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January 13, 2020

Four Toyota Mirais Partially Powered U2's Concert in Japan

For those lucky enough to watch U2 at their Tokyo show last month, they’ll be surprised to know that that the concert was partially powered by the hydrogen-fueled Toyota Mirai.

This little tidbit was revealed in an entry in U2’s Official Blog. There, U2 detailed that at their December 5 show in Tokyo, The Edge’s guitar, Adam Clayton’s bass, and the entire backline—guitar and bass amplifiers, audio effects, and system control all ran on clean hydrogen power. Four Toyota Mirai Fuel Cell Vehicles (FCV) were parked backstage, providing power from clean and renewable sources. Several Honda Power Exporter 9000s were used to convert the FCV’s direct current electricity to alternating current (AC) power.

U2 are the first international touring band to use hydrogen power at a show, and the second Tokyo gig was the first sold-out show to use this energy source to power the backline.

Using hydrogen power is the latest innovation in the band’s ongoing efforts to reduce and mitigate the environmental impact of global touring. These included the elimination of all single-use plastics, ethical and sustainably-sourced catering (including vegan and vegetarian offerings), and compost and recycling in the tour's kitchens as well as in its offices (including batteries, ink cartridges, and scrap metal); and a trash-to-art scheme where used guitar strings and drum heads, are collected and donated to partners who repurpose them into artwork. Additionally, used batteries are donated to local nonprofits.

Moreover during The Joshua Tree 2019 tour, environmental reporting and carbon emissions-tracking metrics were used to calculate the tour's overall environmental impact—including greenhouse gas emissions—and to offset the tour's carbon footprint.

On transportation-related emissions, for instance, the model number of every truck, bus, limo, and aircraft used throughout the tour in order to track meticulously the total mileage, which determines total CO2 emissions, which are then offset.


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