Ed Driscoll

Green Age Wasteland

Like America’s Investor’s Business Daily, England’s Daily Mail is equally none-too-thrilled about Live Earth:

A Daily Mail investigation has revealed that far from saving the planet, the extravaganza will generate a huge fuel bill, acres of garbage, thousands of tonnes of carbon emissions, and a mileage total equal to the movement of an army.

The most conservative assessment of the flights being taken by its superstars is that they are flying an extraordinary 222,623.63 miles between them to get to the various concerts – nearly nine times the circumference of the world. The true environmental cost, as they transport their technicians, dancers and support staff, is likely to be far higher.

The total carbon footprint of the event, taking into account the artists’ and spectators’ travel to the concert, and the energy consumption on the day, is likely to be at least 31,500 tonnes of carbon emissions, according to John Buckley of Carbonfootprint.com, who specialises in such calculations.

Throw in the television audience and it comes to a staggering 74,500 tonnes. In comparison, the average Briton produces ten tonnes in a year.

The concert will also generate some 1,025 tonnes of waste at the concert stadiums – much of which will go directly into landfill sites.

Moreover, the pop stars headlining the concerts are the absolute antithesis of the message they promote – with Madonna leading the pack of the worst individual rock star polluters in the world.

“Live Earth is encouraging ‘citizens of the world’ to take small steps: share a car, plant a shrub, turn off a light or hang out washing rather than use a dryer.”

But feel free to light up the football stadium, plug-in 500,000 watts of amplification, and buy boxcars full of CDs and acres worth of playbills.

Related thoughts at Pajamas HQ.