Green Guardians 2023: Octopus, REVERB, Satis & Fy
Welcome to the third part of IQ Magazine’s 2023 Green Guardians – our annual recognition of those eco-warriors and innovators at the forefront of the battle to make the live entertainment industry more sustainable.
The Green Guardians is spearheaded by IQ and an international panel of sustainability experts to highlight and congratulate companies and organisations who are improving the live music business when it comes to being more environmentally friendly.
This year’s list includes 20 entries across a wide range of event suppliers, campaigners, and solutions providers, all of whom are working tirelessly to reduce the carbon footprint of the live entertainment business.
IQ will publish entries across all categories over the coming days. Catch up on the previous instalment profiling Eviny, GMC Events, LOTUS Producciones, Morgenwelt and Music Declares Emergency here.
Octopus is an online marketplace for trading second-hand professional equipment in categories like audio, lighting, staging, video etc. The company believes that there is way too much good and functional equipment simply just stored away, gathering dust, in warehouses – or even worse: at the landfill. Equipment that might be old and out-dated for a certain application could turn out to be just the right fit for another: this is where Octopus comes in. Trading second-hand gear is good for the wallet – and the environment!
Octopus, launched in April 2022, is run by a Norwegian production company called Spectre, who continuously adds features and updates functionality.
Spectre exec Frode Eggum Have, tells IQ that most deals are straight B2B, “but we also have quite a few freelance technicians on both sides of the trade.” He continues, “The size of the businesses that use Octopus vary from freelancer all the way up to larger rental houses with 100+ employees. We also have special features made
for brokers, and we see that some of the bigger deals are often done with a broker sitting between the buyer and the seller.”
Overdrive Energy Solutions is committed to reducing and even- tually eliminating diesel generators in live events.
Founded by veteran production staff with sustainability engineering backgrounds, the company’s systems serve the demands of touring and festivals while reducing their carbon footprint. These solutions allow for much more flexible power layouts, reducing the cost and complexity of power distribution, making sites safer and healthier for artists, staff, and audiences alike.
For 2023, Overdrive has been focused on demonstrating sustaina- ble energy’s practical benefits, deploying the largest temporary solar farm ever used in North America for Willie Nelson’s Luck Reunion, which saw a 95% reduction in diesel use compared to previous years. Afterwards, Overdrive went to Coachella/Stagecoach, where it replaced generators at 14 remote locations with solar/battery systems, saving hundreds of gallons of fuel and reducing production workload.
Overdrive next went to Shoreline Amphitheatre for the Google I/O conference, where the attendee registration area used onsite battery/solar systems for sound, lighting, computers, communication gear, and restroom trailers. Overdrive also completed its first touring project by providing sustainable energy for the VIP activation on Dead & Company’s Final Tour.
In August 2023, Overdrive once again deployed the largest solar field yet for a North American concert, with over 60 kW feeding 1.4 mW of energy storage. This ran the floor package for Billie Eilish’s headliner set at Lollapalooza completely with energy captured onsite.
Leading the green music movement since 2004, REVERB partners with artists, festivals, and venues to reduce their environmental footprint while empowering millions of fans to take action on today’s most pressing environmental issues.
Working with artist partners like Billie Eilish, The 1975, Odesza, Harry Styles, Dave Matthews Band, Boygenius, Jack Johnson, The Lumineers, Dead & Company, Tame Impala, and many more, REVERB has created and executed comprehensive sustainability and fan engagement programmes on over 350 tours, 60 festivals, and 7,000 concerts. Positive impacts to date include neutralising 375,000+ tons of CO2e, raising over $12m for environmental causes, hosting over 5,000 NGOs in fan-facing Action Villages, and preventing the use of over 4m single-use plastic bottles at concerts.
REVERB recently launched the Music Decarbonization Project to fund and advance innovative climate solutions that directly eliminate carbon emissions created by the music industry. In 2023, this music industry-supported campaign focused on replacing highly polluting diesel generators with solar-charged battery systems – creating the largest 100% solar-powered festival main stage in North America at Willie Nelson’s Luck Reunion; next-generation solar-powered festival light towers at Coachella; and integrating solar-charged battery systems for Billie Eilish’s headline set at Lollapalooza.
Satis & Fy have been active in the live music industry for more than 25 years. With ten offices across Germany, the Netherlands, and the USA, the company looks after numerous touring acts, some of whom they have been involved with since their beginnings in the business. They also count the likes of Rock am Ring and Rock im Park among their clients.
The company employs teams of experienced and highly specialised sound engineers, lighting, media and stage designers, as well as stocking touring road-and rider-suitable equipment from various brand-name manufacturers. Additionally, Satis & Fy boast extensive rehearsal studios and offer access to a complete equipment pool.
The company’s philosophy is that sustainability should not be an abstract concept but rather one filled with life. It therefore reviews all facets of its actions in an effort to try to have a more sustainable effect. All of its departments join forces to contribute to this effort, putting the environment, society, economy, and culture at the heart of every project it undertakes.
Founded by Maggie Baird, mother of Billie Eilish and Finneas, Support + Feed combats the climate crisis and food insecurity by working toward a global shift to an equitable plant-based food system. Driving culture change through multiple strategies, the programme has reached global audience awareness of 95m, and delivered more than 300,000 urgently needed meals and pantry items through a consistent presence in 11 major US cities and through partnerships in the EU, UK, and Australia, with a growing footprint in London.
Artist collabs have included working with Janelle Monáe’s Wondalunch team to deliver more than 4,000 meals and pantry items in Los Angeles; going on world tour with artists such as Billie Eilish and Paramore to share the organisation’s calls to action and featured food drives; and supporting Pharrell’s Something in the Water Festival and presence in Virginia Beach with a meal programme and plant-based educational programming.
Alongside Billie Eilish and Reverb, Support + Feed co-presented the first Overheated climate summit in 2022, a two-day event held at The O2 Arena. In August, Overheated returned to London at Flipper’s Roller Boogie Palace to bring together climate activists, musicians, and designers to discuss the climate crisis and the work that is making a meaningful difference. Sessions discussed the impact of our food systems, sustainable fashion, eco anxiety, technological innovations, and actions we can all take to mitigate climate change.
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