Spotlight Programme participants

Spotlight on carbon emissions

Since 2012, Arts Council National Portfolio Organisations (NPOs) have been required to annually monitor their environmental impacts, using a carbon foot-printing tool, designed by Julie’s Bicycle, as environmental sustainability partners of Arts Council England.

The data collated over the years revealed that a small proportion of NPOs, typically those with large infrastructures, are responsible for over half of the entire portfolio’s total emissions.

ACE and Julie’s Bicycle developed a dedicated scheme for these organisations – the Spotlight Programme.

NPOs on the programme work to set achievable, yet ambitious, Environmental Impact Reduction Objectives (EIROs). These objectives are grounded in the Science Based Targets initiative, which uses research to predict the CO2e reductions required to keep global warming within 2°C.

Andrew Ellerby, Senior Manager, Environmental Sustainability & Combined Arts, said:

“We’re proud of everything the Arts Council Environmental Programme has achieved so far, but know that much needs to be done in order for the arts and cultural sector to do its part in combating climate change.

We’re excited to begin work with Julie’s Bicycle on this ambitious new programme and hope that its successes will result in a significant change to the sector’s carbon footprint”.

Who’s involved?

Between 2019-2022 a cohort of 30 NPOs will work with Julie’s Bicycle on the Spotlight Programme:

BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Arts

Birmingham Museums Trust

Bristol Museums

Curve Theatre


HOME Manchester

Leeds Museums

National Theatre

Northern Stage

Nottingham Playhouse

Opera North

Royal Exchange Theatre

Royal Liverpool Philharmonic

Royal Opera House

Royal Shakespeare Company

Sadler’s Wells

Sage Gateshead

Serpentine Galleries

Sheffield Theatres

Southbank Centre

The Lyric Hammersmith

Theatre Royal Plymouth

Theatre Royal Stratford East

Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery

Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums

Unicorn Theatre

University of Oxford Museums

Whitechapel Gallery

Whitworth Art Gallery

Young Vic Company

Want to know more?  

We have put together a report detailing how EIRO targets will be determined, how the programme will measure progress and placing these in the context of the UK government’s climate commitments as outlined in the 2008 Climate Change Act.

Download the Spotlight Summary White Paper

Please follow news of the Spotlight Programme from our participants on social media under the following hashtags: #GreenCulture and #JBSpotlight

– Photograph of Sadler’s Wells auditorium taken by Philip Vile

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