(Linz, Dec. 16, 2022) Since November 28, 2022, Ars Electronica has officially become a member of Europe’s largest climate protection network. The partnership underscores the company’s aspiration and mission to further improve its climate footprint in the years ahead.
The most important at a glance
- Climate Alliance Partnership since 28.11.2022
- Green Event: Ars Electronica Festival 2022
- Climate protection measures in the company and energy savings in the Ars Electronica Center
- Climate protection strategy and voluntary commitment for the future
Since its founding in 1979, Ars Electronica has been active at the interface between art, technology and society. As an employer for more than 200 employees, as the operator of a Museum of the Future, a festival, a research laboratory and as a service provider for international companies, Ars Electronica Linz GmbH & Co KG has a radius of influence that extends far beyond the Linz metropolitan area. Accordingly, it is important, albeit challenging, to keep the company’s ecological footprint as small as possible.
Significant steps in this direction have already been taken, and many more should and will follow. It is precisely this commitment, in turn, that Ars Electronica can officially call itself a “Climate Alliance Partner” from now on. “The partnership with the Climate Alliance is intended to be a motivating, public signal that Ars Electronica has set out to strive for the climate goals that have been set and to achieve them as quickly as possible,” states the first Climate Check that the Climate Alliance has prepared.
Addressing the content
Ars Electronica’s content-related debate focuses on the big questions of the 21st century-essentially, on the development of an ecologically, socially and economically sustainable society. Whether in the Museum of the Future (currently with the exhibition “There is no Planet B” on the energy transition and the interactive application “Welcome to Planet B” in Deep Space 8K on the fight against climate catastrophe), in the form of the Festival for Art, Technology and Society Festival (in 2022, everything revolved around the theme “Welcome to Planet B”) or services provided by Ars Electronica Solutions (in the context of workshops, companies are advised on sustainability issues) – together with scientists and artists from all over the world, promising approaches to solutions are sketched out, and discourse with a broad public is initiated in the context of conferences, exhibitions, workshops and guided tours.
Climate protection efforts to date
Environmental and climate protection are increasingly shaping the organization itself. From exhibition architecture to catering and merchandising to IT equipment for team members-wherever possible, the Ars Electronica Festival relies on circular economy and waste avoidance or reuse. The 2022 edition of the festival was awarded the Green Event label. Thanks to the consistent digitalization of internal processes, paper consumption throughout the company has been substantially reduced. For intra-European business trips (within a radius of 800 km), rail is preferred as a means of transport – the use of other (more climate-damaging) means of transport requires explicit justification and approval. Within the framework of cooperations – for example with LINZ AG or the climate ticket – the use of public transport by our employees and visitors is promoted. Great successes have also been achieved with regard to electricity consumption at the Ars Electronica Center: From 2018 to 2022, consumption was reduced from 1.63 to (probably) 1.21 million kWh per year.
Mission for the future
The Climate Alliance partnership will reinforce the company’s previous efforts. Consistent optimization of building and equipment technology will further reduce energy requirements. Likewise, the digitalization of internal processes will be further advanced. In order to be able to make sustainable investments, more funding will be sought in the area of climate protection. And last but not least, the City of Linz’s “Eco Guidelines” will be implemented – the goal of the resolution passed by the Linz City Council in 2022 is eco-social procurement. All of this is embedded in the development of a long-term sustainability strategy, which is accompanied at all times by communication measures to further promote climate protection awareness among visitors and employees.
A broad alliance for the climate
The Climate Alliance is the largest municipal climate protection network in Europe. At its heart is a global partnership between municipalities, institutions and companies in Europe and indigenous organizations in the Amazon region. The common goal is to work for climate protection, climate justice and a sustainable lifestyle. The common motto here is “Think globally, act locally.”
“The climate crisis is the greatest challenge of our generation. The large network of Climate Alliance companies in Upper Austria impressively underlines how great the awareness for climate protection is in Upper Austrian companies. In the fight against the man-made climate crisis, we need allies at all levels. I’m especially pleased that Ars Electronica is now part of the Climate Alliance network, and that climate protection is thus being given an even higher priority in Upper Austria’s digital transformation.”
Stefan Kaineder, Environment and Climate Regional Councillor
“I’m very pleased that Ars Electronica is now the first major arts and cultural institution in the state to become a Climate Alliance member. It’s an expression of a sustainability philosophy that has long characterized the City of Linz and its group of companies and that is being consistently implemented.”
Klaus Luger, Mayor of the City of Linz
“Sustainability and climate protection are also and above all cultural values. For years, therefore, they’ve been among Ars Electronica’s core themes-they’ve been at the center of its exhibitions, conferences, workshops and guided tours. The partnership with the Climate Alliance is the next, logical step on this path and expresses future ambitions in terms of climate protection.”
Doris Lang-Mayerhofer, City Councillor for Culture and Chair of the Advisory Board of Ars Electronica
“As a board member of Climate Alliance Europe and Climate Alliance Upper Austria, I’m naturally especially pleased that Ars Electronica, as a municipal enterprise and museum, is now a member of Europe’s largest climate protection network. I thank all those responsible for once again setting an example here!”
Eva Schobesberger, Climate City Councilor
“For the transformation of our society and economy that is taking place, art and culture in particular are important indicators and fields of experimentation: They arouse curiosity about other perspectives and offer new, also emotional approaches to climate protection. We’re therefore very pleased about the cooperation with Ars Electronica, which already exists and will deepen in the future, in the spirit of shaping the future in a positive way.”
Norbert Rainer, Managing Director of Climate Alliance Upper Austria
“For us, climate protection is a question of attitude. Beyond that, however, the efficient use of resources also represents a significant economic lever-especially because we are, after all, an energy-intensive company due to our focus on content and technology. At the same time, this challenge is an opportunity that we, as a Climate Alliance partner, will exploit even more consistently than before in the future.”
Markus Jandl, Commercial Director Ars Electronica
“Resource consumption and climate protection are burning issues of our time and future, and unsurprisingly are also increasingly the linchpin of artistic projects. Presenting and communicating such works in the best possible way can no longer be exhausted by a showy ‘higher – faster – further’ approach, but requires new, creative approaches that we, as a leading international platform for art, technology and society, have to develop and offer.”
Gerfried Stocker, Artistic Director Ars Electronica
Group photo with Markus Jandl (Commercial Director Ars Electronica), Norbert Rainer (Managing Director of Climate Alliance Upper Austria), Doris Lang-Mayerhofer (City Councillor for Culture and Chair of the Advisory Board of Ars Electronica), Klaus Luger (Mayor of the City of Linz), Stefan Kaineder (Environment and Climate Regional Councillor), Gerfried Stocker (Artistic Director Ars Electronica) / Photo: vog.photo / Printversion
Facade Ars Electronica Center / Photo: Robert Bauernhansl / Printversion