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A party in the green zone

Energy efficiency and carbon management award Runner-up: Rocking the Daisies Music & Lifestyle Festival

 “It is emphasised through the implementation of greening best practice.”

The annual festival at Cloof Wine Estate in Cape Town, now in its seventh year, is South Africa’s first and only green music festival, said Fulton. “We focus on an entire lifestyle element as opposed to just music and entertainment, and this has naturally progressed to creating awareness around environmentally conscious living.”

All electricity is bought before the festival from wind energy generated at the wind farm near Darling. The organisers also work with Food & Trees for Africa to neutralise any carbon emissions by planting hundreds of trees in the Darling and Malmesbury area.

“The Icologie green audit last year calculated the total carbon equivalent produced at the festival as 372.2 tonnes CO2 equivalent,” said Fulton. “In order to offset this, Food & Trees for Africa need to plant 359.3 trees this year.”

Biodiesel generators are used to supplement traditional energy usage and transport systems that are carbon-efficient are encouraged, and where possible provided. Tickets are emailed and sent by MMS to festival-goers’ cellphones so they need not print their tickets.

Innovations for the next generation

All litter at the festival is recycled where possible and water conservation measures include banning pollution and bottled water. Black water from the ablutions is removed and distributed in a safe and sustainable manner.

In 2010, festivalgoers who brought old goods for recycling were rewarded for making a difference to the environment. And the year before that, more than 10 000 pairs of jeans were collected and distributed to underprivileged communities.

Last year, festivalgoers were asked to donate R50 each to provide shoes for a child and sponsors paid for their own accommodation.

For these and other measures, the festival has won two awards in a row at the South African Climate Change Leadership Awards. “We entered the Greening the Future Awards because we would like to try to make people more aware of our greening initiatives – it adds credibility to the festival,” said Fulton.

Cloof Wine Estate, the festival venue, is an energy-efficient farm and it has partnered with CapeNature to become a voluntary conservation site under its stewardship programme.

“We are aware of the impact that a festival of this nature has on the environment,” said Fulton. “We then look at ways in which to combat this impact – either by avoiding it or by offsetting it in some way.”

The Greening judges praised the festival’s “innovations for the next generation. These types of energy-saving and carbon management interventions should be replicated at all events,” they said.

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