Isle of Wight festival turf to be used as biomass

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Solo Agency has struck a deal with an Isle of Wight biogas firm to generate more than 950,000 kWh of electricity using turf from the Isle of Wight Festival site. This is almost twice the amount of energy harnessed during the festival.
The Newport-based, Black Dog Biogas plant, supplies power to the Vestas Offshore Wind Blades facility, further contributing to the sustainability outcomes of the project.
Solo Agency is owned by Isle of Wight Festival organisers John and Caroline Giddings, and it has turned over the land it holds for festival camping to biofuel production – with grass harvesting being conducted either side of the June event.
The land was previously managed solely for use by the festival, so the new arrangement brings the land into productive use year-round.
Caroline Giddings said: “We want the Isle of Wight Festival to be the most sustainable festival in the UK. Year-on-year we have done more to ensure that our event is as sustainable as possible, from small scale changes, such as the type of cups and cutlery we use, to systemic shifts such as the push to get the main stage area on the electricity grid. This latest initiative builds on that decade of work to keep us at the forefront of environmental activity in the industry.”
John Giddings added: “I'm really pleased that we're able to give our land a new lease of life, helping to generate renewable energy and making sure the fields are used productively year-round.
“On top of delivering one of the UK’s best music festivals on the island, we have also sought to play a positive role in the local community and we’re proud that we will be doing our bit in the push for a more sustainable future for the island.”
The Isle of Wight Festival said it is committed to continuous improvement in sustainability and is currently working with the Isle of Wight Council on a scoping exercise around the potentially game-changing move of installing a new electricity sub-station near the site. This would enable the most energy intensive areas of the festival to be powered from the grid rather than generators, leading to a significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

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