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Sustainable Festivation

Sustainable Festivation

Sustainable Festivation

With your help, Planet Bluegrass festivals continue to be a model of Sustainable Festivation*. Check out the sustainability programs built into the fabric of our festivals and see what new things we are up to in the “News and Updates” section.

*SUSTAINABLE FESTIVATION (n): Sustainable Festivation (n) is the act of creating a conscious, socially responsible community centered around a love of music, unwavering respect for the planet, an appreciation of the human experience, and thoughtful consideration of our intertwined futures.

News & Updates

Sustainable Festival Practices

Sustainable Festivation

Waste Diversion

Our waste diversion rate for 2022 was almost 60% across all of our festivals. That means that of all the waste produced at our festivals, only 40% typically ends up in a landfill. The average recycling rate for Colorado in 2021 was only 16% (Eco-Cycle & CoPrig). We’re ahead of the curve, but we’re not stopping there.

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Plate in river

Reusable Cups & Dishes

Reduce. REUSE. Recycle. Reducing and reusing is a higher priority than recycling. This is why we have been offering collectable REUSABLE long-lasting plastic cups with discounted refills for decades and have been running a reusable dish program at our festival grounds in Lyons, CO since 2016.

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Sustainable Festivation

Emissions & Energy

Since 2007, Planet Bluegrass has committed to voluntarily calculate and offset the Telluride Bluegrass Festival’s carbon footprint (which accounts for over 80% of the total Planetary impact of our 3 major festivals) by investing in carbon offsets. These are meaningful, measurable projects that either pull greenhouse gasses out of the atmosphere or prevent them from ending up there.

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Looking Back


Carbon Accounting - Festival Footprint

PB has partnered with Aclymate, a local Colorado that offers an all-in-one plateform to help small business track emissions and purchase offsets, to develop software to estimate the carbon impact of events. Festivarians were asked to participate in a travel survey and purchase offsets for their travel.

Summer 2022

PB partners with Seas of Trees to Plant 2,000 Trees in Telluride

PB along with the Town of Telluride, San Miguel County and the Telluride Foundation contributed to planed a 2,000 tree demonstration forest that at maturity will remove 48 tons of carbon dioxide each year.

February 2022

PB Awarded Folk Alliance International’s “Clearwater Award”

Folk Alliance International’s “Clearwater Award” is given out annually to a festival that prioritizes environmental stewardship and demonstrates public leadership in sustainable event production.


PB donates leftover food to local food banks in Telluride and Lyons.

We didn’t want to see our leftover catering go to waste, so we searched for a solution. In the first two years, we donated over 3000 pounds of food!


PB introduces reusable plate system to Lyons Festivals

We pledged to reduce our reliance on single-use products. We invested in a program to wash plates made from bamboo, corn starch and sugar cane onsite at the festivals.


PB sources carbon offsets from local Larimer County landfill

We chose to source our carbon offsets from a local Larimer County Landfill, just north of our headquarters in Lyons, Colorado. We purchased 2,496 metric tons of carbon offsets from this project.


PB removes all landfill trash containers from Lyons festivals

We took the next step toward “zero-waste” by encouraging Festivarians to pack out everything that could not be recycled or composted.


PB offers free filtered water

We provided an alternative to bottled water as usual by offering free filtered water at the festival to help encourage our festival community to kick the bottled water habit.


PB neutralizes 100% of emissions created by the Telluride Bluegrass Festival

We began neutralizing 100% of emissions caused by festival travel, electricity, diesel and gas by investing in innovative carbon reduction projects.


PB introduces world’s first compostable water bottle

BIOTA was the World’s first bottled spring water/beverage packaged in a Planet Friendly™ commercially compostable plastic bottle. Our bottle was manufactured from a 100% renewable resource, corn, instead of oil.


PB begins offsetting emissions by purchasing carbon offsets

We made the commitment to offset our footprint and invested in carbon offsets and renewable energy credits (REC’s) to mitigate the carbon dioxide (CO2) created by our electricity, diesel and gas consumption.


PB introduces composting to Telluride Bluegrass Festival

We worked with a local composter whose farm was located only 16 miles from the festival site. That led us to research compostable materials such as corn resin cups, plates and utensils that would turn back into food in the soil.