Abbey Road Goes Green as Universal U.K. Partners With Green Energy Provider

Abbey Road Studios 2016
Jan Klos

Abbey Road Studios in London.

The world famous studio will be powered by 'Ecotricity.'

Almost half a century after The Beatles recorded “Here Comes The Sun” within its famous walls, London’s Abbey Road Studios is once again embracing the sun’s rays, following the announcement that green energy company Ecotricity is to take over as its power supplier.

The world famous studio is one of four Universal Music facilities that will be powered by Ecotricity, including its Kensington High Street U.K. head office. Abbey Road was acquired by Universal in 2012 as part of its $1.9 billion EMI deal and has recently undergone significant expansion, building three new recording spaces and launching a number of tech and brand partnerships, including a Google VR tour and the launch of the Abbey Road Institute, providing training in audio engineering and music production.

“Universal is committed to sustainability, as are many of our artists, and we hope other organizations will follow our lead and take similar steps to power their operations with green energy,” said David Sharpe, Universal Music U.K. COO in a statement.

The deal follows Universal Music U.K. being awarded three-star certification under the Industry Green sustainability kitemark, awarded to creative organizations with a “systematic, achievable and inspiring approach to environmental sustainability.”

Ecotricity was founded in 1995 as the world’s first green energy company and now supplies almost 200,000 customers across Britain with electricity generated by wind and solar power.

“Powering a business with green energy is the biggest single step that any business can take to cut the emissions that cause air pollution and climate change,” said Ecotricity founder Dale Vince. He added that by switching to green energy, “Universal Music U.K. will reduce the environmental impact of their own operations, while also supporting Britain’s energy independence and the green economy.”

The record company’s conversion to green energy comes in the same week that Apple announced it had struck a deal to buy power from a proposed 200-megawatt solar farm in Nevada to supply its data center in Reno. The tech giant has long been committed to minimizing its carbon footprint, with 93 percent of its offices, retail stores, and data centers around the world run on renewable energy. In 23 countries, including the United States, U.K., China, and Australia, the California-based company’s energy use is 100 percent green, according to the Apple website.

Facebook and Google have also made sustainability a key part of their business. In 2015, 35 percent of all power used by Facebook came from clean and renewable energy (CaRE) sources, with the company committed to reaching 50 percent by 2015. Google has been carbon neutral since 2007 amd says it will reach 100 percent renewable energy for its global operations and 60,000 staff this year.


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