First Light Festival is inspired by Lowestoft’s natural environment – the beach, sun, sea, sky and stars. Our aim is to be the most ‘net-positive’ gathering we can be, by ensuring we work to high environmental standards through our programming and production practices. We will continue to work both independently and jointly with stakeholders, audiences and service providers to do our bit towards a more carbon neutral world.

Taking learnings and ideas from the recent 2022 Festival, we are currently reviewing our policies and will amend this page with updates by the end of summer 2022.

Our Main Environmental Impacts

We’ve identified 4 main ways that First Light Festival impacts out environment:

– Energy use and carbon emissions
– Catering
– Staff, contractor, artist and audience travel: fuel use and carbon emissions.
– Waste and litter

Our intentions over the next 5 years to minimise these impacts include:

– To comply with the requirements of environmental legislation and approved codes of practice
– To assess the environmental impact of current and likely future operations
– To continuously seek to improve environmental performance
– To reduce impacts from pollution, emissions and waste
– To ‘green’ our programming, production and procurement
– To encourage more sustainable forms of transport
– To sustainably manage the use of all resources, energy, water and procurement
– To aim to reduce energy use and related emissions.
– To raise awareness and encourage participation in environmental matters
– To expect similar environmental standards from all suppliers and contractors
– To assist performers and festival-goers to participate in the festivals in an environmentally-sensitive way
– To monitor key items (waste/ power use/car parking) and review our environmental performance annually
– Nominated green champion responsible for keeping up to date with latest practice and communicating these to wider team to support them with making environmentally sustainable decisions.
– The board of Directors will endorse this policy to demonstrate the festival’s commitment.

Alongside these wider aims, we’ll target 5 main strands of our work with dedicated action plans. These identified strands are Programming, Transport, Production, Communications, Traders and Resources.


– Greening the festival by programming artists that support our environmental values
– Create Planet Positive zone – in partnership with the University of Essex, with the aim of educating people about the best way to reduce their own carbon footprint as well as helping us to reduce our own.
– Reuse installations and décor commissioned for the festival.


– According to the Suffolk Climate Emergency Plan, in 2018 transport accounted for over 35% of Suffolk’s Co2 emissions, therefore we are strongly encouraging people to walk or cycle to the festival or use public transport, thereby reducing carbon emissions to get to the Festival.
– We will promote walking routes to the Festival site for around Lowestoft including the train and bus stations.
– We will work with Greater Anglia to ensure there are no rail replacement services over the Festival weekend to maximise uptake.
– Will offer discounted camping for people not travelling by car.
– We will set up a temporary bike park on the festival site.
– Limited the number of artists travelling internationally.


– Ask suppliers for the most efficient and lowest carbon equipment
– Set targets for reduction of unrecyclable/non-compostable productions.
– We will ask for copies of environmental policies as part of our procurement process. If they don’t have an environmental policy yet, we will request a simple description of what actions they’ve taken to become more sustainable, and point them towards policy guidance.

– Will make use of public toilets around the site.
– Use a reputable supplier of temporary toilets and ensure chemicals are disposed of correctly.

– Located to minimise disruption to environment.
– Campers briefed on arrival re protocols around waste, toilets and not using non-ecological washing products on the beach.
– No fires, bbq’s, lanterns etc.
– Campers encouraged to “Leave no Trace” which encouraged campers to leave the site how they found it, responsibly disposing of any waste and emphasizing to take their tent home.

– Noise restrictions agreed with Environmental Health, with monitoring in place throughout.



– Communicate environmental policies and practices with audiences via website, social media and press to include them in process.
– Ensure artists and staff are aware of policies and procedures.
– Maximise use of website and social media as primary source of information for audience to minimise print.
– All print made using sustainable materials and methods.
– Design and signage to be reusable where possible.


– Only use traders from within at 60mile radius of Lowestoft. We will write into trader contracts that reusable, compostable and recyclable consumables are used wherever possible.
– Use traders that have an environmental sustainability policy
– Engage traders offering local, organic produce.
– Encourage traders to invest in low energy equipment
– Reduce the number of meat specific options available, and encourage traders to offer a vegetarian and vegan option
– Crew and artist catering will be vegetarian and produced/ cooked locally using seasonal local produce.


– Messaging in run up to festival and around the site to encourage audience members to leave no trace by taking all items home with them and disposing of rubbish in the bins provided.
– Work with East Suffolk Norse to provide additional waste, recycling and glass bins plus extra collections throughout the festival period and ensure that compostable products are disposed of correctly therefore reducing waste to landfill.
– No single use plastics sold on site.
– Reusable cup policy at the bar.
– co-ordinate mass litter picks

– Engage power supplier using modern and efficient generators
– Use low or zero carbon energy sources including alternative power sources – e.g. solar powered/ bike powered, where possible.
– Use LED and energy efficient lighting systems.

– No bottled water will be sold or provided on site, except in case of emergency.
– We will work with East Suffolk Norse to install additional free water refill points for public use. These will be in line with water regs.
– Grey water from traders collected at nominated points and disposed of appropriately.