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PR Wire: AGF Award

Rock the Green receives global recognition as one of the greenest festivals in the world

Rock the Green wins award for environmental impact

Rock the Green was recently named the winner of an A Greener Festival Award, a prestigious global award from A Greener Festival, a nonprofit that promotes sustainable efforts at music and arts events. The honor places Rock the Green as one of the greenest large-scale music festivals in the world.

Rock the Green was selected among 40 winners globally and just four from the United States. The festival received the Highly Commended rating for its significant efforts to reduce waste and engage fans. Brooks Stevens, Rock the Green board member, was in attendance to receive the award at the ceremony in London on December 3.

“While many music festivals implement environmentally-friendly practices, Rock the Green raises the bar with a holistic approach to sustainable event production to green the event from the ground up,” said Lindsay Stevens Gardner, founder and executive director, Rock the Green.
“We are thrilled to receive global recognition for these efforts, with hopes that our model can be reproduced elsewhere to inspire communities outside our own.”

During Rock the Green’s sophomore event in September 2012, 93 percent of the total waste was diverted from landfills. Concertgoers produced a mere 640 pounds of trash – enough to fill just 13 traditional trash cans. This is the equivalent to about one ounce of trash per attendee, as opposed to the average one pound of trash per fan at a typical festival. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, a music festival with a comparable number of attendees would produce more than four tons of waste.

In each of its first two years, Rock the Green reaped near-zero waste results exceeding 90 percent. Previous public information shared by other festivals placed the top festival recycling data near 80 percent.

“We are delighted that Rock the Green has achieved a rating of Highly Commended,” said Helen Wright, co-director and awards coordinator, A Greener Festival. “The entire Rock the Green team has demonstrated their dedication to reducing their impact and promoting this vision to their audience.”

In 2012, Rock the Green’s sustainable production efforts included, but were not limited to:

  • Waste reclamation stations collected 1,260 pounds of recyclables and 3,980 pounds of compostable materials.

  • Food grinding stations with stainless steel sink units provided by InSinkErator processed 3,000 pounds of food scraps to be converted into organic fertilizer.

  • Biodiesel generators used biodiesel fuel to power the festival’s main stage, production and vendor areas.

  • Bicycle pedal power provided energy for sound and lights on a side stage, which featured local musicians.

  • BPA-free water bottles, provided free-of-charge to all attendees, were filled with a collective 1,000 gallons of water at fresh water stations throughout the grounds, sparing the equivalent of 6,850 environmentally harmful water bottles.

  • Eco-friendly travel options, including a ride-share program, parking discounts for vehicles carrying four or more passengers and a free bicycle valet service, helped minimize the carbon footprint of attendees traveling to the festival.

  • Paperless, electronic tickets saved hundreds of reams of paper and thousands of dollars in manufacturing resources.

  • Compostable plates and napkins were used by all food and beverage vendors to serve healthy and sustainable food options.

  • Energy-efficient LED lighting was used to illuminate the main stage and tented areas after sundown.

“The A Green Festival Award is an unprecedented win for both Rock the Green and Milwaukee,” said Matt Howard, director, Office of Environmental Sustainability, City of Milwaukee. “This honor affirms our city as a leader in environmental sustainability and as a role model for other communities worldwide.”

To date, Rock the Green has hosted bands, such as Third Eye Blind, The Fray, Ben Folds, Imagine Dragons, Metric, Fitz and the Tantrums, Switchfoot, Morning Parade, Atlas Genius, and more.

Rock the Green will return on September 14, 2013.

About A Greener Festival

A Greener Festival was set up in 2006. Its aims are to encourage and promote sustainability and environmental good practice at music and arts festivals and other events, and to use music to promote environmentally friendly behavioral change in the wider audience at live events. A Greener Festival is a not-for-profit organization and has been instrumental in improving sustainability and environmental good practice at music and arts festivals globally. A recognized leader in the field, it knows that music festivals are the ideal forum for promoting lifestyle change, sustainability and the importance of the role of the arts in the fight against climate change. For more information, visit

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