Concerts Create A Huge Amount Of Waste, And Jack Johnson Is Tackling It Head On
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For Johnson, the riders are a way to chip away at the huge impact the concert industry has on the planet.
According to Pollstar, a concert industry trade magazine, the top 100 tours in 2015 sold an estimated 60 million plastic water bottles (the equivalent of 48,000 barrels of oil) while 130 million paper goods (about 160,000 trees) were used.
But the biggest hit the planet takes from these tours comes from how people get to the shows: 80 to 90 percent of concerts’ carbon emissions come from fans driving en masse to get there.
“I didn’t know if I needed to keep touring, especially when I considered the environmental impact of what I was doing.”Jack Johnson
For Johnson, witnessing all that pollution on a regular basis was discouraging. After shows, he’d look out from the stage and see a sea of plastic bottles and wonder about the pristine, blue waves back at home in Hawaii. He often dreamed of going back to his first job as a surf film cameraman, even though he barely broke even back then.
“I didn’t know if I needed to keep touring, especially when I considered the environmental impact of what I was doing,” Johnson told HuffPost, adding that the record sales made him enough to live off of.
Plastic bottles can be recycled, right?