Universal Music Group Expands Partnership With Reverb To Raise The Bar For Environmental Sustainability For Music Events

Universal Music Group (UMG), the world leader in music-based entertainment, today announced an expansion of its partnership with REVERB, a leading environmental non-profit focused on working with musicians, festivals and venues, to increase sustainability and reduce the environmental footprint of the live music industry.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 04: (L-R) Sir Lucian Grainge, Billie Eilish, Lara Seaver Director of Projects at REVERB and Adam Gardner Co-Founder, Co-Director of REVERB speak onstage during Sir Lucian Grainge’s 2023 Artist Showcase, Presented By Merz Aesthestics’ Xperience+ and Coke Studio” at Milk Studios Los Angeles on February 04, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Lester Cohen/Getty Images for Universal Music Group)

Universal Music Group (UMG), the world leader in music-based entertainment, today announced an expansion of its partnership with REVERB, a leading environmental non-profit focused on working with musicians, festivals and venues, to increase sustainability and reduce the environmental footprint of the live music industry.

The partnership was highlighted earlier today at UMG Chairman & CEO Sir Lucian Grainge’s Artist Showcase and will be again featured tomorrow, at UMG’s Annual After Party to coincide with the 65th Annual Grammy Awards.  At the events, a number of emerging technologies have been, and will be, implemented from CO2 removal, renewable energy sources and recycled materials.  In addition, the events’ menus are both 100% meatless and locally sourced.  The events will serve as models for sustainability standards at future UMG events.

Speaking on the initiative, California Governor Gavin Newsom said, “At a time when the world is grappling with the dire consequences of the climate crisis, it’s more important than ever for all of us to step up and take meaningful action to reduce our environmental footprint. That’s why I commend Universal Music Group for their bold efforts to lead by example and show the rest of us how it’s done. This is our collective responsibility, and it’s incumbent that we work together towards building a more sustainable future for generations to come.”

Susan Mazo, UMG’s EVP of Corporate Social Responsibility, Events and Special Projects, said of the initiative, “We’re proud to build on our relationship with REVERB by partnering with them on two of our flagship events this year. With all eyes on the music industry in Los Angeles this week, this collaboration underscores our commitment to produce more eco-friendly events in order to set a new and sustainable standard across the industry. We are proud that these showcase sustainability in action while also supporting many of our other philanthropic partners.”

UMG and REVERB also announced an annual award – The Universal Music Group x REVERB Amplifier Award – to recognize the artist best exemplifying the commitment to, and achievement of, measurable steps to reduce their environmental footprint and support nonprofit causes through direct fan engagement at shows, online and beyond.

Billie Eilish was named as the award’s inaugural recipient.  Selected for her trailblazing advocacy for sustainability and the environmental movement, Eilish utilized her platform to magnify and bring attention to the work of nonprofit organizations around the globe while engaging her fans and the music industry in meaningful climate action.

Eilish was presented the award by UMG Chairman and CEO Sir Lucian Grainge, REVERB Co-Founder Adam Gardner and REVERB Director of Sustainable Touring, Lara Seaver during the UMG artist showcase on Saturday February 4th.

In presenting Eilish with the award, Grainge said, “Billie, it is my honor to present to you the inaugural Universal Music Group x REVERB Amplifier Award. The award recognizes artists’ efforts to promote sustainability.  Your stellar example and active leadership has inspired us to transform our own events as a company.  Everything UMG is doing this weekend has been designed both to reduce our environmental impact and to increase community engagement on the issue.  We are so thrilled you are the first recipient of this award, an award you so well deserve.  Congratulations.”

Eilish said, “I want to thank Lucian, Reverb and Universal Music. I am very impressed and excited about what you are actually doing to make sustainability a priority. It’s really important. We all can do our part.”

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 04: Billie Eilish attends Sir Lucian Grainge’s 2023 Artist Showcase, Presented By Merz Aesthestics’ Xperience+ and Coke Studio” at Milk Studios Los Angeles on February 04, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for Universal Music Group)

Technical support for these events is being provided by Three Squares Inc., a sustainability consultancy with a division that specializes in designing events to meet the strict international standard for event sustainability management, ISO 20121.  In addition to this, event assets will be designed for future reuse, leftover materials will be donated locally in Los Angeles to education organizations, and carbon emissions from the event will be measured and tracked to inform future reductions for UMG events.

The event’s menus are 100% meatless and ingredients were locally sourced in order to reduce carbon emissions.  Additionally, the gifting suite features exclusively climate-friendly and environmentally responsible products from brand partners.  After the event, select items from the gifting suite will be donated to UMG partner organization Covenant House California, a non-profit youth shelter that provides sanctuary and support for youth experiencing homelessness, ages 18-24.

UMG is committed to innovation in action and this year’s events will support a number of emerging technologies to affect real change in the music and events space, including:

  • Climeworks, a pioneer and leader in CO2 removal that uses Direct Air Capture to remove the CO2 directly from the air so that it can be stored safely in the deep underground. With Climeworks, we are committed to removing 100% of the CO2 resulting from the energy required to power the events.
  • Overdrive Energy Solutions, a company that provides smart battery power stations recharged by renewable energy.
  • FLOR carbon neutral green carpet, made from recycled content and manufactured using 100% renewable electricity. Our FLOR green carpet will replace the traditional red carpet.

“It has been a true labor of love to partner with UMG on these two huge events and we couldn’t be more thrilled with what we have planned,” said REVERB Co-Founder, Adam Gardner.  “We’re also excited to recognize Billie’s environmental work.  Having worked closely with Billie on her 2022 World Tour, we know firsthand how dedicated she is to using her music and her platform to create positive change.” 

In addition, UMG will continue to support its long-time health care partner, Mental Health Coalition (MHC).  In 2022, UMG and MHC collaborated to help individuals navigate the very real mental health issues surrounding climate change, eco-anxiety, climate trauma, PTSD and climate justice, amongst others.  This year, the weekend’s events will feature a photo booth and for every photo shared during the weekend, UMG will make a donation to MHC, to further its message and mission to end the stigma surrounding mental health.  MHC resources are accessible here.  To download the MHC Roadmap to Climate Change Mental Health, produced in partnership with UMG, click here

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