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How Sustainable is the Cannes Lions Festival Really?

INFLUENCER: We all need to work together to make the festival cleaner and greener, writes Kyra Roest

How Sustainable is the Cannes Lions Festival Really?

This year Cannes Lions launched the Sustainable Development Goals Lion. Great idea! Especially since I do believe creativity can be a positive force for good. Nevertheless, it also got me thinking. If you care about this subject, then why not start at the festival itself? Practice what you preach… 

Here’s what I saw in Cannes:

- Plastic water bottles everywhere

- Incoming and outgoing flights from all over the world

- Leaflets, posters, etc. and lots of print work on non-sustainable paper

- Air conditioning running everywhere

- All new venues on the beach, just for one time only

- Food waste 

- What about equality… are we already there? And I’m not just talking about the female / male discussion here…

As a reminder, these are the 17 Sustainable Development Goals: 

1. No poverty

2. Zero hunger

3. Good health and well being

4. Quality education 

5. Gender equality

6. Clean water and sanitation

7. Affordable and clean energy

8. Decent work and economic growth

9. Industry, innovation and infrastructure 

10. Reduced inequalities

11. Sustainable cities and communities

12. Responsible consumption and production

13. Climate action 

14. Life below water

15. Life on land

16. Peace, justice and strong institutions

17. Partnership for the goals 

Last year at the Embassy of Dutch Creativity we organised a hackathon together with Kinetic on how to create a more sustainable Cannes Lions festival. This year we tried to act on it with the embassy and the initiators of the embassy. And I can tell you it is not an easy task…

The most sustainable way to travel to Cannes is either by foot or bike. Although we are known as a country where everyone cycles, +1300 km is a bit too far. Next best thing is either an electrical car or train. One of us arranged an e-hybrid car (BMW i8) and one of us travelled by train. But catching a flight is still the cheapest and fastest option to get there. Makes you wonder… But while in Cannes we all cycled of course - or went by foot.

We also made an effort to work with a sustainable beach club. It was our second year at Plage Long Beach. We used the same material to build it as last year, we reused our wrist bands and focused on producing a minimal amount of waste per day as possible. We even used sustainable, disposable glasses and plates. Not to mention our collaboration with Join the Pipe - the reusable water bottles and the tap points. 

Unfortunately, we still have a long way to go. Creating as much shade as possible wasn’t enough. 37 degrees in the shade screamed for ventilators. 

So, let’s set ourselves a challenge for next year’s edition. A challenge to see how we as individuals can create an impact together. 

Below are some tips for next year:

• If you receive something to eat or drink that you don’t want, don’t throw it out. Give it away!

• Mentor young people. It’s a thoughtful, inspiring and a powerful way to guide someone towards a better future.

• Make sure you go with a diverse team!

• Let’s make less use of all the air conditioning. We might stink a bit, but a bit of lemon scent does wonders. 

• If possible try to travel by train or electrical car. And in case you do need to fly…

• Pack less. At the end of the trip you always have clothes you didn't even wear. Besides that, just use hand luggage, it’s cheaper (and makes you much faster on your feet).

• Bring a solar powered power bank for charging your phone.

• Remember, much of the waste that we produce on land ends up in the ocean.

Any tips from your side? And no, not going to Cannes Lions is not an option. 

By the way, our goal is to travel in a BMW i8 again. Roadster. ‘Cause for sure, we’ve got to travel in style…

Kyra Roest is founder at AD.BUSiNESS

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Dutch Digital Agencies, Fri, 29 Jun 2018 09:25:06 GMT