Plastic water bottles are turning music festival grounds into a mass synthetic graveyard. According to Rolling Stone, the 2015 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival with 90,000 attendees in Tennessee, produced more than 679 tons of waste of four days. That is equivalent to around 169 tons of waste per day that is produced at the pace of 7 tons an hour. Most of the waste produced comes from plastic water bottles. Since the 50’s, humans have produced more than 18 trillion pounds of plastic. A burden so heavy, that it’s only matched by the volume of 25,000 Empire State Buildings. Whew!

Attendees filling up their bottles

On September 23rd, MSNBC and ComcastNBCUniversal joined forces with our partner Global Citizen at their annual Global Citizen Festival, starting a conversation on the importance of sustainability and water access for people around the world. Artists including Stevie Wonder, Green Day, Demi Lovato and Pharrell took a stance, lending their celebrity to solutions that can help end extreme poverty and provide clean drinking water for all.


On this particularly warm summer day in New York City, MSNBC and Comcast NBCUniversal set up multiple water stations around the main stage in Central Park. Volunteers distributed re-fillable water bottles and filled the compostable cups of thirsty festivalgoers. With more than 60,000 attendees, this effort shined a light on the abundance of plastic water bottles amassed at music festivals and large gatherings. By filling reusable bottles, we highlighted some important facts about drinking water and the necessity for access to clean drinking water for all.


MSNBC and Comcast NBCUniversal continue to partner with pro-social organizations like Global Citizen to bring positive change in our communities. Missed Global Citizen Festival? Continue the conversation and catch-up on all the highlights