Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Edge defends environmental despoilation of U2 tour... sort of

Last week, we had the unedifying spectacle of U2 trying to explain why their hypocritical tax position wasn't hypocritical - it seemed to boil down to "you wouldn't understand".

This week, The Edge is trying to tell us why hauling a massive stage around the planet, and dragging trucks up and down narrow lanes, isn't actually bad for the planet:

"I think anybody that's touring is going to have a carbon footprint."

Well, yes. Anyone who does anything is going to have a carbon footprint, The Edge.

The problem is that yours is totally out of proportion.
"I think it's probably unfair to single out rock 'n' roll."

Given that - in case you've forgotten - your boss is always banging on about fighting injustice, it's probably very, very fair indeed to single out your band and compare what you do with what you preach. And nobody is singling out rock and roll, you twit. You're not being asked to account for formula one's footprint because you're not racing motor cars.

And, lest we forget: your environmental impact is enormous, and doesn't need to be because you don't need to have a bloody massive claw-thing, do you?
"There's many other things that are in the same category but as it happens we have a programme to offset whatever carbon footprint we have."

The rich man's response - I'll shit in your kitchen and then pay for you to buy some paper towels to clean it up - isn't really cutting it, Mr Edge. There's such a thing as setting an example and not doing the damage in the first place. And offsetting doesn't work all that well; nor does planting trees really help overmuch.

And it's not just carbon - you're generating other waste at the same time. And then there's the massive lorries chuntering through those small Irish roads. Do you have an answer for that, The Edge?
"I think that's probably about as realistic as you can be right now," The Edge told BBC 6 Music.

"We'd love to have some alternative to big trucks bringing the stuff around but there just isn't one."

Playing somewhere where the delivery of the staging doesn't create so much disruption? Concentrating on building a show which requires a lot less staging to be brought in? Spending a bit more money on doing it in a more sympathetic way? Putting some thought into the way your tour works, rather than just sticking out a basic "ooh, what can you do, though" response when someone points out how mucky you are? Just a few ideas, The Edge.


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