2000 Trees, the first music festival to go Climate Positive in the UK

In July 2019 Clean Earth Collective ran a carbon audit at 2000 Trees music festival. 2000 Trees is a 12,000 people, 3 day, music festival with customer camping in the Cotswolds. 120+ underground rock and indie bands. Previous bands that have played 2000trees include Enter Shikari, Frank Turner, At The Drive In, Twin Atlantic, Frightened Rabbit, Slaves, Nothing But Thieves, Blood Red Shoes, Band of Skulls, The Bronx, Wolf Alice, Public Service Broadcasting, 65daysofstatic, Lower Than Atlantis, And So I Watch You From Afar, Future of the Left, Dan le Sac vs Scroobius Pip and Hundred Reasons.

The Clean Earth Collective ran a full event carbon audit for the festival on the pre-Live days checking all production onto site, assessed event energy consumption, artist travel, customer travel, bar logistics and food traders. Plus post event analysis of energy usage with the event organisers. We also managed a reusable cup scheme for the bars for the Live dates. The reusable cup scheme generated a small profit which allowed us to offset the full carbon footprint of the festival by investing in ethical carbon credits.

This was the first time that we had attempted carbon offsetting at a music festival and we believe it is the first time that an event’s carbon emissions have been offset via the bars’ reusable cup scheme. 2000 Trees Festival also offset 3.5 years of historical carbon emissions, making 2000 Trees the first climate positive festival in the UK.

Reduction of carbon emissions must come first. 2000 Trees has strong local support, key products like beer are brewed locally and the majority of on-site traders travel less than 100 miles to attend the event. Event production is well sourced and efficient. Waste is well managed. Customer car sharing is encouraged and public transport usage is high. These are key factors which reduce the event’s unavoidable carbon emissions.

Festivals don’t actually emit a large amount of carbon emissions, which is excellent. Well organised festivals are working to energy efficiency principles even though they are temporary and power hungry gatherings.

Infrastructure: 7872.4433
Energy, Water & Waste: 17974.3887
Traders: 1928.0240
Bars: 2349.8334
Audience Travel: 122700.0000
Total KgCO2e: 152824.6893
Total Tonne 152.8247

The festival produced 152.8 tonnes of unavoidable carbon emissions. We were surprised in our findings as we assumed that the volume of KgCO2e would be higher for a gathering of this size. Our onsite carbon audit gave us accurate figures and the result highlights that the cost of making a music festival carbon neutral is low when considering the physical size of these type of events and numbers of people involved. This efficiency comes from a forward thinking production process that is designed to operate with the local economy and minimise energy usage.

NB: There are also two unknown benefits as we assume customers will be using less power by camping in a field over the weekend than staying at home. Plus with the increased popularity of homegrown festivals as a family experience, they have the potential to be swapped for other holiday time. If a festival was to swerve potential customers from flying abroad then it would have achieved a great, but unknown benefit of lessening overall worldwide emissions.

2000 Trees Festival – https://www.twothousandtreesfestival.co.uk

Related Links: https://www.bigissue.com/latest/environment/how-2000-trees-became-rocks-most-eco-friendly-festival/