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Byron Shire
June 15, 2024

More than the grass is Greener at Splendour

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Splendour In The Grass has received a highly commended award for their 2012 event at Belongil Fields, Byron Bay, from the prestigious international Greener Festival Awards.

Ben Challis, co-founder of A Greener Festival, said, ‘This award embodies the spirit of sustainability that festivals all over the world aspire to achieve. However, it is Splendour In The Grass that has gone above and beyond the commercial aspects of greening to produce a remarkable event with a true ecological awareness.’

‘We have gone from a commended to highly commended award and now aim for the outstanding award next year,’ said environmental scientist Mat Morris, who has managed Splendour’s environmental programs for the past ten years.

‘Outstanding’ awards were given in Europe and the UK only. Other festivals in Australia to receive highly commended awards were The Falls Festival in Victoria and Island Vibe on North Stradbroke Island. Commended awards were given to Woodford Folk Festival, WOMADelaide and Bluesfest.

Some of Splendour’s many winning environmental initiatives:

• Murf the recycling beast This impressive green beast (Material Recovery Facility) sorts recyclable materials such as cans, plastic bottles and cardboard from general waste through a series of conveyor belts, sorting lines and balers.

• Carbon-offset tickets Splendour was the first contemporary music festival in Australia to offer a carbon-offset ticket, which over the past five years alone has offset over 3,440 tonnes of carbon and resulted in $100,438 being invested in renewable wind-energy generation. The amount of carbon offset is roughly equivalent to taking 1,000 cars off our roads for a year.

• Green Chiefs and Eco Cops Environmental students lived in tipis, operating across the campgrounds and the festival itself, focused on recycling and general waste practices for patrons.

• Traffic reduction Initiatives included staging the arrival and departure of event patrons from Byron, free parking for cars with three or more passengers, car share riding via Jay Ride website and extensive use of shuttle buses.

A Greener Festival Ltd is a not-for-profit company committed to helping events and festivals around the world adopt environmentally efficient practices.

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  1. All very good but all of this does nothing to alter the fact that the festival generates an enormous amount of noise pollution and people movement pollution in a very delicate site that is critical to migratory birds and other species. That side, the underbelly if you like, is now a living scientific experiment underway…..just that in this case, there is no going back to the drawing board if it fails.


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