Hundreds of thousands of people partying at one place for a few days during a festival is bound to have a dramatic effect on the environment. Attending a festival or rave is not only a vacation, but also a chance to escape for many. Though, it seems they forget they still need to clean up after themselves and leave no trace of the party that went on – even while on vacation. After seeing some photos from Glastonbury Festival 2015, I thought it might be important for us to visit this damage and remember that we are responsible for clean up as attendees.
This past weekend 177,000 people donned their “wellies” for the Coachella across the pond. The 45th annual Glastonbury Festival boasted 26 stages and headliners from The Who to Kanye West. The 900 acre festival grounds was home to attendees for over 4 day, and once all they all left, a whole new group of people, who are often under appreciated, entered. The clean up crew gets to witness the aftermath each festival and here is what it looks like:
Photo By Daivd Hedges, SWNS.com
For Glastonbury, a crew of 800 volunteers -that’s right, people who are not getting paid- will pick up after the messy attendees who did little to keep their space clean. It’s estimated that 1,650 tons of waste and over 5,000 abandoned tents will be collected once the clean up is finished. The amount of garbage left looks a bit extreme to me and I think these attendees need to take more responsibility for their waste.
Reading about Glastonbury reminded me of a local California event where attendees also destroyed their venue. San Diego based CRSSD Festival made headlines in April primarily because of the damage attendees caused to the waterfront park. This festival spanned two days and there was over $64,000 worth of damage to the park. To put this in perspective, the event organizers rented the park for only $33,000. It’s a shame that a park that brings so much to an urban community is now at a loss. The deposit from the event covers only $7,000 of the damage, but the event organizers were to be invoiced for the remaining amount.
As I mentioned in my EDC Recap, EDC even became a floor of trash by the end of the 3 nights. While sometimes it is the lack of trash bins that is to blame, there is really no excuse. Each person should be responsible for their waste and if that means they have to take it back in the car to find a bin or hold it in their backpack until later then so be it. Peace, Love, Unity, RESPECT — respect for the venue, respect for clean up crews and respect for the environment.
I hope we all better learn to manage our waste for our future festivals and raves. Feel free to pick up a bottle that isn’t yours, or call out the kid who just threw his trash to the side. Together we can make an impact!