(AFP) – There is still a long way to go but environmental concerns are raising the volume in current music, from awareness messages from stars like Billie Eilish to small gestures like avoiding the superfluous sticker on a vinyl sleeve.
Today, collectives concerned by ecological issues, from local to international, are multiplying in the industry. “While 09 years ago, it was: + It’s okay, we don’t manufacture aircraft carriers! +”, Recalls Clémence Meunier, from the French branch of Music Declares Emergency (MDE), speaking at the forum on ecological transition of the Parisian festival MaMA (for Marché des musiques nouvelles).
MDE , party of England in 2019, is a movement of artists, professionals and music structures mobilized to declare a state of emergency at the climate level and ecological. MDE quickly gained media attention with famous signatories such as Billie Eilish or Massive Attack. We currently see on the site the bassist of The Strokes or Brian Eno sporting a t-shirt with the logo “No music on a dead planet”.
The idea is “to use the voice of artists, who perhaps reach the public more easily than a report from the experts of the IPCC (UN group of climate experts), our public is everywhere, rare are the people who do not listen to music “, as summarized in MaMA Clémence Meunier.
Organizations like MDE, as this journalist says, attach themselves to” raise awareness among the public and professionals “on points such as” mobility “.
– Question of transport –
Because “transport is the primary source of greenhouse gas emissions in live entertainment”, as pointed out at MaMA Solweig Barbier, co-founder of the Arviva association (Living Arts, Sustainable Arts), born in 2020.
On the side pros, it’s like she emphasizes it to “rationalize to avoid touring China and the USA in a hurry”. The group Coldplay had recently promised to ensure its air travel. And for the public, we have to find alternatives to individual vehicles.
Solweig Barbier illustrates this last point and a possible solution with his other hat of general secretary of the Grange au Lac , performance hall in Evian-Les-Bains, built on a rock face. “No one is going to come by bike (smile), so we have to encourage people to take a shuttle where a pre-show will be presented to them.”
She also insists on forms to put in the messages to pass. “I am based in Evian-Les-Bains, a city where we sell water in plastic bottles, so rather than saying + We must stop plastic water bottles +, we say + In a bottle (reusable) , the water is cooler + “.
– Question of scale –
These different groups, as Ms. Meunier explains, must pool “resources and knowledge”. Ms. Barbier agrees: “We (the pros of the sector) shoot in the same places, so we have to find (and list) hotels that do not use too much laundry (therefore use less water, detergents … ), do not turn on the light unnecessarily, limit the use of plastic, etc. “.
Present at the round table, Lucie Bouchet-Dahan, project manager in the cultural marketing and sustainable development applied to the sector, also dissects what each can do at his level: the artist “Emily Loizeau, for her vinyls, has avoided the sticker (sticker) which is useless, it is a good example “.
These experts present at MaMA are lucid about the challenges to be met. “When, without giving a name, we arrive at 30. 00 0 people per evening in a festival, the question arises of the scale and the origin of the public, it is still a little taboo “, says Ms. Bouchet-Dahan.
They are not fooled either by the declarations of intention of certain actors in the sector to give themselves a clear conscience. Too often still, “when we ask the question + Who wants change? + Everyone says + Yes +. When we say + Who wants to change? + There is no one left”, concludes Solweig Barbier.