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Coldplay, Live Nation and more co-sign on sustainability study

A comprehensive study of the live music industry’s carbon footprint will be conducted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and co-funded by Coldplay, Live Nation and Warner Music Group (WMG).

The report will suggest practical solutions to reduce the environmental impact of live music events “at every level,” from pubs and clubs to stadiums.

The partnership will kick off with an initial research phase focused on the UK and the US which will be presented as an Assessment Report of Live Music and Climate Change, anticipated to be completed in July 2024.

The report will aim to develop a comprehensive assessment of the relationship between live music and climate change, identify key areas where the industry and concertgoers can make tangible improvements to reduce emissions and provide a detailed analysis of the latest developments in green technology and sustainable practices.

MIT’s Environmental Solutions Initiative (MIT ESI), a leading climate and environmental academic research and solutions group, will recommend scientifically informed actions and policies that can be replicated across the live music industry to reduce its environmental footprint and establish a sustainable future for live events.

“I applaud the spirit of openness and collaboration that will allow us to identify specific challenges”

MIT Prof. John E. Fernandez, director of the ESI, says: “I’m delighted that we will be working with our partners to co-create recommendations for a sustainable future in music. As well as jointly funding the research, I applaud the spirit of openness and collaboration that will allow us to identify specific challenges in areas such as live event production, freight and audience travel, and recommend solutions that can be implemented across the entire industry to address climate change.”

Coldplay launched their current Music Of The Spheres world tour with a pledge to cut emissions by 50%. In June last year, the group issued an update on the tour’s sustainability initiatives, revealing that, on a show-by-show comparison, it has so far produced 47% less CO2e emissions than their previous A Head Full of Dreams stadium tour in 2016/17.

More than seven million trees have already been planted around the world, with one being planted for each concert-goer.

In 2022, Live Nation partnered with Coldplay and major public transportation providers to offer fans free or discounted rides to incentivise and encourage green travel. The initiative supported a 59% average increase in public transport ridership on show days across four US cities.

“We’re proud to share best practices and solutions developed by Green Nation in this report,” says Lucy August-Perna, director of global sustainability, Live Nation. “Helping accelerate sustainable practices benefits everyone who enjoys live music, while ensuring a strong future for the industry. We look forward to sharing the report with industry partners and fans alike.”

Interested in the intersection of sustainability and live events? Don’t miss out on the 16th edition of the Green Events and Innovations conference. For more information, click here.


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