American Idol: A More Sustainable Finale


    This season, American Idol is leading by example. Not only has the show used its popularity to encourage individual action in the fight against climate change, but it has also taken a number of steps to reduce the environmental impact of its own production.

    “Greening from the Inside Out”

    With more than 30 million viewers tuning into the Season 7 finale, it is clear that the most significant impact American Idol can have in the fight against climate change will be in engaging its viewers.  In order to deliver a convincing message to its audience, however, Idol first had to make sure that it had its own house in order by going “green” with its own production.  These are just some of the initiatives undertaken by the American Idol production staff to guarantee that the finale was as energy- and resource-efficient as possible.

    • For the finale, FOX purchased renewable energy from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power — a mix of hydro, wind, and solar power
    • By making arrangements with a number of local recycling vendors before the event, the finale was able to recycle 98% of all waste
    • Solar panels on the red carpet and on a few of the air conditioning units helped limit the power needed from the grid
    • For the show itself, FOX used LED projection screens, a new and more energy-efficient technology 
    • At the show’s request, the caterer for the event relied heavily on local, organic ingredients
    • A large portion of the materials used during the press events before and after the show–including the red carpet itself–came from recycled materials