As we look forward once again to a summer of festivals, and to catching up with great music, great friends and sunshine, ecologists at Bangor University are highlighting one simple thing that festival-goers can do for the environment: use the loo.
Festival-goers may be thinking of ways to be environmentally friendly, through lift-sharing or using public transport, reducing their single-use plastic and taking their camping gear and litter home.
There’s another simple thing that they can do though, that can have huge environmental consequences. People attending ‘greenfield’ festivals are being asked not to pee on the ground, as this can then seep into nearby rivers and streams. And it may not just be pee that’s being released into the environment.
Research by Bangor University, using water samples downstream from the last Glastonbury Festival, found that some illicit drugs reached potentially environmentally damaging levels in the river flowing through the site, most likely due to people peeing in the area.
Use the loo!
No matter how long the queue – use the loo.
Some people at festivals take illegal drugs, like cocaine and ecstasy, and we found that these drugs can reach environmentally damaging levels in the nearby river.
At Bangor University we’re doing more research into how damaging this problem is, and what we can do to remove the drugs from waterways, or stop them from entering them in the first place – such as using specially designed reedbeds and wetlands.
You can do something to help though and that is – don’t pee on the ground at a festival. You may think you’re far away from a river, it’s only one pee, but don’t; just use the loo.
Every pee matters!” added Dr Christian Dunn, who led the research .
Bangor University wants festival-goers to join the campaign and use the loo!
Read more about this research here: