Rolling out the GREEN carpet at Wexford Festival Opera

Opera-goers encouraged to wear a touch of green to symbolise how even small changes can help protect the environment

The Green Carpet will be laid out for patrons attending Wexford Festival Opera on Tuesday, 30 October as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) comes together with Wexford Festival Opera to go ‘Green’ on the night to highlight how even small individual changes can have a big positive impact on the environment.

The initiative invites opera-goers on the night to make a small, symbolic change to their attire, signifying a commitment to making ‘small changes’ in their lives to help the environment. People are encouraged to make a small change to their opera-wear that evening, such as a green bow-tie, a green piece of jewellery, a green pocket square, green shoes, green nail varnish; the possibilities are endless! Patrons will also enter that night via a green carpet at the front entrance of the National Opera House, which will be bathed in green light. The message is that small changes can make a great difference. 

Since the Festival and the EPA introduced the Green Carpet Night event three years ago it has been met with an overwhelming response from the audience and volunteers. Welcoming the green carpet night, Laura Burke, Director General of the Environmental Protection Agency said, “We have, by any measure, experienced an extraordinary 12 months where our environment, our climate, reminded us of the fragile nature of our infrastructure, our economy and food production systems, and by extension our wellbeing.  A year where nature reminded us who is in charge. A year which has focussed us on what we need to do to stop aggravating the situation and to adapt.    

“By promoting the importance of the environment at Wexford Festival Opera we hope to inspire people to take some small steps to protect and improve it, be this in your home, your workplace or in your community. We all own the environment and have a responsibility for its care and protection.  Even small changes make a difference and are very welcome.”

The EPA’s headquarters is based in Johnstown Castle Estate, Wexford and the agency has been part of the local community for the last 25 years. It has worked with Wexford Festival Opera for many years through various EPA-led initiatives to raise awareness on a variety of environmental issues such as how we can all make choices about how we heat our homes; how we consume water and how we manage our wastes.

Chief Executive of Wexford Festival Opera, David McLoughlin said,

“Greening the National Opera House, on one of the main performance nights of this year’s Festival, symbolically underlines Wexford Opera’s support of the EPA’s great work in fostering best environmental awareness and good practice. A year on from hurricane Ophelia, which directly impacted on so many people and caused considerable disruption to last year’s Festival, this environmental and climate-change awareness initiative is even more timely and relevant than heretofore. We thank and applaud the EPA, the Festival’s long established community and environmental partner, as well as our patrons and performers for their enthusiastic involvement in this novel initiative, which reinforces their individual commitment to making changes which result in positive environmental impacts.”


The EPA’s LiveGreen web pages provide advice, awareness and education about living sustainably at home and in your community. Some of the small changes the EPA asks people to commit to making include the following:

Stop Food Waste: Research shows that people waste food because they buy too much of it or they don’t use it on time. Writing a shopping list reduces food waste.  Other tips that help include: don’t go shopping when you are hungry, you’ll buy more than you need.  Better still, buy your groceries online as you won’t get distracted.

Take an active role in positively influencing behaviours that will result in improved health and environmental outcomes in your home, community. Tips for this can be found at Advice for businesses is available at

Download the "See It? Say It!" app to your phone and report environmental pollution if you see it.

If your washing machine, dishwasher or dryer has an economy button/reduced time–temperature, then use it whenever you can.

It is best to always keep the fridge and freezer as full as is reasonably possible.

Appliances on standby can use up to 20 per cent of the energy that they would use if switched on, so make sure they are fully switched off, e.g., TVs, PCs, DVDs, VCRs, printers, games consoles, satellite boxes/players/recorders and kitchen appliances etc.

If your hot water is being heated by the central heating boiler and your hot-water cylinder has a thermostat, you should set the thermostat to 65 °C. 

Check for leaks in your water supply or internal plumbing issues using the links here:

When considering purchasing something new ask yourself… Do I really need it? Can I produce it myself? Do I need a new one? Can I use a repair and restoration service such as that provided by, for example, the Rediscovery Centre:

The 67th Wexford Festival Opera runs from 19 October to 4 November 2018. For more details CLICK HERE