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Hot air from green rockers Radiohead

In today’s Sunday Times you can find an interesting article on how Radiohead are significant contributors to greenhouse gases, according to an environmental audit of their recent tour and record production. The past week, Thom Yorke has fronted the Friends of the Earth campaign that seeks to make the government legally responsible for reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 3% a year.

The Sunday Times enlisted the services of the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Management (ECCM) to assess the scale of his band’s pollution. It found that 50,000 trees would need to be planted and maintained for 100 years in order to offset the amount of CO2 produced by Hail to the Thief, the group’s last album and tour. Trees neutralise the effects of emissions by absorbing CO2 and producing oxygen.

Tony Juniper, executive director of Friends of the Earth, defended Yorke and his band. “Everyone in society is contributing to carbon dioxide emissions, and to pick on anyone saying ‘It’s a problem and therefore I must be a total paragon of virtue’ is not a particularly good way of looking at it,” he said.

Bryce Edge, Radiohead’s manager, said he was unsure if the band had taken measures to limit the environmental impact of their tour. “You either do these tours or you don’t,” he said. “I don’t know if the cups or anything are biodegradable, although I’m sure they are.”

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