Logo Acting Responsibly

Stars of Sounds 2016: A Complete Success & Nearly No Mess

Littering and waste are highly critical issues at festivals. A comprehensive waste concept, such as that implemented at the Stars of Sounds event in Murten, Switzerland earlier this summer, really pays off.

Stars of Sounds is an annual music festival, held in early June, and taking place at Murten and Aarberg, two locations in the north-west of Switzerland. With an interesting line-up Murten attracted more than 28,000 visitors alone this year.

The first event was held in 2015 to great acclaim, though organisers of the festival were determined to improve one aspect in particular: waste management.

Stars of Sounds in 2015
Stars of Sounds in 2015

To build on the lessons learned from last year’s festival, organisers teamed up with Schwery Consulting to develop a waste concept that had the potential to share the glory alongside some of the festival’s headline acts!

As a result, initiatives this year included waste stations – offered by Migros’ nachhatige-events.ch – that were specifically designed for cultural and sport events. Characterised by a uniform and clear design, Stars of Sounds’ 30 waste stations facilitated the separation of residual waste, PET, aluminium, and glass during the festival. A 60-second clip was shown between the acts sensitising visitors with the message: “Don’t be messy – recycle!”

In what proved to be another decisive move, the organising committee this year opted to not sell beverages in PET bottles, but instead to supply festival-goers with reusable cups.

The outcome was dramatic: The amount of total waste per person decreased by about 22% in comparison to last year, and the amount of PET and aluminium was reduced by 52% and 59%, respectively! Even more astonishing was the fact that the weather was not so good, a factor which usually increases the amount of waste by up to 50%.

Gerhard Steiner, the person responsible for construction and infrastructure at Stars of Sounds, was overwhelmed by the result. Looking at the two photos he took after the two events, he said: “It is not difficult to figure out which one was taken in which year!”

Stars of Sounds in 2016
Stars of Sounds in 2016