Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 27 November 2014

Have U2 created a monster with massive carbon footprint of 360 tour?

Bono and the Edge, during the first night of  their 360 degree tour in Barcelona
Bono and the Edge, during the first night of their 360 degree tour in Barcelona
U2 open their world tour in Barcelona
Bono of U2 performs onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain.
Adam Clayton, Bono, The Edge and Larry Mullen of U2 perform onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain.
The Edge of U2 performs onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain.
Steve and Marla Lawrenz at a U2 concert in Hawaii, 2006
Fans go mad as U2 perform onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain.
L-R The Edge, Larry Mullen, Bono and Adam Clayton of U2 perform onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain.
Bono of U2 performs onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain
Bono of U2 onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou
Bono of U2 performs onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain.
Fans go mad as U2 perform onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain
Fans go mad as U2 perform onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain
Bono of U2 performs onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain.
Adam Clayton of U2 performs onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain.
Fans of U2 prepare for the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain.
Larry Mullen of U2 performs onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain
Larry Mullen of U2 performs onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain
Adam Clayton, Bono, The Edge and Larry Mullen of U2 perform onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain.
Adam Clayton, Bono, The Edge and Larry Mullen of U2 perform onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain
Fans of U2 watch them perform onstage on the first night of their 360 tour held at Camp Nou on June 30, 2009 in Ba2rcelona, Spain
Claw -- the circular stage in Camp Nou, Barcelona
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
U2 frontman Bono
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
Even though Bono had not heard of Spotify U2's latest album, No Line on the Horizon, made its debut on the new music service
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
Bono and U2 perform at the Brit Awards 2009 at Earls Court exhibition centre in London, England, Wednesday, Feb. 18, 2009. (AP Photo/MJ Kim)
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
Bono, left, and Adam Clayton from Irish band U2 perform at the Brit Awards 2009 at Earls Court exhibition centre in London, England, Wednesday, Feb. 18, 2009. (AP Photo/MJ Kim)
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
U2 drummer Larry Mullen
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
From left, The Edge, BB King and Bono are seen on stage at "The Blues & Jazz" Gala Concert at the Kodak Theatre on Sunday Oct. 26, 2008 in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark Mainz)
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour
The Nou Camp, in Barcelona, gets the U2 treatment in preparation for the launch of the band's 360 world tour

U2 and Bono’s long-held commitment to “save the planet” has come into question after it emerged they have a carbon footprint big enough to fly the band to Mars and back.







The Irish rockers campaign to fight poverty and AIDS in Africa and Bono called on the world’s population to take better care of the earth.

Speaking in Tokyo last year he said: “My prayer is that we become better in looking after our planet.”

However, according to an environmentalists’ website, the band’s 100-date 18-month world tour will see the multi-millionaires clock up an incredible 70,000 air miles in their fuel-guzzling private jet.

The £90m U2360 tour also features three 390-tonne stages criss-crossing the globe, along with 200 crew and backstage staff.

The opening night in Barcelona’s Nou Camp last week featured the space station-style stage and satellite link-up with the International Space Station.

Perhaps appropriately, the tour’s carbon footprint can also be measured in space terms, with their colossal emissions of up to 65,000 tonnes of CO2 enough to fly Bono, the Edge, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen Jr from earth to the planet Mars — and back.

>>Been to see U2 in concert? Click here and send us your pics

The figure was calculated by experts from carbonfootprint.com, a company which specialises in assessing environmental damage.



U2’s CO2 emissions are the equivalent of the waste created by 6,500 average British or Irish people in an entire year, or equal to leaving a standard 100 watt lightbulb on for 159,000 years.

The band’s vast emissions are dozens of times bigger than Madonna’s carbon footprint on her 2006 world tour, despite her extravagant demands and 250 staff. She produced 1,635 tonnes in air transport.

U2’s PR agency RMP did not return a request asking if the band were buying carbon offsets to contribute towards the damage of their enormous emissions.

Carbonfootprint.com’s environment consultant Helen Roberts said: “The carbon footprint generated by U2’s 44 concerts this year is equal to carbon created by the four band members travelling the 34.125 million miles from Earth to Mars in a passenger plane.

“You also have to add the carbon emissions from the same number of concerts again next year.

“Just looking at the 44 concerts this year, the band will create enough carbon to fly all 90,000 people attending one of their Wembley concerts to Dublin. To offset this year’s carbon emissions, U2 would need to plant 20,118 trees.”

Pollution experts said U2’s 44 concerts in Europe and North America this year will produce 20,117.50 tonnes of CO2 emissions, unless the band unexpectedly decide to ship to equipment to the US, in which case the footprint would be 5091.41 tonnes.

Bono and his bandmates will generate 64.42 tonnes of CO2 by flying 22,037 miles to this year’s gigs in their private jet, currently stationed at Nice airport, near their Cote d’Azur holiday villas in the south of France.

Most of the carbon footprint comes from transporting the three 390-tonne stages, using 3,286.60 tonnes of CO2, with another 916.07 tonnes for extra equipment. Next year they are expected to play 20 concerts in North America in June and July and 20 dates in Europe in August and September.

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