Star Wars Episode 7: The Galaxy Goes Green

Star Wars.

The most talked about movie of the year is also an award recipient for its sustainable film production practices. The Environmental Media Association (EMA) awarded Star Wars Episode 7: The Force Awakens with a 2015 EMA Green Seal Award based on the Green Seal Award Program.

Star Wars Episode 7’s green production practices focused on energy sourcing and waste reduction. All stages and workshops were fitted with smart meters and equipment tied into the electricity grid when possible to avoid the use of diesel generators. The production avoided approximately 1,224 hours of generator running time, 102 metric tons of C02, and roughly 1,944 gallons or $9,200 of diesel.

The production also diverted 75% of its waste away from landfills. This was achieved through recycling, composting, reuse, and donated material. Approximately two 40-yard dumpsters of polystyrene were donated to an organization that collects clean polystyrene for use as stuffing in toys. Production also sent approximately 528 gallons of cooking oil to be refined and turned into biodiesel.

In addition to Star Wars Episode 7, 25 other feature films, 32 television series, and the Screen Actors Guild® were recognized with EMA Green Seal Awards in 2015.

“We are thrilled to award these productions for their environmental stewardship,” said Gary Petersen, co-chair of the EMA Business Board and past chair of the Green Seal board of directors. “The excellent example that they set will provide leadership in the industry and help protect our environment for future generations.”

The EMA Green Seal Award honors productions and corporate entertainment offices that make environmentally conscious efforts through resource conservation, energy usage, recycling, set construction, and more. The award criteria cover all facets of a production that result in environmentally responsible filmmaking and event planning. In each area of focus, the criteria include specific environmental actions in order to help producers focus their greening efforts.

Green Seal has partnered with EMA since the 1990s to promote and recognize more sustainable production. The award is based on a self-assessment by the production company on how well it complies with the criteria developed by EMA and Green Seal. Comprehensive guidelines have been created for production, sourcing, green events, and contracting, and are available for free download.