Estonian festival I Land Sound wins coveted environmental awareness award

I Land Sound 2019.
I Land Sound 2019. Source: Angelica Õunapuu

Estonia's I Land Sound has become the first live music festival in the Baltics to win a prestigious International A Greener Future (AGF) certification. The festival, which takes place on Saaremaa's Illiku peninsula, was certified by AGF as a 'Greener Festival 2023- Highly Commended.'

According to I Land Sound's head of sustainability Kadi Aguraijuja, the award comes as a result of years of hard work and careful consideration of all the environmental aspects involved in organizing the festival.

"Getting the AGF certificate confirms that we are on the right track and gives us great motivation to continue developing our environmental project. In February 2024, we will go to London, to the annual international conference to receive the award, where the best festivals in each sector will be announced, and where we will also have the chance to earn further recognition. So, there may be more good news to come from us in the new year," said Aguraijuja.

Paap Uspenski, I Land Sound's chief organizer, said winning the award was akin to a restaurant being given a Michelin Star. He believes the win means even more, when considering how the world's bigger and more progressive festivals are continuing to raise the level of competition for the coveted AGF Awards.

"A festival in a small settlement in Saaremaa can now be compared in terms of organizational detail, with such well-known events as Roskilde (Denmark), DGTL (Netherlands), Øya (Norway), Wonderfruit (Thailand), Glastonbury (U.K.) or Boom (Portugal)," he said.

I Land Sound is an experience festival, which was first held in 2017. As an environmentally aware festival, it has taken significant steps to reduce waste, emissions and energy consumption, as well as to raise environmental awareness among those who attend.

Claire O'Neill, CEO of A Greener Future, said that the initiative and innovation shown by I Land Sound's organizers and team make the festival really stand out. "They care deeply about the environment and the local community and so deserve to be recognized for all their positive efforts. I Land Sound is a truly unique and inspiring experience," O'Neill said.

According to AGF, the Highly Commended award signifies a well-managed environmentally aware festival, which has taken significant steps to reduce waste, reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and to engage with the audience.

In order to for the AGF to complete an evaluation, an independent assessor has to remain on site for the duration of a festival. The evaluation process determines whether the festival qualifies for one of the following levels of certification: outstanding, highly commended, commended or improvers.

When it comes to environmental impact, I Land Sound achieved the highest possible score in five of the eleven categories.


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