Cannes’ commitments for a greener festival

Reducing waste and carbon emissions, recovering residual materials as well as offsetting the carbon footprint – for the first time, the Cannes Film Festival will take actions that the event will become more eco-friendly. "The challenge is huge, but we will and must succeed, each year a little more, each year a little better. Today, we are taking an important and hugely ambitious step”, state Pierre Lescure, President of the Festival de Cannes and Thierry Frémaux, General Delegate. “We will report on it regularly, in very practical ways. The 74th edition will herald the future for a Festival that will last."


Indeed, it is overdue to make a commitment to environmental responsibility and action. While the Berlin International Film Festival keeps rolling out a reusable red carpet which is made of yarn produced from recycled fish nets, the Croisette catwalk for the stars was made of PVC and replaced three times per day. In 2013, French environmental organization Greenpride protested with a petition against the ongoing replacement of the red carpet and collected about 9,000 signatures. When the activists handed the signatures over to the Thierry Frémaux, the Cannes film festival director signalized that he wants to work out more eco-friendy solutions. Eight years later, he may deliver on his promise. The volume of red carpet will be reduced by 50 percent, and their will be a 24 percent reduction of the volume of carpet used in the Village International areas. Furthermore, the festival declared that the carpet is fully recycable.


Cannes’ green commitment is focusing on twelve points, which include the use of hybrid and electric vehicles, reduction of print material, and the total elimination of plastic water bottles. In 2019, more than 22,000 plastic water bottles were given out to festival attendees. Further issues on the list include responsible catering as well as maintaining a waste recovery rate of over 95%. There is no information disclosed if the festival sponsor Nespresso will continue to offer coffee from capsule machines, which cause unnecessary resource consumption and waste.


A further aim is to raise awareness of eco-responsible actions among the organizing team, Marché du Film exhibitors, service providers and accredited persons. Badge holders will receive a pass for access to public transport in the City of Cannes. Festival-goers will be charged a fee of 20 euros to compensate for the footprint of their travel and accommodation. For the selection of compensation programs the festival will appoint a scientific committee of independent experts.


The green measures are developed in conjunction with the consulting firm Green Événements. “Not everything can be done instantly and this policy, which is both proactive and pragmatic, will naturally be implemented over the medium and long term”, states the Cannes film festival. “Feedback after each Festival will enable us to refine and perfect the processes, as new developments emerge and the years pass.

The 74th Cannes film festival is scheduled for July 6-17,  2021.


Photos: © GFS

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