For more than 50 years, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival (Jazz Fest) has been the ultimate celebration of Louisiana culture.

This year, in addition to celebrating our 17th year as presenting sponsor for the Festival, Shell worked with Jazz Fest to increase recycling efforts at the Festival to benefit local non-profit organizations.

The effort included collaborating with the organizers and local recycling experts, like Grounds Krewe, to identify sustainable solutions that would reduce the amount of waste generated by the Festival going to local landfills, create new jobs, and pilot new recycling collection streams – all in addition to the Festival’s long-standing tradition of recycling used cooking oil.

“Jazz Fest brings our community together in such a unique way,” said Colette Hirstius, Shell Senior Vice President, Gulf of Mexico. “So, it is fitting that at Jazz Fest, so many helping hands came together to divert more than 21 tons of waste from landfills. All that good work is helping fund two local non-profit community projects in the area that complement local environmental and waste removal initiatives. Those community projects will help remove debris from waterways and improve water quality in southeast Louisiana and the Gulf of Mexico.”

“We are truly grateful to Shell for spearheading major sustainability advancements at Jazz Fest.”

Quint Davis, Producer/Director of the Festival
A Shell recycling state at Jazz Fest 2022

17.56 metric tons of recycling diverted from landfill

  • 10.91 metric tons – cardboard
  • 5.524 metric tons – cans/ plastic bottles
  • 1.13 metric tons – hard-to-recycle plastics that produced ~383 gallons of pyroil

Avoided the equivalent of 50.75 metric tons of CO2

  • 4.37 metric tons of food waste composted ( 2022 polit led by WWOZ)

Avoided the equivalent of 4.29 metric tons of CO2

Avoided 55.05 metric tons- of CO2 from the air (1 metric ton = 2204.62 lbs)

  • That's enough air capacity to fill about 853,160 regulation 29.5" basketballs

Local Non-Profits Benefited*

  • Derelict Crab Trap Removal - Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program - Removed hundreds of derelict crab traps that continue to catch and kill crabs and other marine life, act as navigation hazards to boaters, and shred nets for shrimpers and other commercial fishermen.
  • Litter Gitter Project - Pontchartrain Conservancy - Deployed a trash-capture device in SE Louisiana and in the Gulf of Mexico.

998 gallons of water used at refil stations

  • Equivalent to 7,7984 single use, 16oz bottles

2,500 lbs of reclaimed cooking oil converted to fuel for shrimp boats

*Shell funded local community projects equal to the fair market value of the materials recycled at Jazz Fest 2022.

Download the Infographic

Collaborating with Jazz Fest organizers and local recycling experts

Shell calculated the fair market value of the materials recycled during Jazz Fest and worked with two local nonprofits to identify projects that would bring continued waste-reduction benefits to the local community. The two projects funded by the fair market value of the Jazz Fest recycling are assisting in the long-term recovery following Hurricane Ida: the Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program to remove hundreds of derelict crab traps that continue to catch and kill crabs and other marine life and act as hazards to boaters and fishermen, and The Pontchartrain Conservancy to deploy a Litter Gitter trash-capture device to intercept floating litter from stormwater runoff.

“We are truly grateful to Shell for spearheading major sustainability advancements at Jazz Fest,” said Quint Davis, Producer/Director of the Festival. “Any large-scale special event faces unique challenges regarding recycling and waste management, and Shell has generously provided expertise, funding and leadership to help the Festival improve our sustainability efforts in ways that benefit the entire region.”

Shell partnered with NexusCircular to turn the 1.13 metrics tons of hard-to-recycle plastics (flexible plastics, water bottle caps, foam, plastic cups, cooking oil containers) into 383 gallons of pyrolysis oil that can be used as feedstock at Shell’s Norco Manufacturing Complex.

Editor’s Notes:

The Shell team calculated a $16,000 fair market value of the materials recycled as of June 13, 2022, to determine the funding for community projects, including 10 metric tons of cardboard, 5 metric tons of aluminum cans and plastic bottles, and over 1 metric ton of hard-to-recycle plastics. In addition to the recycling of plastics, the Festival also achieved dramatic results in other areas. For example: more than 4 tons of food waste was composted through a WWOZ pilot project; nearly 1,000 gallons of water were used at refill stations (equivalent to almost 8,000 single-use 16-oz bottles); and more than 2,500 gallons of used cooking oil was reclaimed to turn into biodiesel for local shrimping boats.

JazzFest recycling facts infographic

See all the recycling efforst Shell, the organizers, and local recycling experts were able to acheive at the 2022 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.

Download the Infographic