Music industry vs the environment

As many of you know, I’ve been really interested in looking at how the music industry can be more sustainable.

Back in the early days of the DiS label, we shifted all of our CD releases to recycled gatefold card cases, which was about our only option back then.

Sadly things haven’t changed too much and whilst physical record sales continue to grow and grow, with vinyl (ie polyvinyl chloride or pvc for short) sales soaring, little is changing to lower their impact on the planet.

A month or so ago I begun working as a consultant for a new record club which is using a non-toxic and recycle format of vinyl. What Naked are doing is not perfect but it’s a big step towards something better than 99% of the records currently on the market…

Anyway, been researching this loads partly as I’m interested, a bit for this project, but also as I’m really keen to reboot the DiS label and not sure there’s really the right format to do it in yet (bafflingly a few blockchain companies are purporting to have less footprint than streaming or even social media posts for 4K video and wavs etc)

Be curious if you’ve seen any great green initiatives in music and if you’ve thought differently about your music consumption in light of campaigns like No Music On a Dead Planet (can’t recommend their Sounds Like A Plan podcast enough to get clued up on this stuff)

Here’s a piece the Quietus have done which Naked contributed to that I think some of you might find revealing - the thought of how much vinyl goes into landfill after reading the IPCC reports last week is chilling (not to mention the sorts of countries who are profiting from the crude oil used)

And following an online discussion with Chris Packham and Greenpeace on Friday, here are a few tips for looking after your records

1 Like

Here’s a thread with some data on streaming in case you’re interested - thought maybe best to separate physical and digital discussions

There’s a free online discussion event next week in case it’s of interest

The most sustainable solution is DRM free purchased / downloaded music (rather than streaming the same songs over and over) with electricity provided by nuclear power.

We don’t live in a perfect world though.


Nail on head.

Surely solar or geothermal power is better?

One thing to consider with downloads is that it requires energy to store them.

The big problem is the industry hasn’t done enough research into this to know what’s better to inform consumers

I reckon so, but both are currently incredibly unreliable in terms of mass power production, and there’s still no feasibly affordable/pragmatic way to manufacture them without heavy reliance on fossil fuels. Without being glib, I’ d say that government efforts to generate green energy have been a complete white elephant, given the fossil fuels required to manufacture vs. energy output, lifespan, and scrappage at end of use.

All-round, SMRs are the best solution for the time being I think:

1 Like

Have Coldplay actually pulled off the tour? Big touring acts are a major MAJOR problem and obviously you can’t get people to take a bus as much as you may try but in terms of their direct output did this work?

Radiohead stuck it out for all of one tour on the trains did they not?

Currently coming up with a few ideas for this funding and thought it might be of interest to some of you

Interesting to see that 71% of arts institutions have programmed environmental work, as I’ve not seen many music projects on these themes (although I guess any music about nature or late stage capitalism is sort of about the climate crisis)

1 Like