Trip hop masters Massive Attack are on a mission to truly reduce carbon emissions, proposing an “urgent and significant reassembly” of the music industry so as to combat climate change.
The band have partnered with the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change, outlining several areas in which the music industry could and should reduce its carbon footprint as a whole.
Together with Tyndall, the band suggests other acts immediately eliminate private jet use; make a switch to electric transportation of music gear for concerts, and, by 2025, phase out the use of diesel generators at outdoor festivals.
While tackling their own emissions, the band suggests venues should switch to “energy tariffs that directly support renewable energy projects” in order to “support the overall de-carbonisation of the electricity grid.”
Insisting the devil is in the details, Massive’s Robert ‘3D’ del Naja says, “Super low carbon needs to be baked into every decision including routing, venues, transport modes, set, audio and visual design, staffing and promotion”.
To meet the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement, the live music sector needs to aim for zero emissions from buildings and surface travel by 2035, and to limit aviation emissions at 80 percent of 2019 levels.
It all looks like a huge to-do list, but all is laid out clearly in the document Super-Low Carbon Live Music: A Roadmap for the UK Live Music Sector to Play Its Part in Tackling the Climate Crisis.
In response to the report, Massive Attack have already executed six emissions-reduction modules in the planning of their 2022 tour. They are also working with green-industrialist firm Ecotricity to train event staff in the generation and sustainable running of live music operations.
Already the band have paid to have trees planted en masse, prohibited the use of single-use plastics on the road, have performed at Extinction Rebellion events, and travelled by train (as opposed to plane) wherever possible.
As if all that wasn’t enough, they’re even encouraging venues to stock and prepare vegan food options, away from the usual Dagwood Dogs and sloppy hamburger fare.
Said del Naja, “What matters now is implementation. The major promotors simply must do more; it can’t be left to artists to continually make these public appeals.”
If it weren’t for he and his band making these radical changes, del Naja says Massive Attack would have stopped touring altogether.