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Simple tips to help you be a greener festival-goer

26th June 2019

Festivals across the UK have launched a campaign asking retailers to stop selling single-use tents to help reduce plastic waste earlier this month.

The Association of Independent Festivals (AIF) – an organisation that represents and empowers independent UK festivals like Shambala, Boomtown and Boardmasters – is urging retailers to stop marketing and selling tents as single-use items.

Last year, around 90 per cent of tents used at festivals were left behind – it’s time to change this but also go beyond and be a greener festival goer. If you’re attending a festival this summer, follow these simple tips will help you become a greener festival-goer;

Meeting your friends there?

Why not consider getting a coach there (a lot of festivals offer them!) or lift share. By travelling together, you can help reduce the amount of CO2 emitted.

Take a reusable cup (or buy a souvenir one!).

Most festivals are tackling single-use plastic, starting with one of the most plastic waste generating areas – the bar. A lot of festivals are now offering you the chance to purchase a reusable bar cup, which sometimes has some sort of design that reflects that event. Before you head of, check out your festivals website and see if they are offering this service. If not, why not bring your own?

Glastonbury earlier in the year announced that you will be unable to purchase single-use plastic bottles at this year’s festival.  For those wishing to drink water, which they highly recommend, they are encouraging festival-goers to use reusable water bottles and refill it at one of the hundreds of free water taps around the festival.

Buy smarter.

You are considering shedding out £20 for a tent that is unlikely to withstand the unpredictable weather of the British Summertime, so at the end of the festival you’re going to just chuck away. If you’re going with a group of friends, why not club together to purchase a more substantial tent that will not only accommodate you all but also last a long, long time; therefore, being more sustainable!

Waste not, want not.

Don’t just chuck your litter on the ground, seek out and use recycling and composting facilities, plus go above and beyond and pick up litter that you see. Some festivals have brought a gamifying element to their festival, including Shambala, Reading, Leeds and Festival, by charging deposits for cups and bottles. If you collect enough discarded empties and bring them back, you could get some merch or a fresh beer.

How Viridor are supporting events, festivals and attendees…

Viridor and Manchester Pride

Viridor have provided waste management to our partners IDEAL FM and Manchester Pride for more than five years. During the event, 54 tonnes of general waste has gone to our Energy Recovery Centre in Runcorn, where waste is given a new life in the form of electricity. 10 tonnes of recyclates are removed and recycled across Viridor sites following the event and 30 boxes of wristbands are securely shredded after the event.

Our trucks head out to the city at 5am to 9am and 6pm to 11pm during the event, clearing the streets ready for the festivities. We have a specially designed truck that goes out during the event, showing our support for pride.

Viridor and Edinburgh Fringe

An additional 500,000 people flock to Edinburgh to enjoy the festival. Over the festival period, there is a very significant spike in the need of our customers which include the tourism and hospitality sector.

Viridor currently collects all of Edinburgh’s glass from public glass bins and bottles banks. As people enjoy the festival, more and more glass bottles are used, and we see an additional 500 tonnes of glass being collected during the festival also reflecting an increase in material from pubs, clubs and local authorities.

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