HebCelt’s Green Message Takes Centre Stage
It was great to see the support for Glastonbury when the festival introduced a ban on single-use plastic this year.
This is something we brought in successfully last year as part of our ever-increasing drive to reduce the festival’s environmental impact. Plastic straws were outlawed at HebCelt five years ago, at the same time we brought in re-usable drinks cups. Caterers use paper cups and 100 per cent biodegradable plates and cutlery, while this year’s tickets are made from recycled plastic.
By the end of the 2018 festival, 2980kg of waste on the site – that’s 80 per cent of all waste generated - was re-cycled or sent to a digester and, therefore, diverted from landfill.
That is a pretty good result and in line with our environmentally-conscious policies which helped HebCelt earn a Highly Commended accolade at A Greener Festival Awards in 2018, the only Scottish festival to earn the award. Our partnership with renewables firm Lewis Wind Power, who are again sponsoring the Islands Stage, further underlines our green credentials.
But, of course, we must do better and each year we aim to improve our actions and spread the word amongst our audience, artists and contractors.
Another initiative will see the festival this year host an information tent manned by Tighean Innse Gall (TIG), the housing and energy agency for the Outer Hebrides. Festival-goers will be able to visit the tent for advice on climate change and what they can do about it. Staff will use a battery pack to power a TV screen and tablets to show short films.
TIG recently acquired a Tesla electric car to help promote their message on a tour of the Outer Hebrides, holding Energy in Transition - Energy Advice surgeries, the largest low carbon roadshow on energy and climate change undertaken in Scotland. We will be able to use the Tesla to shuttle artists from hotels, the airport and ferry terminal to the festival site and therefore cut down on emissions.
This new partnership is a natural fit for us as we step up our efforts to cut waste and put our environmental message centre stage.