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A responsible Festival

Vision and approach

Vision and approach

Since the very first editions of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal in the early 1980s, organizers have shown a deep respect for social and environmental values. In that era, the concept of sustainable development had neither been named nor defined, and large-scale recycling was still far from being rooted in the mores of Quebecers.

Out of concern for preserving the environment, now and for generations to come, the Festival is more focused than ever on its duty to reduce its ecological footprint. The many efforts implemented in this regard embrace environmental issues and the economic and social concerns of the city and the country. They also promote cultural development and the permanence of local artistic talent.

Every year, the Festival develops and renews tools with social and environmental impact, and gives the community the means to take up the practice of music, rendering it increasingly democratic.

An undeniable impact

Endowed with an annual budget of approximately $30M, the Festival generates economic spinoffs of close to $100M, derived in large part from spending by tourists visiting specifically to attend the largest musical event in the world—with an annual attendance now reaching 2 million visits. In addition, Festival spinoffs provide our federal and provincial governments with $20M in annual tax revenue. This illustrates how the Festival returns much more to the society than it receives in subsidies—about 16% of its budget.

Culture at the heart of sustainable development

Culture is an inexhaustible source of pleasure, wonder, discovery and unity. By inspiring reflection on the issues and an openness to the world, major cultural events like the Festival contribute to the greater welfare of the population. As attested by the 2009-2013 plan for action and sustainable development produced by the Ministère de la Culture, des Communications et de la Condition féminine, it is necessary to “anchor Quebec culture in sustainable development, making it an essential dimension of same.” In this perspective, it is undeniable that, through its actions and in its role as a cultural engine, the Festival plays a role as a model and leader in promoting sustainable and inclusive development.

In the pages that follow, you will find details on a number of sustainable development initiatives—environmental, social and economic—which the Festival has implemented over the years.