Glastonbury founder Michael Eavis says best thing for environment would be not to run the festival
Glastonbury Festival's founder Michael Eavis has admitted that the best thing for the environment would be for him not to run the event at all.
Speaking during BBC Two documentary Glastonbury: 50 Years and Counting on Sunday, Eavis, 86, said that despite spending decades encouraging festival goers to consider their environmental impact, he recognised that his own event could add to the impact of climate change.
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However, Glastonbury makes large donations to partner charities Oxfam, Greenpeace and Water Aid, and farmer Eavis said he had to "sup with the devil" to continue to support them.
He said: "The best thing for the environment, obviously, is not to run the festival at all, isn't it?
"To enjoy yourselves at a major event like this which pleases so many people around the world, there has to be some wear and tear with that.
"Trying to make £2million a year in order to keep all the charities going, and we seem to have to sup with the devil a bit."
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He has run Glastonbury Festival from Worthy Farm in Somerset since 1970 and now co-organises it with daughter Emily Eavis, 42, with the pair putting a strong emphasis on environmental education and even making the entire festival plastic free in recent years.
Emily said: "We hope that the greater good outweighs the negative output, which I think it does, I think people come here and they find out new ways of being, of existing, of consuming.
"They discover new politics, they discover new green ideas, it fires people up.
She added: "I hope that's come back, the politics, and I hope people are more aware of the environment they're living in from being here, because it's a great way to demonstrate that you are responsible for the space that you live in, but we've got a long way to go."
Glastonbury regularly features speakers and demonstrations about caring for the environment and combatting climate change, with Sir David Attenborough having taken to the stage in 2019.
The BBC Two documentary, which included many of the festival's previous performers talking about their experiences there, showed The Cure's Robert Smith explaining how it could be a force for good.
He said: "Glastonbury does have a history of being more than just a music festival. You've got vast numbers of young people, if you're not going to engage them and get them to do something..."
Glastonbury Festival 2022 takes place from 22 to 26 June.
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