SEATTLE (March 29, 2010) – Pearl Jam announced today that it will voluntarily mitigate carbon emissions from the band’s 2009 world tour by partnering with the Cascade Land Conservancy (CLC), a national leader in urban forest restoration, to plant approximately 33 acres of native trees and plants in communities around the Puget Sound. Pearl Jam’s donation of $210,000 will fund the urban forestry project and mitigate more than 7,000 metric tons of carbon. Conservation International chief adviser, climate and water, Michael Totten estimates Pearl Jam’s actual carbon emissions from its 32-date 2009 tour to be 5,474 metric tons of CO2. The band will also track, calculate and mitigate its carbon for their current 2010 tour.
“A band on tour generates a lot of carbon,” said Stone Gossard, Pearl Jam’s guitarist and founder. “We are constantly moving, using carbon-dependent forms of transportation and a great deal of energy. Since 2003, we have elected to mitigate our carbon output by tracking and calculating our emissions and contributing money to projects that strategically work to improve the environment. We view this as a cost of doing business.”
For their 2009 tour mitigation, Gossard and the band decided to partner with CLC’s community-based stewardship program to remove invasive plants and replant with native shrubs and trees in order to address the serious decline of urban forested areas. The restoration efforts, beginning immediately, will be in partnership with local city agencies and community volunteers and will be completed by December 2013.
“Trees are incredible at absorbing carbon,” said Gene Duvernoy, CLC president. “Pearl Jam’s contribution will enable us to plant urban forests throughout the Puget Sound and restore native trees and understory to ecosystems that have faced intense human pressures. This sort of approach has an enormous impact on improving forest health, connecting people to nature, and activating communities to engage in the restoration and stewardship of natural open spaces,” said Duvernoy.
Pearl Jam and CLC believe businesses, decision-makers and policy-makers have an opportunity to lead by example in creating a sustainable green economy by mitigating and reducing the use of fossil-based energy.
“Businesses have an opportunity to lead the way in becoming a more conscious economy, one that views the health of our environment as inseparable from our personal and economic well being,” said Gossard. “Tracking and mitigating the band’s carbon footprint is a big first step that our business is taking in that direction, and we hope other businesses will join us in this effort.”
Gossard continues, “We can encourage businesses and people to innovate and dream of products, ideas and modern approaches to doing business that not only benefit us financially in the short term, but benefit our earth and humanity in the long term.”
Innovative partnerships are at the core of CLC.
“We have a bold vision at CLC,” said Duvernoy. “Through partnerships and innovative approaches we aim to conserve more than a million acres of farms, forests and natural areas. To protect our natural landscapes, we must look to our cities. They are the solution. If we can make our neighborhoods spectacular enough for people to choose to live there, then we have an opportunity to save our remaining farms and forests. Great healthy parks make great livable cities.”
Natural forested areas are in serious decline and Pearl Jam’s home state serves as a reminder as to the critical balance nature plays in creating healthy, livable communities.
“We are very fortunate to live in Washington state,” said Gossard. “We have such natural beauty and abundance here with our rivers, forests and wildlife. It’s to our advantage to preserve our resources because it serves so many of our fundamental needs. For example, in the winter our mountains and glaciers store our summer drinking water and hydro power, and our greenbelts give us clean air and a beautiful landscape.”
This is not the first time Pearl Jam has teamed up with CLC. In 1997, CLC partnered with members of Pearl Jam and Soundgarden to help purchase and preserve forest land in the Cascade foothills.
PEARL JAM TOUR CARBON CALCULATION
Pearl Jam’s 2009 carbon emissions were calculated by Michael Totten chief adviser, climate and water for Conservation International, a nonprofit that works with businesses and governments to ensure that sustainable practices are undertaken that preserve biodiversity and reduce climate. The following variables were taken into account: air and bus travel for the band and crew; hotel rooms and nights for the band and crew; the venues at which the band performs; the attendance for each concert; concert equipment freight and transportation; plus a good faith estimate of fan travel to and from each concert.
CASCADE LAND CONERVANCY MITIGATION CALCULATION
The carbon mitigation will come from the reforestation of targeted acres within Cascade Land Conservancy’s network of Green City Partnerships’ cities. The amount of mitigated CO2 is the difference between the current state of the forests and the amount of carbon that will be stored in future forests over the next 125 years. CLC used the US Forest Service’s General Technical Report NE-343 (GTR-NE-343), Methods for Calculating Forest Ecosystem and Harvested Carbon with Standard Estimates for Forest Types of the United States, published in 2006, as the source for estimates of carbon stocks. For more detailed information please visit www.cascadeland.org/our-services
ABOUT PEARL JAM:
Pearl Jam has used its influence to affect change locally and internationally through direct involvement in many environmental and socially conscious issues. Their work to this end has included support of such organizations as The Wild Salmon Center, The Cascade Land Conservancy, Conservation International, Surfrider, Honor the Earth and People for Puget Sound. Alongside these efforts, Pearl Jam implemented its own Carbon Portfolio Strategy beginning with its 2003 tour in an effort to help mitigate the impact of their carbon footprint. By working with and highlighting these groups and others, Pearl Jam ultimately hopes they can help advance preservation of existing ecosystems, restoration of degraded environments, and continued investment in clean, renewable energy technologies.
Since their inception in 1991, Pearl Jam has sold more than 60 million albums worldwide including millions of live bootlegs. The band has released eight (8) previous studio records, two (2) live records, one (1) double-disc b-side record, one (1) double-disc greatest hits record and five (5) live/touring DVDs.
ABOUT CASCADE LAND CONSERVANCY:
Cascade Land Conservancy fills a unique niche as Washington’s largest land conservation, stewardship and community building organization dedicated solely to this region. For more than 20 years, CLC has led efforts to conserve more than 158,000 acres of forests, farms, shorelines, parks and natural areas. It has partnered with dozens of communities across the region to protect and restore our neighborhood trails and parks and helped cities make smart choices about future growth.