Dave Matthews Band Takes Action Against Climate Change
January 7th, 2003
Rock Band is First to Create Climate Cool™ Tour as part of One Sweet Whirled Campaign
In an unprecedented move in the entertainment industry, the Dave Matthews Band (DMB) is announcing today that as part of the One Sweet Whirled campaign, the band has certified its 2002 national tour “Climate Cool™.” The band is offsetting the carbon dioxide emissions produced during last year’s tour in an effort to minimize the tour’s impact on climate change.
With its 2002 tour, the Dave Matthew’s Band became the first musical group ever to receive this Climate Cool™ certification, joining organizations such as the 2002 Winter Olympic Games and leading Fortune 500 companies which have also received the nationally recognized certification mark.
The Climate Neutral Network, a non-profit organization endorsed by leading environmental groups such as Natural Resources Defense Council and World Resources Institute, certified the band’s Climate Cool ™ tour, reviewing the tour’s emissions estimates and their portfolio of offset projects in order to ensure that they credibly achieved their net zero Climate Cool™ goal.
The band’s offset portfolio, the projects that will offset the tour’s carbon dioxide emissions, includes the construction of a large scale wind turbine and a tree-planting project.
“We felt that we should take responsibility for the greenhouse gases that we release into the atmosphere as a result of our tour,” said Dave Matthews Band. “More importantly, we hope our small step toward combating global warming will encourage others to join in protecting our planet and ourselves against climate change.”
“The Dave Matthews Band is setting a very cool example for other music tours and fans to emulate” said Sue Hall, executive director of Climate Neutral Network. “Their Climate Cool™ tour demonstrates how we can all credibly achieve a net zero impact on the earth’s climate.”
DMB is the first music tour to ensure that the carbon emissions produced during the five month, 50 city tour have been offset by projects that will either absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere or reduce future greenhouse gases by producing alternative energy sources that do not burn fossil fuels.
MusicMatters, the group that brought the band together with SaveOurEnvironment.org and Ben & Jerry’s to create the One Sweet Whirled Global Warming Campaign, calculated the band’s CO2footprint in conjunction with the band’s management. The band’s CO2 footprint is the total metric tons of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere either directly from emissions from its tour buses and airline miles or indirectly from electricity used at musical venues and at hotels during the tour.
Working with NativeEnergy, the Dave Matthews Band will offset most of the tour’s carbon dioxide emissions by supporting the construction of the first large-scale Native American-owned and operated wind turbine on the Rosebud Sioux Reservation in South Dakota, a project NativeEnergy is supporting through its WindBuilderssm program. The turbine will reduce carbon dioxide emissions by displacing electricity that would otherwise be generated by burning fossil fuels.
Through their collaborative work on the DMB offset program, NativeEnergy and MusicMatters have created MusicMatters® CoolToursm, a specialty program that offers the music industry a simple way to certify their tours as Climate Cool™, offsetting the carbon emissions they generate by helping to build new wind farms.
According to Tom Boucher, NativeEnergy’s president and CEO, “the Dave Matthews Band’s first-of-a-kind action sets the stage for the music industry and fans worldwide to take responsibility for the global warming impact of their everyday energy use.”
DMB also will partner with The Nature Conservancy, the largest non-profit conservation organization, to plant 900 trees as part of a habitat restoration project in Albemarle County, Virginia, near the band’s hometown of Charlottesville. The trees will soak up carbon dioxide, reducing the build-up of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. The Conservancy is planting native hardwoods to restore streamside forest and forested wetlands at the site, and the DMB contribution will help create a wooded upland buffer. The Conservancy identified the property as a high priority for conservation action due to its strategic location at the confluence of the North and South Forks of the Rivanna River.
“Native forest restoration can play an important role in helping address global warming because of the capacity of trees to absorb carbon dioxide, a key greenhouse gas," said Tia Nelson, director of The Nature Conservancy's Climate Change Program. "We are thrilled that the Dave Matthews Band has recognized the environmental service that forests play not only in contributing to a solution for global warming, but also in creating valuable habitat that sustains and protects biodiversity."
Receiving “Climate CoolTM” certification of its 2002 tour is part of DMB’s larger efforts to promote awareness of global warming and climate change, to encourage individuals to take personal action and to encourage them to voice their concerns to Congress. Their One Sweet Whirled campaign, in partnership with Ben & Jerry’s and SaveOurEnvironment.org, launched in April 2002, has resulted in over 70,000 letters of support being delivered to Congress and has generated individual pledges to reduce over 210 million pounds of carbon dioxide.