Association of British Orchestras

Green Orchestras

Following the ABO conference in 2009, the ABO worked with Julie's Bicycle, a not-for-profit company helping the music industry cut its greenhouse gas emissions and create a low carbon creative future. In 2010 the ABO and Julie’s Bicycle published the Green Orchestras Guide, a simple guide to sustainable practice, followed by Moving Arts Volume 2: Orchestras, a research project assessing the carbon impacts of orchestras touring the UK and internationally. The research was funded by Arts Council England, the British Council, and Orchestras Live.

In November 2012 the ABO launched a Green Charter, which commits its members to recognise environmental sustainability in their planning, performance and promotion of orchestral music in the UK first and, as a joined community, to use the following four principles of good environmental stewardship:


Understanding the environmental impacts of our work, why it matters and what we can do.


Recognising that we can be more effective if we know the carbon footprint of our activities (buildings, tours, offices, festivals) and using that evidence to benchmark our performance and inspire improvement.


Making the changes in all our activities which will reduce our environmental impacts where ever we can.


Communicating our environmental charter commitments, and our impacts to our staff, governing bodies, funders, sponsors, artists, and audiences.

You can download the charter from the resources box below along with the Green Orchestras Guide, which contains lots of handy tips and approaches to tackle environmental issues in your organisation, and Moving Arts: Orchestras, which assesses the carbon impacts of orchestras touring the UK and internationally.

Related information

View the Green Orchestra charter

View the Green Orchestras guide

Moving Arts: Orchestras

Annual Conference

The next ABO conference will take place in Bristol,
hosted by Bristol Beacon, from 24-26 January 2024.