5 Ways to Go Green at a Music Festival
Music festivals provide a space for people to gather and forget about all of their worries as they lose themselves in live music and the great outdoors. However, they’re also notorious for the waste that builds up as a result. So please, live your best life and enjoy the fest, but maybe keep one of those worries in mind, and follow these easy tips to keep the Earth beneath you happy and healthy.
1. Do Away with Fast Fashion
We’re all tempted by it. Flower crowns, 70’s style sunglasses, bell bottom yoga pants, crop tops with fringe, and over-the-top sparkly fits are all the rage of huge festivals like Coachella and have seeped into festival fashion trends all over the nation. However, because many festival-goers are looking for outfits they likely won’t ever wear again, brands are encouraged to produce cheap clothes in large quantities that aren’t easily recyclable. When it comes to getting ready for the festival, plan or even buy a cute outfit, but make sure it’s something you’ll wear again or pass along to someone else!
2. Speaking of Sparkly Fits, Let’s Discuss Glitter.
Body glitter is fun and it makes everyone look their glowy-best; however, it basically solely consists of trash that ends up in our oceans. In fact, another term for the shiny stuff is “microplastics.” But wait, this doesn’t mean you have to give up your adorable sparkly look or even glitter altogether. Biodegradable glitter has made its way into the market and is now offered by various brands, like this one > EcoStardust who sell and promote #GlitterWithoutTheLitter.
3. BYORWB (Bring Your Own Reusable Water Bottles)
It’s the suggestion everyone makes, and you probably know it by now, but it’s also one of the most vital: don’t forget your reusable water bottle. Not only does this save the Earth, but it saves you money, too. Forgetting your water bottle at a festival will probably run you about $16 a day, at least, because let’s be real… If you have to buy water, you’ll be paying $4 for each Dasani. So, what if you want alcohol or a beverage that’s not water? You came here to have a good time, after all right? Be sure to ask if the venue offers reusable cups or if they have souvenir cups! The UK is moving toward no single-use plastics at fests, and the US should follow suit. In the event that you have to buy a plastic cup, take the extra minute to find a recycling bin near you.
3. Share Your Ride
Take an Uber or Lyft to a festival, and opt to share your ride with other passengers! You can save money on parking, gas and be eco-friendly at the same time! If you’re able to take a form of public transportation to or near the festival, this is a great option as well. Most festivals block off many streets near the venue, requiring attendees to walk a large portion of the way regardless of your travel method. So if you live close by a starting point, have friends meet you at your place, and walk over from there!
4. Go Veg For A Day (or Three)
Listen, we’re aware this is easier in Austin than in some other cities, but if you’re able to, opt-out on meat for your festival meals. We love a good burger as much as the next guy, but its no secret that the meat industry is a major cause of fresh water depletion and that raising the animals required to make that meat generates tons of greenhouse gases. So, just for the day or even for a meal or two, consider grabbing some plant-based protein as an alternative to meat. It doesn’t meat you have to give up that burger, you may be surprised at the meat-free foods you can find - it may even give you more energy throughout the day, too! (If possible, search for a compost for any leftovers!)
5. Encourage Your Friends
Possibly the most sustainable thing we can do is get others involved in sustainability. Encourage your friends to take the same steps as you. Have friends who are camping for the fest? Whether you’re among them or not, let them borrow your tent, or encourage everyone to pitch in on an Earth-friendly tent like these by MARS-1. Meet up with your friends at the person’s house that’s closest to the fest, run through your checklist: re-fillable bottle, wristbands, walking shoes & you’re ready to go!
It’s easy to walk into a place where you’re one person among thousands and feel like your actions are insignificant in the big scheme of things. However, it’s important to remember that everyone is likely thinking the same thing, and your sustainable actions could encourage others. Most importantly overall, leave nothing behind! Burning Man got it right with their “Leave No Trace” policy, and you can follow suit at any fest! We get it - sometimes, opting for that $20 tent or that plastic cup is necessary, but ensuring that you have a plan on how to dispose of your cup or keep your tent can go a long way. Be there for the outdoors, and they’ll always be there for you!