How Jack Johnson Is Walking the Path to Sustainability
Advocacy Popular musician Jack Johnson speaks up about sustainability and life as a newly appointed UNEP Goodwill Ambassador.
When did you first become engaged with advocacy for the environment?
Jack Johnson: Growing up in Hawaiʻi, my friends and I pretty much lived in the ocean. The advocacy began when I was first able to gather a small crowd with my music. Groups like Surfrider Foundation, Heal the Bay and Heal the Ocean began to approach me about doing fundraisers and community outreach. That feeling of using music to create positive change in a community was so fulfilling. It became a driving force behind my music career.
What does being a UNEP Goodwill Ambassador mean to you?
In Hawaiʻi when we work together we say “laulima,” which means "many hands.” It is always impressive to see what can be accomplished when you build the right team. I see this relationship with UNEP as a way to reach and inspire more people to be active in their local communities, as well as a way for me to learn more about environmental issues around the world.
How would you urge readers to take on a more sustainable lifestyle?
I would encourage everyone to get involved with a local environmental non-profit group. Shopping at farmers markets or grocery stores that support local farmers helps cut down on emissions caused by shipping food long distances.
Challenge yourself to reduce your plastic footprint. So much of that footprint comes from single-use plastic, which is easy to avoid with a reusable water bottle and shopping bag. Make it a habit to bring these items wherever you go.
What is the part of the sustainability lifestyle you love the most?
It keeps my mind active and enthusiastic—specifically time spent learning in the garden with my kids. It seems that when my actions are leading me on what I believe to be the right path, a sustainable path, I feel more at peace with the world around me.