Governor Dan McKee today is recognizing the Newport Festivals Foundation for ensuring that the upcoming productions of its world-renowned concerts, Newport Folk and Newport Jazz, will be sustainable events this summer. NFF undertook a rigorous process to earn a green certification from the Department of Environmental Management that involved NFF scrutinizing all aspects of running the festivals and guaranteeing that it will reduce their environmental impact. Long synonymous with Rhode Island summers and iconic names like Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, and Duke Ellington, Newport Folk will be held July 28-30 and Newport Jazz Aug. 4-6 at Fort Adams State Park. DEM strongly encourages all organizers to hold green-certified events.
“I applaud Newport Festivals Foundation for setting and achieving ambitious sustainability goals at this summer’s music festivals,” said Governor McKee. “If one of the premier cultural events on Rhode Island’s annual calendar that attracts tens of thousands of visitors per weekend can commit to eco-friendly practices, all organizers holding events in the Ocean State can do the same. It’s a terrific example of how we can Keep Rhody Litter-Free.”
“When we’re at the historic and scenic Fort Adams State Park for Newport Folk and Newport Jazz, we’re constantly reminded of the beauty that makes our events so unique,” said Jay Sweet, Executive Producer of the Newport Folk and Jazz Festivals. “Surrounded by Narragansett Bay, our location in the Ocean State has always been deeply interwoven into the DNA of who we are. It is not something we take for granted, as demonstrated by the commitment of our community to be more sustainable, year after year. We are so honored to be named a DEM-certified green event. We couldn’t have achieved this without our diligent staff and volunteers, in addition to our dedicated fans and artists.”
“Newport Festivals Foundation is leading by example on sustainability and not only is DEM grateful, but we also are working on incorporating sustainability practices at other events, large and small, held throughout the state park system,” said DEM Director Terry Gray. “By reducing single-use plastic water bottles, bags, and straws, providing comprehensive recycling opportunities, choosing locally based food vendors, minimizing food waste, and encouraging festival goers to bike, walk, or make use of water taxis and carpools to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, NFF has embedded green practices throughout its festivals. DEM is proud to certify Newport Folk and Newport Jazz as green events.”
“Being granted this certification means a lot to us, as it is the culmination of years of planning with sustainability at the forefront of our minds,” said Allison Pangakis, Newport Festivals Foundation Director of Site Operations. “This is tangible proof that our sponsor partners, vendors, staff, and volunteers have put forth an effort worth rewarding and that we are well on our way to achieving all of our sustainability goals.
Capacity crowds of 10,000 people pack Fort Adams during the festivals. Nearly 90 percent come to Newport specifically for the festivals. Fort Adams has the largest economic impact of any Rhode Island state park, with 1.3 million visitors – including nearly 775,000 out-of-state visitors – generating an estimated $64 million in economic output in 2016, according to a University of Rhode Island study
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