Green Music Ideas

Written by Austep Music, 2010

*The green music movement is well underway.

*Musicians have great influence over the masses. As trendsetters who influence culture (primarily youth, the decision makers of tomorrow), musicians can lead by example. As a collective, musicians have one of the most powerful voices on earth, and access to the ears of the global public. Music crosses all borders and boundaries.

*Music also has the power to shift perceptions of climate change from a purely scientific view, to emotional understanding, and thus action.

*Live music (especially audience travel) is the biggest polluter in the industry, so car-pooling (ideally through ticketing websites), using public transport, and maximising the efficiency of travel logistics must be encouraged. This is especially true in Australia because of the large distances we often travel.

*The music industry’s carbon footprint comes mostly from audience travel (around ½ of emissions), followed by CD lifecycle emissions, & venue energy use.

*CD lifecycle emissions are the second biggest GHG emitter in the music industry (as of 2010).

*Studies comparing the emissions from physical CDs versus digital downloads have produced conflicting evidence due to a lack of research into the impacts of digital music. Further research must be undertaken.

*Numerous studies have shown that using card packaging instead of plastic cases reduces GHG emissions by 95%. Furthermore, a detailed study carried by the ERA (Entertainment Retail Association) shows that more than half of music consumers would actually prefer card cases to plastic.

*The music industry should minimise production of packaging and marketing material.

*The music industry should help build infrastructure for clean renewable energy.

*Greening your office, venue, or studio primarily means being energy efficient, thus using less electricity and saving money.

*Auditing/measuring your energy use and carbon emissions will give you the information and hands-on understanding to take action, as well as providing the industry with crucial statistics.

*Suppliers generally only produce what we as consumers ask for.

*Raise awareness. You can spread the message directly (e.g. song lyrics or on stage), or simply lead by example and communicating your actions to the public.

*Offsetting does not mean you can pollute as much as you want. The first step is to avoid and reduce emissions. But some unavoidable emissions can be offset. Choose your offsett provider carefully.

*If you tell someone what to do they probably won’t want to do it. But if you ask them what we can all do and spark their curiosity, they come up the answers and are much more likely to act upon them.

Written by Austep Music, 2010