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September 3, 2015

Woodstock no more

Think of Woodstock and it conjures up words like ‘’changed Rock and Roll’’ ‘’500,000 people’’, ‘’legendary performances’’ but also ‘’Sanitation issues’’.

The film footage makes you wonder if you would have braved the horrible conditions the audience had to put up with to see Hendrix play at 8:30 am on that last day (ok, of course you would have, what the heck kind of question is that?)


Woodstock 1969. 3 days of Peace & Music… but at what cost?

Sensitivity to sustainability

Silly example, but events have come a long way since then, advancing in technical sophistication and ecological awareness. Audiences now are very sensitive to any efforts an organizer can put towards sustainability. There are a few ways you can reach out and prove to them that it’s something you care about as well.

Event greening

A good reference for sustainability is the new ISO 20121 sustainable events certification. It maps out how to build eco-responsibility into your event, in categories like event organisers, owners and workforce, to event supply chain and more. For example, onsite waste disposal planning: Are there separate bins for recyclables?  Are they easily accessible? Are the food-and-beverage vendors you are contracting going to serve using recyclable materials? Are they local? How will post-event waste disposal be handled? Do your suppliers help you to reduce the number of transport vehicles on the road? These are just a sample of things that can help optimize your event.


Overview of ISO 20121 (PDF document)

Once your sustainability goals are well defined, make them clear to all involved and it will help build their commitment to your event.

Likewise during the event, through signage or announcements, you can encourage audience participation to keep the event footprint as light as possible. Perhaps you can mention your vendors’ positive actions live or on your website in your partners/sponsors section. Performing artists are also typically eco-conscious and might also help in the promotion of sustainability at the event. You can trust that many, if not all event-goers will pick up on your efforts and it can only cast your event and its participants in a more positive light. Some suppliers can even offer a carbon compensation for their own emissions due to their participation in your event.

Earth is not an open bar. Let’s take action now!

At Stageline, we’ve long taken sustainability very seriously. Starting with the conception of the staging equipment, which is up to 75% recyclable. Also, our staging equipment has an extremely long lifecycle (up to 25+ years). Virtually all of our stages, extremely advanced in design, fit on one tractor-trailer (except SAM750 and SAM555/575 with covered wings), which not only reduces our carbon footprint but also reduces the necessity of extra vehicles such as cranes or lifts, further reducing greenhouse emissions. Finally, Stageline mobile stages are manufactured from its LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified facility. Conception of the building considers ecological layout of the site, energy efficiency, water management and conservation.

A lot of care goes into site conservation: There is no grading necessary, no excessive site disturbance by mechanical equipment such as the type needed for ballasting or anchoring and, very importantly, our technicians and other personnel subscribe to our core values concerning the environment and are dedicated to make each event as sustainable as possible.

If you’d like more information on using Stageline expertise in sustainability to create your event, please contact us. We’ll be glad to help.


After the Formula One Grand Prix, Osheaga, Heavy Montreal, Îlesoniq and Color Run Canada, nature reasserts itself in Parc Jean Drapeau.