THE FESTIVAL DE CANNES IS TAKING ACTION TO PROTECT THE PLANET
In order to draw the event and its structure into a proactive environmental process that is both realistic and sustainable, the Festival de Cannes is implementing a strategy underpinned by two priority issues: CO2 emissions and waste management.
These two pillars were identified as being absolute priorities, and will be tackled simultaneously through a two-pronged approach:
► REDUCING (carbon emissions and waste), and
► TAKING ACTION when reductions are not possible by offsetting carbon emissions and supporting environmental projects, as well as by promoting residual resources.
The idea is to completely overhaul the way in which the Festival de Cannes takes place. Naturally, this is a long-term policy, but the first high-impact measures were implemented starting in the 2021 edition.
More info ► Initiatives of the companies collaborating with the Festival de Cannes
REDUCING: areas of action
Since 2022, 100% of the official car fleet is comprised of electric and hybrid vehicles.
Just like the accredited visitors, the vast majority of whom get around on foot thanks to how close-by the Festival's many spaces are, the artistic teams that travel to Cannes to showcase their films are also encouraged to walk wherever possible.
All participants enjoy free access to the City of Cannes' public transport network thanks to their own dedicated pass, available online in their "MyCannes" space. Since 2021, more than 70,000 journeys have been taken this way during the Festival.
Between 2019 and 2021, the Festival slashed its usual volumes of printed materials by 79% (already Imprim’Vert PEFC-certified) by continuing efforts to digitalise publications and tickets and cut back on print runs.
Film promotional materials for the press are now fully digitalised, too.
The red carpet
The red carpet replacement rate has been halved since 2021, thereby saving close to 1,400 kilos of material every edition – a mere 59% of the traditional volume of carpet used.
The volume of carpet used in the Village International areas was also reduced by 24% in 2021. This optimisation effort continues each year (650m2 of carpeting from the red carpet eliminated in 2023).
Food and drink
The Festival's caterers complied with an 'eco-responsible' set of specifications, including commitments to prioritise fresh, seasonal produce and short circuits, to offer vegetarian options, to tackle food wastage, and to reduce waste.
Plastic water bottles (over 22,000 units in 2019) have been completely eliminated. Alongside this, water fountains are set up across the Festival's various spaces.
The origin of Festival merchandise and products from the official boutique was reassessed with a view to systematically looking into alternatives sourced from France and Europe. French and European items are now prioritised for each new product added to the collection. In 2021, French-made goodies already accounted for 40% of all sales.
RECYCLING: solutions under consideration
In 2021, recycling was set up across the Palais des Festivals spaces to allow accredited visitors to better recycle waste at source. Furthermore, thanks to the environmentally-friendly policies implemented by the Palais des Festivals, the City of Cannes, and the Festival's teams, a waste recovery rate of 99% was maintained, while the percentage of materials recovered increased from 77% in 2019 to 79% in 2022.
For the past ten years or so, the Festival's red carpet has been upcycled after the event, reused in the car, construction and agri-food industries.
In 2021, the Festival trialled ways it could be recycled. It is now collected by an association that specialises in developing the circular economy and upcycling materials in the PACA region’s cultural and educational sectors. The red carpet is cleaned and refurbished before being reused locally. This saves several tonnes of fabric from becoming waste, and helps the association’s members in turn.
Over the past two years, it has been put to use for multiple set designs and as a backdrop for graduation ceremonies, and used to make upcycled items.
This emblem of the Festival is a shining embodiment of a zero-waste approach that seeks to reduce, reuse, and recycle.
OFFSETTING: allocated means
Over €1,340,000 raised to help save the planet.
The Festival has been fully offsetting emissions related to guests' travel since 2012. In a bid to take this even further, in 2021 accredited parties were asked to pay an eco-contribution to offset the carbon emissions triggered by their travel to Cannes as well as their accommodation. As these emissions account for over 80% of the event's total carbon footprint (with the exception of the 2021 edition), the Festival itself undertook to offset emissions directly linked to holding the event by paying its own eco-contribution, too. For its part, the Festival is committed to mitigating the emissions connected to producing the event by spending €100,000 in support of environmental projects.
This unprecedented initiative resulted in over €1,340,000 in funds raised since 2021, of which €206,000 are direct contributions from the Festival.
In the lead-up to the Festival, and to ensure the funds were allocated to relevant and reliable programmes chosen from 20 different environmental projects, a committee of independent experts was set up, comprising the following specialists:
- Jean-François Camilleri, founder and CEO of Echo Studio
- Anna Creti, professor of economics at the Université Paris Dauphine and director of the Chaire Economie du Climat
- Jean-Pierre Gattuso, oceanographer and research director at the CNRS
- Anne Girault, energy and climate expert and chair of the Association Bilan Carbone
The funds raised are donated in full to environmental carbon-offsetting and sponsorship projects.
These projects span the globe, from within striking distance of Cannes to France and further afield (South America, Asia and Africa).