Today the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon announced his plan to enact a new “Sustainable Energy for All Initiative” at the UN Headquarters. The proposal naturally included the two-time Grammy-winning rock band Linkin Park. (Yes, that’s right. Linkin Park)
A cynical eye might dismiss the group’s philanthropy as another jump onto the “celebrities save Haiti” bandwagon. However, the band’s foundation, Music for Relief, has had its hand in a vast array of humanitarian efforts since its formation in 2004. (We suppose we can set aside any notions of the band capitalizing on altruism for notoriety.) After all do you even know what any of these guys look like? The band has sold over 50 million records, but largely remain out of the public eye.
The U.N. Foundation will handle the grunt work of implementing the sustainable energy programs, with a focus in Haiti where 10 million have no access to electricity.
Linkin Park and The Secretary-General have partnered before, believe it or not, hosting a live Facebook Townhall meeting regarding disaster relief. “Most recently we collaborated in our efforts to help in the disaster relief initiatives in Haiti,” guitarist Brad Delson told The Observer. “Our fans helped to get these solar lamps, which our bass player Phoenix got to see; he went to Haiti and saw those camps down there.”
Though new to the subject of energy sustainability, drummer Rob Bourdon admitted to The Observer he was unaware 1.4 billion people worldwide don’t have access to electricity, the band is conscious of what it can do.
“I think we have the unique ability to bring our fans, people in the music community, and fans of other bands to help with natural disasters and global warming,” said Mr. Bourdon. “When the UN posted video footage of Haiti it had 6,000 views. When we posted the footage and added our music it got 9.5 million.” Mr. Bourdon is referring to Linkin Park’s “Not Alone” video, which uses the U.N.’s graphic imagery of the Haiti earthquake aftermath.
The Secretary-General’s plan is to ensure universal access to modern energy services, double the rate of energy efficiency and double the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix.