Environmental Review 2022
The Music Barn Festival is held on private farmland. The management of any large scale event is fraught with difficulties but one of the biggest to consider is the event’s impact on both the local surrounds and the broader environment.
For the past few years we have looked closely at improving our environmental conservational efforts and continue to make changes to becoming a carbon neutral festival. Here are some of the initiatives we are taking…
Tickets for Trees initiative. In 2020 we planted trees for every ticket that was bought. The trees were planted on land near to the festival site. Although we are a small event with a relatively small impact on global climate, we still want to do our bit and so will be replicating the policy in 2022. Using data from the U.S. Forest Service, they estimated the amount each tree was likely to sequester. The average was 88 pounds per tree per year which equates to almost 2 tons over 40 years. Having undertaken an exercise to investigate the size of our carbon footprint it was concluded that the event produces around 12 tons of carbon. Therefore, we would need to plant around 400 trees to be carbon neutral over a single year. (It is recognised that some of the data we used was averaged across similar events and not specific to the Music Barn.)
Transport. The events industry creates a significant amount of emissions caused by transporting attendees to events or between venues. We encourage attendees to travel to our festival by public transport (there is a bus route into the nearby village of Cranford) or sharing cars/taxis as much as possible. If you have a group of friends who are attending the festival, why not book a mini-bus to transport the lot of you in one! It’s fun to go in a group and would really help us reduce emissions from individual car journeys. Alternatively use car-sharing apps, such as BlaBlaCar or Liftshare app to find other attendees who are willing to share a car with you.
LED Lighting LEDs work like solar panels in reverse, use 90% less energy than incandescent bulbs for the same amount of light without the toxic mercury, and last much longer than incandescent bulbs. LEDs transfer 80% of their energy use into creating light, rather than heat for other technologies, reduces electricity consumption and air-conditioning loads. At the festival we are working with our AV contractor MJN Entertainment to ensure that as many of the event’s lights use LED bulbs instead of incandescent bulbs.
Single Use Plastics. Since 2018 we have been using a reusable cup scheme. This dramatically reduced the amount of single use plastic cups we are sending to landfill. Guests buy one of our Music Barn reusable cups at the start of the event and return to the bar or drinking water station to fill up throughout the event. If you have been to one of our events before and have one of our highly collectible cups, then please bring them along in 2022.
Alongside single use cups are an array of other plastics that the festival is bearing down on. This includes the use of zip ties which are often used for a short period and then discarded once finished with. Again we are working closely with all of our contractors to ensure that zip ties are not used unless absolutely necessary and if used then recycled at the end of use.
Biodegradable disposables. All our food and drink vendors are asked to use biodegradable disposables or re-usable plates and utensils on stalls. We have a very supportive group of caterers who use materials such as wood, banana leaves or bamboo in all of their single use products.
Site Clean Up. We want to return the festival site to how it was before the event. That means returning the grassland area across the site including the car park and camping site to a state that we found it prior to the event. After the festival the whole site is scoured for rubbish by our clean-up crew. You can help too by using our range of rubbish bins or taking rubbish home with you from the car park or campsite. The litter crew will also extend their clear up to the entrance way and the roadside immediately outside the site.
Drinking Water. We are striving to reduce our single use plastics. One of the biggest users of plastic bottles is Mineral Water suppliers. To this end we have installed drinking stations with fresh water around the site. It is free to use, and we encourage guests to help themselves.
Waste Recycling. Even though we are pushing down on our single use plastics there is still always some waste at the event (predominantly beer cans, biodegradable plates and utensils, along with some glass bottles). All of this is sent to our waste handling partner Baileys Waste Management. Baileys are a locally based firm who manage all of our waste after the event, sorting the rubbish at their site in Corby to ensure that at least 75% is diverted away from landfill. When at the event please use one of the many rubbish bins to ensure that the site is kept as clean as possible.