Won’t Louie Vega and Derrick Carter think of the polar bears? Report into DJ carbon emissions released to accusations of hysteria

I never thought it would fall down to me, of all people, to defend the so-called superstar DJs in dance music. Yet I strangely feel the need to, given how the dance music press has decided to turn against the very people they normally venerate.

Clean Scene have released a report which says they’re doing a lot of damage to our environment. They’ve basically turned into Rodney Trotter in an Only Fools and Horses episode – it later transpires his sudden interest in the environment is because “I haven’t had a bit in months”.

Whilst no one is accusing the Berlin based outfit of that, this report has been accepted by the dance music press without question. There’s no questions being asked about the methodology of the report, which even the authors accept is flawed. All those DJs were not on private jets, even with the money some of them are raking in.

And in a blatantly stage managed piece of theatre, they’ve also compiled a list of the most carbon guzzling DJs out there – available here, if you’re curious. Note that no right of reply was offered to the DJs being accused of killing polar bears for profit with their emissions – not by Clean Scene, not by the journalists who are meant to do this as part of their jobs.

The report has all kinds of damning figures, on the surface anyway. 51,000 flights by 1000 DJs in 2019. The equipment of 20,000 households emissions of CO2. The equivalent of powering 8000 festivals for three whole days.

in 2019, emitting an equivalent amount of CO2 as a year of electricity for 20,000 households, powering 8,000 festivals for three days, or pressing 25 million records. Deeply apocalyptic language, and also for the most part utterly useless.

It’s a crying shame because Clean Scene actually has some good ideas in the report for the future. For example, promoters and such dropping ridiculous exclusivity clauses is a good idea for numerous reasons in addition to stopping icebergs from melting.

And things like supporting your local scene and setting tours up to require the minimum number of flights required all make sense. No one ever says they enjoy going through airport security, do they?

I just happen to think it says a lot about the state of dance music when this hysterical, vainglorious type of report is needed to even get these things talked about – and even then, you can’t be assured the clickbait obsessed press will actually take notice.