Brussels, 3rd November 2022,

Ahead of this year’s UN Climate Change Conference (COP27) in Egypt, IMPALA is launching a #WeMeasureTogether campaign focussing on take-up of its carbon calculator. Underlining the power of culture as a catalyst to boost collective action, IMPALA is also sending a message to the EU and national governments to commit to support sector initiatives that facilitate transition.

IMPALA released the first bespoke carbon calculator for labels in cooperation with Julie’s Bicycle earlier this year, with almost 70 IMPALA members across 16 countries in Europe already measuring their impact. The aim of the calculator is to help members measure and reduce their footprint in a standardised manner, while also acknowledging the work done “Beyond Carbon”.

The calculator is free for all IMPALA members and was funded by a group of core contributors (in alphabetical order): !K7 Music Group, Altafonte, Anjunabeats, Because Music, Beggars Group, Cherry Red Records, City Slang, Domino Recording Company, Edel, Encoding Management Service – EMS, Epitaph Records, Everlasting Records, FONO, FUGA, HAIL, Hot Action Records, Irascible Music, Las Vegas Records, Lusitanian Music Publishing, Mouthwatering Records, N.E.W.S. Records, Ninja Tune, Partisan Records, [PIAS], Playground Music Scandinavia, PMI, Roton Music, Secretly Group, TAMBOURHINOCEROS, Two Gentlemen, Warp Records, Zebralution. 

More information about the carbon calculator (how to get started, user guidance) can be found here. 

To help with the process of rolling out the tool across Europe, IMPALA recently launched a project co-funded by the EU, called IMPACTS. The aim is to build new climate literacy capacity for independent music companies in Europe. Find out more about the IMPACTS project on the dedicated page here. 

IMPALA is now calling on all interested members to join the #WeMeasureTogether campaign and use the calculator to produce carbon reports. This will allow IMPALA to create an overview of the sector and develop a carbon baseline. From this understanding it will be possible to develop more targeted pathways for action that will benefit the whole independent music sector. IMPALA members can join the campaign by publishing the visual below and their carbon report, with the #WeMeasureTogether hashtag.

IMPALA will organise another peer-to-peer session ahead of the end-year to encourage knowledge exchange among its membership. All companies interested in participating can reach out to krogozar@impalamusic.org.
Examples of IMPALA members leading the way and other best practices can be found here.

As part of its climate charter and responsibility in line with the relevant climate science, IMPALA is revising its sector sustainability targets. You can find the updated commitment here. We have also updated our policy on offsetting as set out in guidance for members here.

IMPALA also calls on the EU and national governments to provide support for sector programmes that provide transition pathways. IMPALA also points to the need to put culture at the heart of development policies. Besides making up about 4% of the European Union’s GDP and providing about 7.6m jobs in Europe, culture and music can act as catalysts for a just and sustainable transition of the society as a whole due to their unique ability to reach wide audiences. The value of culture should be reflected in all high-level initiatives, including future COP summits, for example by incorporating a theme day for culture and investigating how culture can be perceived as part of the solution.

Initiatives like Music Declares Emergency, Music Climate Pact and the Guide to Music and the SDGs serve as good examples of how music can be mobilised in climate action and should be further encouraged and supported.

Horst Weidenmüller, CEO of !K7 Music, Chair of IMPALA’s Sustainability Task Force, commented: “Taking climate action can seem daunting and complex without a support mechanism. To make the process simpler, we developed a robust tool for all IMPALA members to use, complete with helpdesk. The next step is to start measuring and doing that together means we have a common approach.”

Will Hutton, Head of Sustainability at Beggars Group and member of IMPALA’s Sustainability Task Force, added: “Companies wanting to make a difference will have a competitive advantage if they take responsibility for their own carbon impact and account for it in a scientific and responsible manner. IMPALA’s carbon calculator and revised climate targets give music companies in Europe the ability to do that in a systemic manner.”

Peter Quicke, Chair of Ninja Tune and member of IMPALA’s Sustainability Task Force commented: “Collective action is key to achieving meaningful change. Initiatives such as Music Declares Emergency and the member-funded IMPALA carbon calculator show that music can play a vital role in the climate movement. Let’s use the voice of music to promote climate messaging.”

Chiara Badiali, Music Lead at Julie’s Bicycle who power IMPALA’s carbon calculator: Being able to measure using the same standards means we can create shared understanding and make progress much more quickly. It shows both the power of collective sector action, and where government support for transition pathways is crucial.”

Jacob Sylvester Bilabel, Lead at Aktionsnetzwerk Nachhaltigkeit (DE) and member of IMPALA’s Sustainability Task Force: “With this great initiative, IMPALA is helping to build competence and capacity amongst its members and beyond. With the clear understanding that “transformation is a team sport”, the low barrier and easy-to-use tool can help pioneers to trail-blaze, paving the way for others to follow.”

Helen Smith, Executive Chair of IMPALA concluded: “Our members have shown their appetite for climate action by funding the carbon calculator so we can make it available to all members for free. Our #WeMeasureTogether campaign encourages the whole sector to join up. We count on the EU and national governments at Cop27 to put culture at the heart of climate policies, recognising its key role as a catalyst for change.”

IMPALA was established in 2000 and now represents nearly 6000 independent music companies. 99% of Europe’s music companies are small, micro and medium businesses and self-releasing artists. Known as the independents, they are world leaders in terms of innovation and discovering new music and artists – they produce more than 80% of all new releases and account for 80% of the sector’s jobs. IMPALA’s mission is to grow the independent music sector sustainably, return more value to artists, promote diversity and entrepreneurship, improve political access, inspire change, and increase access to finance. IMPALA works on a range of key issues for its members, runs various award schemes and has a programme aimed at businesses who want to develop a strategic relationship with the independent sector – Friends of IMPALA.

IMPALA – Independent Music Companies Association

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