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First Major Music Venue to Offset Full Season's Carbon Emissions

UC Berkeley's Greek Theatre has pledged to make its entire 2006 concert season climate-neutral, marking the first time a major music venue has made a season-long commitment to minimize its footprint on the planet.

Concertgoers will have more than great music to celebrate this summer at the legendary Greek Theatre at UC-Berkeley thanks to an unprecedented environmental partnership between Clif Bar & Co. and Another Planet Entertainment.

The new collaboration will make the entire 2006 Greek Theatre concert season climate-neutral, which will offset its impact on global warming and mark the first time a major music venue has made a season-long commitment to minimize its footprint on the planet. In addition to battling global warming through carbon offsets, eco-efforts at the Greek Theatre sponsored by Clif Bar will include a new organic food cafe, recycling stations, the use of recycled paper for all printed materials and a means for Greek-goers to offset their impact on global warming.

Even musicians will get into the act at the outdoor amphitheatre built into the Berkeley Hills 103 years ago. Clif Bar will make it possible for this summer's Theatre lineup -- including INXS, Radiohead, Mark Knopfler and Emmylou Harris, Widespread Panic, The Berkeley Jazz Festival, The Flaming Lips, Ween, Death Cab For Cutie, Bloc Party, Ben Harper and Damian "Jr. Gong" Marley -- to use biodegradable forks, knives, spoons, cups and plates for their backstage meals and snacks.

"Our passions at Clif Bar extend beyond outdoor sports," said Grady O'Shaughnessy, marketing manager at Clif Bar, a leading maker of all-natural and organic energy foods and drinks. “We have a lot of musicians in the company. In fact, our founder, Gary, plays a jazz trumpet that he’s kept alongside his bike for many years. To partner with a great outdoor venue like the Greek is a natural extension of our commitment to preserving the places we play.”

In partnership with NativeEnergy, Clif Bar is purchasing enough renewable energy credits or “green tags” to help build new wind turbines that will offset all of the carbon dioxide (CO2) produced during the 2006 Greek Theatre concert season, which runs June through October. The carbon emissions associated with the 8,500-seat Greek Theatre result from all of the electricity used to power and light the venue.

Clif Bar’s purchase of renewable wind energy credits is equivalent to offsetting 88 tons of CO2 emissions, or the amount of carbon dioxide created by 176,000 miles of car travel. Electricity produced from clean, renewable wind energy displaces energy that otherwise would have to come from burning fossil fuels such as oil or coal, which create CO2, the leading cause of global warming.

“We’re excited about joining with Clif Bar to spread environmental messages to a diverse audience, in a fun and approachable setting,” said Gregg Perloff, C.E.O of Another Planet Entertainment. “The music industry can be a very positive force for the planet.”

In addition to offsetting CO2 emissions, Clif Bar will take the following steps to reduce the environmental impact of the concerts slated this season. For the first time, the venue will feature:
  • Recycled paper and soy based ink for all printed materials
  • Recycled toilet paper and paper towels throughout the venue
  • Biodegradable wine cups and food utensils for concertgoers (biodegradable beer cups will be added later in the season)
  • Biodegradable plates, cups and utensils for artists’ meals
  • Recycling stations and eco-facts throughout the venue
  • An Organic Café with organic food choices
  • Cool Tags for sale at a Clif Bar booth inside the venue. Through a Clif Bar partnership with NativeEnergy, concertgoer’s can purchase Cool Tags to offset with wind energy the amount of CO2 they generate driving to and from the event. For each $2 Cool Tag, an attendee can offset approximately 300 miles of car travel.
The Clif Bar/Another Planet partnership heads a rising tide of environmental activism across the rock music industry, in particular. Performers like Dave Matthews, Neil Young, Bonnie Raitt and Jack Johnson have toured with biodiesel vehicles. Indie rock favorites Guster recently concluded a climate-neutral tour that includes an eco-village and buses that run on biodiesel. Major music festivals such as Bonnaroo have employed “Green Teams” to reduce litter and increase recycling. This year’s Green Apple Music Festival encouraged fans to ride bikes and featured Earth-friendly exhibits.

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