Greenpeace’s Glastonbury Immersive Arctic Experience

2013 Glastonbury worthy causes partner Greenpeace turned its festival field into an Arctic landscape as it used its festival alliance to promote its current global campaign to save the Arctic.


The charity has partnered with the iconic Worthy Farm music extravaganza since the 1990s and at Glastonbury 2013 Greenpeace invited music lovers to step through a snowy arch into the NGO’s own frozen north Arctic landscape for an experiential campaign to Save The Arctic.


This initiative was spearheaded by its centrepiece ‘Explorers Camp’, complete with an ‘Arctic Dome’ offering visitors an amazing immersive experience, an Arctic-themed sustainable skate ramp, an oil rig to explore the darker side of Arctic exploitation, an Arctic farmers’ market (designed to ape a Svalbard village), sustainable cafe and hot springs and showers.


The experience saw Greenpeace work with a set of genuine Arctic explorers who shared their experiences and their concerns about the future of our amazing world with festival goers, plus saw Arctic face-painting and dressing up strands, as well as special Arctic-inspired performance art every day and night.


The NGO has taken its Arctic activation to other festivals in the past – including Latitude, WOMAD and Wilderness – as its seeks to educate and inform festival goers and collect the support from those who want to help it’s work to the Arctic environment.


The objective is to build a movement of millions of people to stand together in face of climate change and stop the destruction of one of the last untouched places on earth.


The starting point is that ‘no country or company owns the Arctic’ and the aim is to keep the landscape that way by creating a global sanctuary.


The camp and the dome aim to educate visitors on the facts about the Arctic, its role in keeping the planet cool and shaping our weather patterns and to shine a light on its dwindling health as in the last 30 years nearly three-quarters of the ice cap floating at the top of the world has been lost due to climate change.


The wider campaign – which aims to ‘draw a line in the ice and telling oil companies that the Arctic is a risk too far – is built around an initiative-specific website at www.savethearctic.org.


Activation includes petitions and videos, lobby and action and a current focus is shining a light on the potential damage caused by big oil companies (like Shell, which recently signed a deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Gazprom) moving in to the region to drill for the very oil that is causing the melting destruction of the Arctic in the first place.





Glastonbury Festival aims to retain its ethos as a positive force for change both locally and internationally and ever since the early nineties Greenpeace has been one of the lead charities invited by the Glastonbury to operate at the festival where it has its very  own field on which it promotes itself and its international campaigns.


The other organisations currently partnering with Glastonbury under the same ‘Worthy Causes’ category include Oxfam and WaterAid.


Glastonbury does have a few long standing partnerships – such as those with media sponsors The Guardian and the BBC, as well as with telecoms brand EE (formerly Orange) – and has sold beer pouring rights at the site, but on the whole it plays down its sponsorship rights and keeps corporate presence fairly low key ensuring it largely avoids the over-branding of so many other contemporary festivals.




Save The Arctic Campaign Website



Glastonbury Greenpeace Field Website



Greenpeace Website



Greenpeace Save The Arctic YouTube





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