Coldplay frontman Chris Martin has said the band will not go on tour, including to support their new album, for environmental reasons. Martin told the BBC that the group is taking time off from the road to figure out how to make touring sustainable. The band’s new record, “Everyday Life,” comes out Friday.
“We’re not touring this album,” Martin told BBC News on Thursday. “We’re taking time over the next year or two to work out how our tour can not only be sustainable [but] how can it be actively beneficial.”
The band will play two gigs in support of the album, in Jordan. These will be streamed for free around the world on YouTube. The concerts will take place at sunrise and sunset in the Arab country this Friday.
Dave Matthews Band, Jack Johnson and Billie Eilish are among the artists who have made efforts to lessen the substantial carbon footprint that touring creates, from using biodiesel fuel in their buses and other vehicles to banning plastic from the venues in which they play. In partnership with the nonprofit environmental organization Reverb, over the past 15 years Matthews and his group — who were named a Goodwill Ambassador by the United Nations for their efforts — have recycled 338,000 gallons of waste, composted 138,000 pounds of food, supported 2,100 family farms and clocked 24,500 volunteer hours.
Matthews spoke with Variety about the band’s “green touring” efforts earlier this year. “When the band started to become successful, I’d leave a concert venue and see the amount of garbage left behind, and I realized that we had to do something or we wouldn’t have a leg to stand on,” he said. “I can’t in good conscience tell anyone the planet is in peril and that they should do something about it — unless I’m doing everything I think is possible. Part of that is trying to change the model of how musicians tour.
Martin said Coldplay will ultimately return to touring – but in a sustainable form.
“The hardest thing is the flying side of things. But, for example, our dream is to have a show with no single-use plastic, to have it largely solar-powered,” he said. The Coldplay star added that, having done huge tours, the band is asking: “How do we turn it around so it’s not so much taking as giving?”