Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival Joins the Refill Revolution

PPC member Steelys Drinkware provided free water refill stations and stainless steel cups and bottles; helps Outside Lands divert nearly 300,000 single-use plastic cups and bottles from the waste stream.

There was much to celebrate at the tenth anniversary of Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival Aug. 11-13 in San Francisco, California, USA. Artists such as The Who, Gorillaz, Metallica, Lorde, Tove Lo, and Dawes drew more than 200,000 people to the 3-day festival, and the festival upped its greening efforts by enlisting PPC member Steelys Drinkware to help divert nearly 300,000 single-use plastic cups and bottles from waste.

Steelys sponsored ten free water refill stations that allowed festival-goers to refill their reusable cups and bottles with filtered tap water. The water stations poured 142,092 liters of water over 3 days–the equivalent of saving 284,184 single-use 16-ounce plastic cups and bottles from waste.

In addition to the water refill stations, Steelys produced 4,000 reusable Outside Lands-branded water bottles for sale, and worked with festival organizers to launch a first-of-its-kind reusable wine tumbler program. The festival’s “Winelands” tent featured premium wines from Northern California. The 600 reusable Steelys wine cups sold out in less than four hours.

“The water refill stations are saving mountains of disposable plastic from consumption, and the reusable cups and bottles we produced for Outside Lands are moving much faster than anticipated,” said John Borg, CEO of Steelys, at the the end of the first day of the festival. “The reusable wine cup program was set up as just a humble test of the concept, but the overwhelming demand for the reusable cups is huge. Many people were disappointed that we sold out so fast. This proves to us that fans are very open to trying cool, practical alternatives to single-use disposables.”

“We are always trying to find new ways to improve not only the fan experience, but also our sustainability efforts,” said Rick Farman, co-founder of Outside Lands. “Providing festival goers with an alternative to single-use plastic is one of our waste diversion priorities and we’re proud to be further minimizing our waste impact through this initiative.”

An estimated 100 billion single-use cups and 50 billion single-use bottles are consumed in the U.S. each year. Less than 8 percent is recycled.

“Plastic never really goes away,” said Borg. “It stays with us forever and impacts the health of humans and living things on our planet. We need to change the disposable mentality that’s engrained in our culture. When 300 million people toss bottles and cups in the trash daily it adds up to devastating impacts on resources and the environment.”

“Consumption of single-use and disposable plastic cups has spiraled out of control,” said Dianna Cohen, co-founder and CEO of Plastic Pollution Coalition. “Reusable steel cups and containers will help us works toward source reduction and waste diversion that makes a real impact. We applaud Outside Lands and Steelys for their efforts.”

Based in San Francisco, Steelys Drinkware is a pioneering wholesale supplier of custom reusable zero waste cups, water bottles bottles, food containers, straws, and accessories that provide an alternative to single-use and disposable plastic. 

Learn how you can join the Refill Revolution.