward org Vision: 2025 to provide solutions for event organizers. 

Environmental consultancy Resource Futures created the report to shed light on recurring issues outdoor festivals face around waste. Key highlights include banning problem materials, separating food waste, and encouraging reuse. 

According to the report, UK festivals produce around 25,800 tonnes of waste yearly. Management and reduction are restorative practices, but festival organizers deal with challenges such as lack of standardization, waste contractor reluctance, and limited food waste systems. 

The report further highlights key areas organizers can focus on to reduce environmental impact: 

  • Create a Materials Policy to manage waste reduction to increase recycling and reuse.
  • Waste data capture and reporting and baseline setting.
  • Strategic placement and emptying of bins. 
  • Audience communications to positively impact behaviour onsite.

A climate change specialist from nonprofit Julie’s Bicycle describes the zero waste report as a “valuable tool.” 

“There are some useful quick wins to improve efficiency and clear next steps for collective action to improve industry understanding and move toward more consistent approaches across the industry for everyone’s benefit.”

The ‘Towards Zero Waste Festivals’ report was funded by Dixon Foundation and supported by sustainability experts and industry members like Native Events, Sustainable Sidekicks, and Julie’s Bicycle. 

You can read the full report here


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