Taylor Swift performs onstage for the opening night of "Taylor Swift | The Eras Tour" at State Farm Stadium on March 17, 2023 in Glendale, Arizona.John Medina/Getty Images
In 2023, Taylor Swift topped the list of "biggest celebrity CO2 polluters." The 34-year-old international music sensation has traveled a lot, mostly to see her boyfriend, Travis Kelce of the Kansas City Chiefs. This has led to an incredible 138 tonnes of CO2 emissions in only the last three months of the year.
Swift would need to plant 2282 trees and wait for them to grow for ten years in order to offset the 138 tonnes of carbon that are emitted into the atmosphere as a result of these trips. Taylor Swift's spokesman told media outlets that she had already bought twice as many carbon credits as needed for her Eras tour before it began in March, which excused her own emissions. According to Swift’s team, “The excess credits means Taylor could have accounted for more than enough to cover her latest romance springing up in the middle of her sell-out tour, with her trips to support Kelce upping her carbon emissions alongside her planned tour travels.”
Carbon credits are quantifiable, validated reductions in emissions from approved climate action initiatives. These initiatives lessen, prevent, or eliminate emissions of greenhouse gasses (GHGs). Climate scientists and activists have sharply questioned the idea of utilizing carbon credits and offsets for emissions, claiming that the technique doesn't genuinely lower the quantity of emissions entering the Earth's atmosphere. Compared to other modes of transportation like buses or trains, airplanes release approximately 100 times more CO2 per hour.
Aside from the carbon emissions from Swift’s jets, the Eras tour has caused an uproar in rapid consumption from fans. It’s simple "Taylornomics,” according to the Wall Street Journal. Her shows attract an upward of 100,000 people to a city, boosting the tourism and economy. According to Joseph Pisani of the Wall Street Journal, "fans who did get tickets spent hundreds of dollars on outfits for the show, hiring designers to recreate looks Swift wore on the red carpet or in music videos. They exchanged beaded friendship bracelets spelling out song titles at the concerts." Swift’s shows have an increased environmental impact on fans as well. With many of the outfits most likely only being worn once or thrown out shortly after highlights the fast fashion cultures and the increased environmental footprint.
“Taylor Swift Is the World’s Most Carbon Polluting Celebrity.” Thenewdaily.com.au, 18 Dec. 2023, www.thenewdaily.com.au/life/science/environment/2023/12/18/swift-carbon-emissions. Accessed 25 Dec. 2023.
The Feed. “Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce Romance Is Bad for the Planet. Couple Burns a Whopping $70,779 Jet Fuel In.” The Economic Times, Economic Times, 21 Dec. 2023, economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/international/us/taylor-swift-and-travis-kelce-romance-is-bad-for-the-planet-couple-burns-a-whopping-70779-jet-fuel-in-the-last-three-months/articleshow/106184435.cms. Accessed 25 Dec. 2023.
Nives. “Taylor Swift and Climate Change: Is the Youth “Shaking Off” or Embracing Carbon-Intensive Lifestyles?” Forbes, 12 Sept. 2023, www.forbes.com/sites/prakashdolsak/2023/08/02/taylor-swift-and-climate-change-is-the-youth-shaking-off-or-embracing-carbon-intensive-lifestyles/?sh=f7f02905c086. Accessed 25 Dec. 2023.