10
Sep
08

London’s “Green Theatre” Plan

As I read through London’s recently released plan of action for their theaters, I kept asking myself how the climate (and I don’t mean the weather kind) in London — or Europe in general — allows such things to happen. I know that NYC mayor Bloomberg has taken steps to encourage a greener Broadway, but to my knowledge nothing at the level of London mayor Johnson’s report would happen here in the States. At least not this quickly, this comprehensively…I just don’t see it.

In short, I’m amazed with the document they produced, and the related “Green Theatre Calculator 2008” (download your own excel copy here), which is a great tool for theaters everywhere. Thank you London.

I could go on and on about this report, but instead I’ll hit some highlights, and strongly encourage you to download a copy and study it — especially the “practical actions.”

  • 35% of London theater’s carbon emissions come from “front of house” operations, including heating and cooling
  • 9% of the emissions are the result of “stage electricals”
  • The entire London theater industry has a carbon footprint “roughly equivalent” to the energy use of nearly 9,000 homes
  • The report advocates factoring “equipment energy costs” into production budget
  • An appendix to the report lists the top actions that theaters can take, including:
  1. Switch off stage lights when not in use
  2. Reduce energy use in exterior lighting
  3. Implement energy management program
  4. Minimize travel emissions

Again, this post barely scratches the surface of the report. Read it yourself. If we all manage to implement a fraction of its suggestions, and are inspired by one of its case studies, we will push green theater in America nearer to true sustainability.


2 Responses to “London’s “Green Theatre” Plan”


  1. 1 Andrea Baruch
    August 31, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    Just discovered your site – Brava! Will continue to read and pass on ideas to Theatre and Arts folk and communties here locally. I’ve been away from acting for 20 years, but have continued supporting live theatre; now while I’m considering ‘doing it again’, exciting to find your fine work! Have always been passionate about theatre that’says something’… My husband does green design and remodeling.
    Big Thank you.
    Nevada City, CA usa

  2. August 20, 2013 at 9:15 am

    Hello there! I could have sworn I’ve been to this website before but after checking through some of the post I realized it’s new to me.
    Anyhow, I’m definitely glad I found it and I’ll be bookmarking and checking back frequently!


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what’s in a color?

"It should be about different kinds of symbols than the color green—wind farms, solar, renewable-energy laboratories, those things that are symbolic of the new energy economy. People think that we overuse the concept of green, and it could become trite in its expression.”
“This idea about green in a lot of people’s minds still conjures up this notion of a fringe or something that’s out-there. It doesn’t inspire this notion of a new America. It just seems more substantive than a color.” - Colorado governor Bill Ritter, Jr. in The New Yorker
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