Dave Matthews Band Fans Filter For Good

Dave Matthews Band fans are stepping up to the group’s challenge to help make its summer tour more green by volunteering at DMB shows’ water refilling stations.

Through a program that began in May, the band has partnered with Brita’s FilterForGood campaign to encourage fans to recycle and reuse bottles.

Rather than buying plastic water bottle after plastic water bottle to beat the heat at summer shows, DMB hopes fans will refill containers at water stations offering Brita filtered tap water.

Fans can either bring their own bottles or buy a compostable cup made out of corn.

“When we’re faced with a real problem where everyone should be getting together and saying, ‘How do we solve this?’ there are too many of our political leaders that say, ‘No way, I can’t get involved,’” Dave Matthews said in a video posted online titled “Touring Green Episode 3.”

“But you just ask a young person or 10 young people, ‘What are you going to do?’ they’ll [say] ‘Give me the opportunity and I’ll do something. I’m not running for an office. I’m running for my future.’ If we can employ the power and our passion of our young people, they’ll lead us in the right direction.”

Photo: Andrew Markowitz
CMAC Performing Arts Center, Canadaigua, NY

The band hired Effect Partners, a Minneapolis-based sustainability marketing company, which then recruited volunteers for each concert through local environmental groups such as the Berks County Conservancy in Reading, Pa.

The Associated Press checked in with DMB’s summer tour at its July 9 gig at Hersheypark Stadium in Hershey, Pa. Fans that gave a few hours of their time were rewarded by getting into the concert for free.

Kim Lewis, Berks County Conservancy director, volunteered for four hours.

“We went through 500 of those [compostable] cups,” Lewis said. “We told them that Dave Matthews was trying to offset their environmental imprint. He encourages his fans to recycle and reuse a bottle if you have one.”

She added that the “concert was great.”

Frank Deus of Effect Parners’ human resources department told the AP that there were so many fans eager to volunteer at the Hershey gig that they actually had to turn people away.

Deus notes that DMB’s 2009 tour green initiative collected more than 31 tons of recyclables.

Earlier this month Jack Johnson announced he was teaming up with Brita’s FilterForGood campaign.

“Being someone who spends a lot of time in the ocean I see firsthand the amount of plastic that washes up on our shores,” Johnson said in a statement, according to EarthTimes.org. “A solution we can all make is to reduce our dependence on single use plastics. I’m happy to be teaming up with Brita to bring water stations to every show on my US tour and encourage people to use alternatives to single use plastic water bottles.”

Brita’s FilterForGood has also worked with U2, Lady Antebellum and Ben Harper.

Click here for the Dave Matthews Band website.

Click here for Brita’s FilterForGood Facebook page.

Click here for the Associated Press story.