Pollstar: Q’s with Jack and Kim Johnson on Sustainable Concerts Working Group’s BYOBottle Campaign

“On Earth Day this year, the final day of Bluesfest Byron Bay in Australia, Jack Johnson has formally announced the BYOBottle campaign, the first coordinated campaign of the Sustainable Concerts Working Group to effect change in the industry.

The campaign was modeled after Green Music Australia’s campaign, which enlisted artist ambassadors to adopt language in their riders to avoid use of disposable/plastic bottles at events and instead to provide jugs, taps or refilling stations and, if desired, to add reusable bottles as tour merchandise.

Along with helping the venues and promoters try alternate systems, a big goal of the campaign is to promote the use of reusable bottles among audiences, helping make the connection between their favorite artists and this behavior that reduces waste.

The Aussie campaign was comprised almost entirely of Aussie artists (including Paul Kelly, Missy Higgins, and Midnight Oil) but included Jack Johnson as its international ambassador. Now the SCWG – of which Johnson and his wife Kim are a part, along with Live Nation, AEG, C3 Presents, REVERB, Effect Partners, Plastic Pollution Coalition, festival producer Synergy Global Entertainment, and booking agency Partisan Arts – seeks to bring the same strategy global.

Artists already signed on for the campaign include Pink, Dead & Company, Maroon 5, The Lumineers, Bonnie Raitt, Ben Harper, Lukas Nelson, Jackson Browne, Keb’ Mo’, Wilco, Steven Van Zandt, Steve Earle and Empire Of The Sun. Festivals on board with the campaign include C3 events, (Lollapalooza, ACL Festival, Sea.Hear.Now), Telluride, Splendour In The Grass and Falls Festival.

The Johnsons spoke to Pollstar about some of the goals of the campaign and their experience working with sustainability in the concert industry.”