The German rock bands “Die Ärzte” and “Die Toten Hosen” provided four concerts at Tempelhofer Feld in Berlin in August 2022. This so-called “Tempelhof Lab” aimed to accelerate the transformation towards a circular economy, from cradle to cradle (C2C). The project initiators Cradle to Cradle NGO, KKT GmbH – Kikis Kleiner Tourneservice, Loft Concerts GmbH, Side by Side Eventsupport GmbH, together with numerous partners from the field, tested the most climate and resource-positive products, processes and innovations possible and their scalability. Where this was not possible – due to a lack of technical implementation options or for cost reasons – the best-possible ecological alternatives were implemented. The goal was to use the concert series to show how existing circular and sustainable solutions (cradle-to-cradle) create economic, ecological and social added value for society – and which political and economic framework conditions are still missing to be able to scale these innovations.
The concerts became a test site for C2C innovations and sustainable alternatives planned and implemented in the areas of mobility & logistics, energy, nutrients, food & agriculture, water, construction & housing, textiles, plastics & packaging and digitisation. In cooperation with the Boston Consulting Group and adelphi, the impact of these measures was analysed and will be transparently published in a guidebook as a blueprint for the events industry. This report describes missing and misdirecting framework conditions that were identified during the concerts and the impact evaluation.
During the evaluation, it became clear that political and economic incentives and framework conditions must be realigned in such a way that they enable and accelerate the necessary transformation from a linear to a circular economy. This framework must ensure that economic and social action always achieves economic, ecological and social added value. In their current form, the legislative projects and amendments discussed at EU and federal level for the political goal of a circular economy are not sufficient to bring about real change. This is particularly evident in the expansion of renewable energies, where the circularity of production facilities is not taken into account; in the lack of quality standards for textile and plastic products, which should include social aspects in addition to material health and circularity; and in the current agricultural policy, which is being negotiated separately from the EU's Circular Economy Action Plan and thus ignores the nutrient cycles to be closed between industry and agriculture.
As the Tempelhof Lab demonstrated, these regulatory gaps do not only apply in the event context. They must be closed in order to achieve the political goal of a true circular economy.
For more information on the transformation project "Tempelhof Lab", please visit the project website (German only).