The European broadcaster Sky is a pioneer in green production. After original productions such as Der Pass and 8 Tage, the shows Masterchef 3 and Quatsch Comedy-Club, the horror series Hausen, and Babylon Berlin will be produced sustainably. Alexandra Coffey, Director of Corporate Responsibility at Sky Germany, discusses the company’s green projects and plans.
What criteria insure that both in-house and commissioned productions are produced sustainably?
In summer 2018, we amended our guidelines for sustainable measures in five areas: energy, transportation and mobility, waste management, and minimizing the use of paper and single-use plastics. In negotiations with producers, we explain that this is part of our corporate strategy. Our production manager, the production company, and the eco-consult- ant determine the measures that can be taken.
What are your experiences with green productions?
During Season 3 of our show Masterchef, an eco-consultant documented all single-use measures taken and calculated carbon emissions. We saved more than two tons of single-use plastics in the catering and set design departments. Call sheets were electronic, which cut paper usage by 80 %.
What are the guidelines for energy and transportation?
These include LED lights, environmentally-friendly generators, and renewables. If this can’t be done, energy consumption is calculated by meter readings and then compensated by offset payments for climate projects. Guidelines for transportation include travel by train instead of plane within a radius of 400 km. Rented automobiles should preferably be hybrid or electric vehicles.
How do you control the application of these measures?
We have to have proof from the service providers. We ask for gasoline receipts to make corresponding offset payments. Our new guidelines require that the last installment be paid only after the presentation of proof that sustainable practices were used. We, as broadcasters, must team up to determine criteria for outside productions. If broadcasters suggest that productions follow green shooting standards, then suppliers will have an incentive to invest in infrastructure.
What green productions are in the pipeline?
The horror series Hausen will be produced in 2019. And Season 3 of Babylon Berlin, a collaboration with X Filme, ARD Degeto, and Beta Film is being produced sustainably.
Photo: © Sky Germany