Voluntary Self-Commitment and Declaration of Actors and Actresses for “Shooting Green”
With this voluntary self-commitment we want to take on responsibility because we believe that change always starts with ourselves. We want to find new ways and solutions to make the production of films more sustainable and responsible.
All unions contribute to the carbon footprint of a film. That is why we decided to involve the unions since we don’t have direct influence over them.
We want to open up space for this conversation and to share our ideas that we co-developed with the different departments.
By working together, we can maximize the full potential to reduce the carbon footprint of each film production.
We would love to see colleagues from other departments sign our self-commitment or
consider it an inspiration to start their own.
The following 13 bullet points outline our ideal situation for “Shooting Green” which we want to work towards with you.
We are convinced that good communication is key to creating new ways of working together. When you know the why of a new behavior it becomes easier to give up old behaviors. That is why we recommend to raise concerns about possible deviations from our environmental goals as early as during pre-production and warm-up. We want to be in early and active exchange with directors, producers, the Green Consultant as well as costume designers, make-up artists and production designer to
conserve resources. We ask producers and directors to talk with their respective departments about measures to reduce
energy and material-consumption.
2. Travel and Transport
The carbon footprint of travel and transport are still one of the biggest environmental factors of a film or TV production. That is why we aim to categorically minimize traveling and to choose low-emission options. Traveling by train domestically and across Europe is currently the most environmentally friendly and preferred option. We ask that production teams to make it possible and optimize for travel plans by train for actors and actresses. We are only willing to fly by airplane when there is no
other choice. In the case of flying by airplane, the resulting carbon offset should be paid to a recognized
We wish for pooled and low-emission transport of materials and daily commutes to and from the set. We prefer electric, hybrid and CNG-powered vehicles over diesel and gasoline-based options.
Hotels often are the source, next to travel and transport, of the biggest carbon footprint of a production. That is why we prefer apartments or hotels with high environmental standards close to the set and the other teams in order to to reduce rides and
car-pools as much as possible. On-set accommodation using trailers and campers also emit large amounts of CO2.
To solve this problem we are open to finding environmentally friendly alternatives together.
The production of food is a major driver in this man-made climate change because it has, depending on which ingredient,
a very high carbon footprint. That is why we ask that set and production catering choose primarily biological, local and
seasonal ingredients. In particular, meat and dairy products are to be reduced to the absolute minimum and vegan options
should be offered instead. In communication with production and set teams we want to achieve that meat of the highest ecological “bio” quality is served once per week. If it is not possible to source animal-based products that were grown sustainably and species-appropriate we choose to decline the option because we do not support any products that result
from factory farming. We strongly believe that a conscious, healthy and premium diet contributes directly to the team’s ability
to perform on set at their best. To ensure this requirement, the allowance for food per person will have to be increased. This increase in costs should be covered by the commissioning broadcasting stations and film funds. To better plan and avoid wasting food, we encourage the producers to ask their team ahead of time which type and quality of ingredients
their teams would like.
The carbon footprint and the conditions under which new fabrics are produced are in many cases very poor. That is why we prefer to use clothes from existing costume pools and vintage clothing stores because we can avoid waste and often increase quality. We ask to do without buying fast fashion and discount clothing. Instead, we encourage to create relationships and co-operations with sustainable manufacturers. In agreement with production, we can provide non-visible clothing such as underwear, socks and, when applicable and warm clothing. We are also willing to provide personal items of clothing if it is in agreement with costume design and direction and fits the role and personal comfort levels.
Many makeup and hair products contain microplastics and other environmentally harmful ingredients. We want to waive the use of such products and prefer natural, animal-testing-free makeup products instead. We ask to also check hair products for environmental certifications and levels of sustainability. We also want to reduce trash. When using one-way products, we ask to use those made from sustainable resources.
7. Plastics, Reducing Trash and Recycling
To avoid plastic packaging and waste, we consciously choose to not use one-way products and ask production, stations and distributors to do the same. If this is not possible – due to mandatory sanitary measures – we ask to use biodegradable packaging.
We are happy to bring reusable alternatives such as our own cups and bottles to the set. If this is not possible, we ask to offer reusable bottles for a small deposit that we can refill at the water coolers. All resulting waste and materials are to be recycled and/or separated, including biodegradable waste. We ask that scripts are only printed on-demand and on recycled paper. We ask to only rely on environmentally friendly office supplies.
Every object tells a story. We hope that we can increase awareness for sustainability and how it can be reconciled with the script. We would like to not use non-sustainable props if there are no sustainable alternatives and utilize used props whenever possible.
9. Production Design & Furnishing
We ask to avoid plastics and styrofoam and instead prioritize re-usable or certified environmentally friendly materials. Furniture should be rented instead of purchased. After production ends, purchased items should be re-sold or stored for regular use in the future.
10. Electricity and Post-Production
We ask producers and directors to require their electricity teams to save energy and avoid excessive waste of material. Where possible, power should be sourced from green energy providers. If electric generators are used, we ask that gas-based, hybrid, or mobile energy-saving systems are chosen. Generally, LED lights are to be used preferably. We should ask ourselves how much artificial light actually has to be used and in what creative ways can we use daylight instead. We ask to not use one-way batteries and use rechargeable batteries instead. When choosing studios and post-production, we look for those with lower carbon footprint and environmental certifications. If possible, local distributors are to be preferred to reduce transportation.
We are aware how much the films, stories, and images that we as film-makers create have exemplary function. That is why we want to be responsible with the opportunity that our medium provides us to reach and influence so many people. We examine the images and desires we create: Are they absolutely necessary to tell the story or are we falling back to outdated ideas that have to be re-thought in light of the global climate crisis? For example: Does the protagonist fly by airplane or take the train? Do children have to be dropped off at school by car or do they get there by bike? How many different outfits per role are realistic on a regular day? What do the protagonists eat? Which character also has an ecological consciousness? Are we accounting for diversity and equal rights? True creative freedom is not limited by such questions. On the contrary, Green Storytelling allows us to craft more diverse and more creative stories.
We commit to openly and honestly sharing the experiences we make working in a production with colleagues in other productions, stations, distributors, colleagues and agencies. Discussing challenges and problems has to be part of the conversation because it allows us to learn from one another and motivate each other to make a difference and drive change.
13. Human Resources
This is not just about resource-saving, ecologically sustainable work. We have to consider the resources of each individual contributor as well. This should happen before the production starts and take into account the amount of days of shooting. This way we can ensure sustainable and quality work. We ask that the commissioning studios and film funds plan and budget for fair and humane work conditions.
By signing this document, I commit to standing up for environmental consciousness on set and for making “Shooting Green” an industry-standard.